Ever since I first tried B52‘s food at the first Pittsburgh Vegfest, I’ve been eagerly awaiting the opening of their brick-and-mortar restaurant. The completely vegan café opened recently and is located in Upper Lawrenceville, where they specialize in American and Middle Eastern fusion cuisine — think hummus, eggplant, and lentil-esque dishes packed with spice and flavor. Even if you normally eat meat, you won’t be missing it here.
The space itself is minimalistic, but cozy — a giant display of the menu greets you upon entry to the restaurant, as well as a small section of to-go items and vegan baked goods. Trust me, you’ll be back here after your meal.
The café itself is pretty small, but the space is well-utilized, containing several tables for smaller parties, as well as bar seating and a larger community table towards the back of the restaurant. Overall, the space has a very laid-back, but friendly atmosphere — perfect for a relaxed meal with a friend.
I went with a larger group of people, and while we had to wait a little for a table, we were still seated in a timely manner. The most stressful part of the experience was deciding what to order. I opted for a bowl of lentil soup and the shiitake mushroom flatbread, plus a side of their house-made Harissa sauce (#SpoonTip: get this).
If I hadn’t already had my morning cup o’ joe, I definitely would have gotten the weekly drink special: coffee with Tahitian vanilla bean, orange oil, cinnamon, and house-made almond milk. Everyone agreed that their food was delicious, and we would all definitely be back for more.
Currently, B52 is only open for breakfast, brunch and lunch, but they have recently announced on their Facebook page that they will soon be open for dinner. When that does happen…you know where I’ll be.