Ahh, Pittsburgh Restaurant Week. Our twice-yearly excuse to act like total gluttons under the guise of ‘we’re just foodies who really love the cause.’
This year, we’re acting like slightly less-hardcore
gluttons foodies, only trying 3 restaurants between work schedules and working on our thigh gap schedules. But we decided to go for broke on those three days and check out one classic, one favorite, and one new spot. Tuesday night, we began with the classic: LeMont.
LeMont is one of the last remaining fancy restaurants from the days of Ole Fancy Mt. Washington, before this city was a true foodie destination. Make no doubt about it, it’s fancy, but the staff is welcoming, dinner feels relaxed, and although you could propose to your lady here quite easily, you could also pop in for an early dinner before a Buccos Skyblast fireworks night (or during – you can see the fireworks from inside the dining room).
We ultimately settled on LeMont as our destination for Night One because they had the best list of Restaurant Week options of almost any restaurant participating. (For some reason, this summer celebration seemed to feature only a single Restaurant Week special from many locations, and as we were double-dating with my parents, we wanted to find a place that allowed us to open up as many options as possible).
For $30.15 per person, you had a three-course meal: soup or salad, entree, and dessert.
And I started with the salad, tossed in their housemade balsamic vinaigrette. This was incredible – super-fresh greens, crunchy croutons, and that dressing was AMAZING; tangy and ever-so-salty. I wish bottles were available to take home!
For his entree, Michael got the veal Santa Fe, a delightful veal scallopini with shiitake mushrooms, tomatoes, scallions, and super-zesty banana peppers. The banana peppers had an unexpected kick, and this dish was actually spicy! Michael was really pleased (and as was I, with the tiny bite I may have stolen off his plate).
As I’ve mentioned before on this blog, I rarely turn down a chance to enjoy a pork chop when I see one on the menu, so I ordered LeMont’s stuffed pork chop. Unfortunately, this was probably my least-favorite item of the evening. The pork chop itself was delicious – cooked to a perfect medium, very tender and juicy – but the stuffing was just a bit too heavy and salty. Between the saltiness of the gravy and the stuffing, it was a little bit much, although the pork chop itself was a dream.
My parents both ordered the surf and turf filet medallions with shrimp and scallops, alongside a house béarnaise sauce. These were incredible. The steak was so juicy it barely needed a knife, and LeMont cooks scallops to perfection each and every time we try them. The buttery, lemony béarnaise sauce was just the right accompaniment. I am quite grateful that my mother has a small appetite and shared her plate with me!
Michael got the chocolate mousse, which came in its own tiny EDIBLE CHOCOLATE CUP. The presentation alone on this dessert could have won awards, when you factor in the flavor, it’s no contest: this is one of the best desserts EVER.
The pacing of the meal was lovely; we had plenty of time to enjoy chatting with our dinner partners, perusing the wine list, and nibbling on the complimentary bread brought to the table.
LeMont may be one of the last standing relics of our ‘not a foodie town’ past, but it still keeps pace with the newer places. The decor remains unchanged for the most part, classic and ornate, but the menu pointed out local foods, organic choices, and in-season vegetables. If you’re looking for a last-minute Restaurant Week special with a view that’s out of this world, keep this classic Pittsburgh establishment in mind!