Here's a late afternoon sweep of restaurant news:
1. Yesterday, I reported that
chef Dennis Marron has left the Commoner
. "It has been a long year," he said, citing the intense planning for the restaurant at the Kimpton Hotel Monaco. "When I moved here, I knew in the back of my mind that I wanted to eventually do my own thing."
This summer, he said he's going to take time to "get to know the city even better," and will begin looking at spaces. When I asked him if he has a concept in mind, he said he has many.
"But I'm a firm believer that the concept has to fit the space," he said. Stay turned for progress on Mr. Marron's next move.
2. At Soba
in Shadyside, chef Dustin Gardner is midway through this week's farm dinner series, a $40, 4-course tasting menu (an additional $25 for a beverage pairing) showcasing favorite local farms.
Mr. Gardner pointed out a few favorites, namely, the blackberry gazpacho served with macadamia nuts, yogurt and sunflower sprouts in the first course that includes a tuna taco, ramp kimchi, tempura-fried peach, shiso aioli and apple slaw.
He also said the walleye course is on point, served with a corn and shrimp dumpling, heirloom tomatoes and lacinato kale. The tasting menu is available to customers through July 17. For more information and the menu, click here.
2. Though it had only been open since late January, Circolo
, Lounge 88
and Stogies Cigar Bar
has indeed closed. Ron Sofranko of Sofranko Advisory Group LLC said he had never seen such a quick open and close in all of his years in the business.
With Mr. Sofranko and others as investors, Troy Potteiger worked with a team to put together over $1 million in financing to build out the former Mullen's space. The building at 2100 East Carson will go back on the market, confirmed Mr. Sofranko.
3. And in quick-hits: Gateway Clipper
now offers a Sunday brunch cruise, with boarding at 11 a.m. and the cruise from 12 to 1:30 p.m. Adults pay $32 per person for tickets.
The July 30 "Shop Late in Lawrenceville," sweetens the evening with free pastries and desserts from local bakeries at multiple stores starting at 6 p.m. while supplies last. Post-Gazette photo