Eat/Drink is NEXTpittsburgh’s weekly roundup of Pittsburgh’s thriving food scene.
The Brew Gentlemen start their first batch
After years of planning, renovating, financing and palate walls, The Brew Gentlemen began the long-awaited process of making beer on Monday.
Co-owner Matt Katase and Head Brewer Brandon Capps took to the mash tank Monday morning to start brewing an English-style special bitter called Hello World.
“We needed to start the system with something easy, clean and simple,” says co-owner Asa Foster.
To start out, the Gentlemen will brew a number of their flagship beers and several one-offs to serve during a series of soft openings currently planned for April and May. Then, they’re going to get back to work putting the finishing touches on their pub, where a bar top of black-stained concrete went in last week.
“We’re going to have 10 soft opening events, each bigger than the last” says Katase. “We’ll learn something from ten people being in here, and then we’ll learn a whole different set of things from 20 people being in here. And we’ll start to get an idea of what a slow night will look like versus a busy night or a moderate night.”
Among those the Gents would like to include in their early soft openings are their detractors on Twitter.
“We’ve been the brewers who don’t brew anything,” says Foster. “It’s going to be really nice when we hit them in the face with a terrific beer, though.”
The Warhol Cafe gets a makeover
The Andy Warhol Museum turns 20 this year, and to celebrate, they’re doing more than just re-hanging their entire collection and throwing a party. The Warhol will get a new café as a part of its newly renovated first floor.
“The idea is to just give it more visibility from the street and in the lobby,” says the Warhol’s Rachel Baron-Horn. “We’ll have some seating, but the idea is really to have people eat in that space and overflow into the lobby.”
Demolition on the current space will begin by the end of the month. The café and kitchen, which had been in the museum’s basement, will move upstairs. The Warhol’s new lobby, which is modeled after Andy Warhol’s old studio called The Factory, is designed to give visitors a sense of what Warhol’s creative space was like during his heyday.
“We wanted a place where people can gather,” Baron-Horn says. “It’s a great space for lots of different uses, and we’d like to populate it with a lot more activity.”
Mineo’s expansion opens
After holding a soft opening for family and friends on St. Patrick’s Day, Dominic Mineo had hoped to keep word of the Squirrel Hill restaurant’s expanded space and full bar under wraps until he could plan a grand opening. Well, the word got out.
“The plan was not to advertise until April 1,” says Mineo. “I think everybody knows we’re already here.”
On top of a full-service bar, Mineo’s now offers about 90 beers for consumption in-house, including a dozen on tap, and close to 250 varieties available for takeout. The new menu also sports a selection of around 25 different Italian wines available by the glass or bottle.
In addition to significant bar seating, the new dining room has several hi-top tables, including two made out of old wine barrels.
Mineo’s will run happy hour specials daily from 4:30 to 6 p.m. and again from 9 to 10 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.
Dive Bar & Grille opens in Lawrenceville
Dive Bar & Grille, the new venture from Clint Kuskie and Gordon Judge, opened over the weekend at 5147 Butler Street in the space formerly occupied by Alchemy N’ Ale.
Open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., Dive offers more than 30 beers on tap, a full selection of house cocktails and one of the largest food menus you’re likely to ever see in a bar.