The community of East Liberty has a diverse and storied history.
From farmland to home of an urban renaissance, the most famous of its early residents was Pittsburgh icon Alexander Negley. Many industrial barons eventually followed building large homes of every architectural design to reside in the green open space with clean air.
By the early 20th century East Liberty became Pittsburgh’s second ‘downtown’. After being hit hard by the depression and surviving through several attempts at revitalization, in the early 2000s flagship retailers took up shop and the community slowly began to evolve into the community it is today.
Home to hip retailers, top notch restaurants, healthy grocers, and brand new urban condos, East Liberty is a must visit destination for foodies seeking a taste of Pittsburgh’s restaurant renaissance or shopper seekings quality unique purchases.
We’ve compiled a list of the best and newest restaurants and retailers in the community to guide you on your next visit.
When you’re looking for a good gift for friends in the area that like to experience unique new eateries or shop at cool retailers, consider purchasing a Gift Ya gift certificate to one the great places below. Gift Ya makes it easy to send a personalized gift certificate to anywhere to anyone via text. They won’t need to cart around a gift card to enjoy it, it can synch right to their debit card for the ultimate convenience.
Popular Vietnamese Cuisine
Image courtesy @twosisters_pgh IG. Praised for having some of the best Pho in Pittsburgh.
Two Sisters PGH | 412.404.2760
216 N Highland Ave
This family affair is run by two sisters, alongside their aunt who runs the kitchen doling out quality Vietnamese fare. The aim to add a modern twist on classic dishes with a focus on presentation and memorable flavors. Visit the lovely cafe on North Highland for a fast casual quality meal.
“Usually a soft opening helps to smooth out the kinks. But Two Sisters is already running on all cylinders, and let me explain why. First, it's an authentic menu with deliciously prepared food. The veggie spring rolls came with lettuce wraps (and herbs if you ask), so that you can enjoy eating them in the traditional Vietnamese style.” - David B. Yelp Review
Cookin up the best Cajun food this side of the Mississippi
Muddywaterspgh.com | 412.361.0555
130 S Highland Avenue
Tue-Thu 4:30pm-12am | Fri 4:30pm-1am
Sat 4:30pm-1am | Sun 4:30pm-11pm
One might not expect to find good oysters this far from the coast in Pittsburgh, but you’ll be pleasantly surprised at Muddy Waters. Beyond oysters you’ll find all the best Cajun dishes from Po Boys to Gumbo, and can enjoy live music Tuesdays at 8pm and Fridays at 9pm. Get ready to get shucking folks!
“I've been to New Orleans 4 times and have become quite the lover of all things Cajun, especially oysters. And good oysters are hard to come by in Pittsburgh.... until you go to Muddy Waters!” - Kara B. Yelp Review
Satisfying your chicken cravings
Image courtesy @birdontherunpgh IG
Birdontherun.com | 412.450.8915
128 S Highland Ave.
Fri-Sat 11am-am | Sun 11am-10pm
From the same owners as Muddy Waters, Bird on the Run focuses on Southern Fried Chicken, spiced to your preference from “Not Hot” to “Hot AF.” Make sure to order a side of crispy waffle fries or one of their delicious frozen cocktails from Froze to Lemongrass Margarita. Enjoy a spicy treat then cool off with a frozen cocktail for a great night out!
“Fried chicken. Made simple and good. You really can't beat hot, fresh fried chicken but Bird on the Run takes it one step further. They make it made to order just the way you like it. Classic or spicy. Bone in or out. With sides or with more chicken. However you want fried chicken they do it, quick and well.” - Kashiff M. Yelp Review
Contemporary American Approach
Fishnorfowlpgh.com | 412.460.4644
5523 Penn Avenue
Chef Richard DeShantz opens his newest culinary destination is the former home of Salt of the Earth, the pioneer of Pittsburgh's foodie scene. The already beautiful space has been transformed into a modern minimal atmosphere serving equally as edgy meals. Serving American food utilizing flavors and techniques from around the world, they aim to give thoughtful attention to ingredient use and preparation.
“This was one of the most enjoyable meals I've had in Pittsburgh in quite some time, as well as the best meal I've had from the restaurants owned by DeShantz's group. I'm already looking forward to coming back again and trying more of the menu.” James G. Yelp Review
Providing fresh and healthy foods in East Liberty
Image courtesy @mola.pgh IG
Themolafish.com | 412.365.6688
6018 Penn Ave
Fri-Sat 11am-11pm | Sun 11am-9pm
If you’re looking for authentic, delicious Asian foods, head to The Mola Fish in East Liberty. Opened by the dynamic duo of Alex Tang and Mimi Lee, whose passion for nontraditional and unique cooking and presentation methods come to life in this top notch sushi spot.
“The food, drinks and atmosphere are amazing!! Fresh, simple, clean and super tasty describes the food and drinks. The sushi is super fresh, and I love their take in rolls-that also have the freshest seaweed I've ever had! … The chef and his team were awesome!!” Pam B. Yelp Review
Modern French Restaurant
Thetwistedfrenchmen.com | 412.665.2880
5925 Baum Blvd
A modern French restaurant located on the second floor of the historic Royal York Auction Gallery building, The Twisted Frenchmen honors classic French cuisine at its finest. Chef Andrew Garbarino takes each guest through a tasting experience of 4, 8, or 18 courses. Each dish is a sensory delight, prepared with modern techniques and methods to immerse guests in their meal.
“Pittsburgh has taken a giant step up as a foodie town with this spot! The Twisted Frenchman is not your typical night out, but a great spot to treat yourself to delicious dining and service. … The service was impeccable and the food melts in your mouth while dancing with your taste buds.” Molly R. Yelp Review
A Collaborative tavern dinner series
Image courtesy @whitfieldpgh IG
Whitfieldpgh.com | 412.626.3090
120 S. Whitfield
Mon-Thu 7am-3pm & 5pm-10pm
Fri 7am-3pm & 5pm-12am | Sat 7am-2pm & 5-10am
Sun 7am-2pm & 5-10pm
As the in-house restaurant for the uber-hip Ace Hotel, this transformed former YMCA is the perfect spot for hearty farm driven food. Whitfield's menu honors Pennsylvania's cultural heritage, bountiful agriculture and distinct way of life. You can’t go wrong with one of their dry-aged steaks.
“Super quirky, in all the right ways. I loved every second and every bite at this place. It checked all the boxes, and then some. Unique, comfortable, delicious... I can't wait to go back and try more from the menu. I would recommend going here for any and all reasons/occasions.” Cassie M. Yelp Review
Eat. Drink. Lounge
Image courtesy @spoonpgh IG
Spoonpgh.com | 412.362.6001
34 S. Highland Avenue
Fri-Sat 5pm-11pm | Sun 5pm-9pm
Serving up dishes as one of the city's premier dining destinations for nearly a decade, Spoon helped write the first chapter of the city’s culinary rebirth and are hard at work on the next one. They’re constantly reinventing their food and drink programs from from nationally renowned chefs and sommeliers. Enjoy a modern high-end meal before a night out in East Liberty at Spoon.
“This place is truly a five star restaurant. …The food was on point and so was the customer service. Our server was friendly and very knowledgeable about the menu. … Our waiter was not only able to describe the components of each dish but he was also able to describe how they taste and he did it all with patience.” - Sunny K. Yelp Review
Wood Grill and Craft Beers
Image courtesy @thefiresidepub IG
Firesidepubhouse.com | 412.661.9900
Entire the distinctive open kitchen concept and watch from your front row seats as your quality American fare is prepared, with the wood fire oven as the star. You can pair the smoky, woody flavors with one of the craft beers from their immense collection.
“I loved this place! … Our waitress was awesome and broke down the menu and gave recommendations in every single section which was so helpful. The sandwich portions are a good size for sure-will not leave feeling hungry. … Large vent above stove in the middle creates a really cool atmosphere. They also have a specialty menu of items not typically on the menu so for sure check that out as well.” - Denali G. Yelp Review
Embodying a uniquely American mindset and aesthetic
Image courtesy @schoolhouse IG
Schoolhouse.com | 412.725.0050
5811 Broad St
Schoolhouse Electric was founded by Brian Faherty in 2003 following his discovery of a long-lost collection of cast-iron glass shade molds inside an old storage warehouse in Port Jervis, New York. After carefully restoring them back into production, the hard-working team at Schoolhouse has continued to grow every year since.
Inspired by an innate affection for pieces with a past and the belief that something worth owning now is worth owning forever, you’ll find everything from iconic lighting and furniture to analog clocks, art and domestic utility goods.
“Very eclectic shop that has fair trade items, with that comes highly expensive pricing. They have extremely appealing decor and items in a variety of categories. If you are in the market for a unique gift this might be a good place to stop.” - Erin F. Yelp Review
One of the country's most successful lifestyle retailers
Dtlr.com | 412.661.0240
6113 Penn Avenue
Fri-Sat 10am-8pm | Sun 11am-4pm
When you need the newest and coolest sneakers and athleisure apparel, head straight to Villa. Men, women and kids can find the latest from Nike and Adidas, Vans and New Era. Be ready to line up on release days to snag the most coveted kicks!
“The store is nicely laid out with men's clothing on the left and women on the right. On the far rear wall is the shoe section were all the shoes are. They carry men's, women's, and kids’ shoes. They carry pretty much all the exclusive Alife shoes, Air Jordan's, Air Max's, Air Force Ones, Nike Boots and Timberland's among other shoes and boots...” - Tim W. Yelp Review
Our clothing tell stories of triumph, individualism and hustle
Homage.com | 412.567.3387
6010 Penn Ave
Sat 10am-8pm | Sun 11am-5pm
HOMAGE turns back the clock with shout-outs to eclectic moments and personalities in sports, music, and popular culture. Their Pittsburgh location in East Liberty is stock full of black and gold for Yinzers young and old to show off their Pittsburgh pride!
“If you ever need a Pittsburgh themed shirt, Homage on Penn Avenue is where to go! I love these shirts because they are so soft and comfortable! They also carry other graphic tees for NBA, wrestling, baseball! Staff is super friendly, and the store is so neat and clean! I definitely will go back to this location to shop and purchase other shirts online!” - Rosa A. Yelp Review
Pittsburgh's biggest selection of men's clothes
Image courtesy @trimpittsburgh IG
Trimpittsburgh.com | 412.512.9251
5968 Baum Blvd
Sat 11am-6pm | Sun 12pm-5pm
Selling more than 40 brands from around the world – Underwear , Socks, Swimwear, Shirts and more, Trim has names that you’ll recognize, and many that are new, and just released! They add new styles weekly, so no matter your mood, or what your day holds, they’ll help you find that perfect pair.
‘I was excited to check this store out as it’s kind of nice to be able to check out clothing in person rather than online guesswork… The staff is very knowledgeable about their product offering, knowing the fabric types, cuts, colors, and sizing of just about everything in their store - and they have a huge selection of brands, colors, types, etc.” - Brian S. Yelp Review
Family owned Cultural Art’s Boutique
Jamil's Global Village | 412.363.9500
6024 Penn Ave
Fri 10am-1:15pm & 2:25pm-6pm
Sat 10am-6pm | Sun Closed
Jamil’s is an East Liberty institution, a survivor of the recent community development. Offering a global bazaar of afrocentric and Islamic apparel, jewelry, body oils, literature and art, the community mourned the recent loss of its namesake owner.
“"You don't get this at Target," I said to the store clerk and she laughed. But it's so true. This is an amazing local business that takes time to explain how a product is used and why you would use it. They have all kinds of beautiful imported gifts, incense, scents, clothing, jewelry and books.” - David P. Yelp Review
Exciting Lifestyle Center Environment
Image courtesy @bakerysquarepgh IG
6425 Penn Avenue
This former cookie factory has been transformed into a lifestyle center home to a hotel, gym, restaurants, and fine retailers, across the street from modern condos and apartments...oh and Google makes its home here as well. From modern high end decor at West Elm to whimsical womenswear at Anthropologie, you can shop until you drop and grab a quick or sit down dinner when you’re done.
“Bakery Square is a great place to put up guests for a wedding. Free 3hr garage parking, breakfast at Panera Bread (below Springhill Suites), shopping at Anthropologie and Free People, walk to Target, Staples, Trader Joes and McDonalds, and dinner/drinks at Social. Google offices on site. It's a lovely little place to stay and hang for a weekend. A nice addition to Pittsburgh.” - Bridgette W. Yelp Review
30 years experience in the bridal registry and gift market
Image courtesy @contemporaryconceptspgh IG
Contemporaryconcepts.com | 412.345.7466
This eclectic gift shop nestle dunder Trader Joe’s offers everything from Pittsburgh themed items to fine china, toys, jewelry, and accessories. It’s the perfect spot to find a gift for brides to be, new moms, or an anniversary or birthday.
“First time ordering from their website and I can't wait to be back for more! Not only do they have in stock a new dinnerware line that is not even on the manufacturer's website yet, but their free, lightning quick shipping blew me away. A new favorite seller! “ - Arc Management Google Review
Solving two basic problems: most guys’ clothing doesn’t fit well, and shopping for it is a real drag
Image courtesy @bonobos IG
Bonobos.com | 412.616.9177
6012 Penn Ave
Bonobos was born from a need for better fitting pants and a general frustration with clothes shopping. They call their retail locations “Guideshops” and where you make an appointment for an hour long fitting where you can drink a cold beer, enjoy a personalized fitting and styling with their knowledgeable Guides, who will then make your custom order that will ship directly to your house.
“Wonderful store with knowledgeable staff! I come here with my fiancé consistently and they are helpful and attentive the moment we step inside. When I shop for a gift, they really know how to pick out the right items and make the experience special and second to none. It is wonderful to have this store in Pittsburgh and I look forward to continue being a customer” - Allyson M. Google Review
Sunglasses and Eyeglasses
Image courtesy @warbyparker IG
Warbyparker.com | 412.567.1046
6016 Penn Ave
The epitome of hip glasses has come to Pittsburgh in revitalized East Liberty. You can find quality eyewear at revolutionary prices with a socially conscious mission. The shopping experience is stress free and you’ll leave happier and more stylish.
“The staff were fantastic and helped me pick out a pair that was not only fashionable but functional because I have such a high prescription. They were warm, helpful and knowledgeable start to finish. They ship the glasses right to your house.” - Jenny M. Google Review
You may not recognize the new East Liberty if you haven’t visited for awhile, so be sure to head over and explore all the new dining and shopping options is this historic Pittsburgh community. Don’t worry-- Penn Circle is much less confusing to navigate now!