Root 174 is one of the newest and most talked about restaurants in Pittsburgh. It boasts an impressive and creative menu with out-of-the-box dishes and flavor combinations you won’t find at your average restaurant. You know a restaurant is doing something right when every review you read before you go says to order the brussel sprouts. Root 174 is also a BYOB which is a definite plus when you’re trying to save money and are a big fan of $12 bottles of wine.
When we arrived at Root 174, we were seated at a booth by the window and immediately started checking out that day’s specials written on a chalkboard at the back of the restaurant. We decided to start with an order of the scallops and a side of the brussel sprouts. The scallops were perfectly seared and sitting on a bed of sweet acorn squash hash, savory melt-in-your-mouth bites of beef cheek, and crushed hazlenuts. We gobbled them up.
The side of brussel sprouts was unlike any other brussel sprouts I had ever tasted. Because they were not only fried, they were served with a sweet bacon jam. Bacon.Jam. I tell you, it’s amazing and our waitress told me it was basically bacon, bourbon, and sugar—these are definitely something I’ll be trying to recreate at home. If you go to Root 174 and think you are being healthy by ordering the brussel sprouts, as a heads up—these are neither steamed nor healthy.
I had a hard time deciding what to order for my meal, but ended up choosing the chicken ranch buttermilk sausage with BBQ baked beans. The chicken sausage had a ranch flavor that wasn’t too overpowering and the baked beans had that smoky flavor that immediately reminded me of being at a summer BBQ. It was tasty and good, but I wasn’t blown away by this dish. But how exactly does a chef blow anyone away with sausage and beans? Maybe I should have ordered differently.
My date had the trout taco with crab salad over a black bean puree and as soon as I tasted it, I wanted to snag his plate and take the rest. The dish was inventive and fun. You see the “taco” wasn’t a tortilla, but a thin piece of breaded trout that held the creamy crab salad. Awesome! It was tell your foodie friends worthy, just like our appetizers.
After our dinner, we didn’t save any room for dessert, but next time I’ll be trying the PB&J cheesecake. The one thing about Root 174 is I think the prices are a little high, I don’t think chicken sausage and baked beans should be 18 bucks a pop. Even though it was a little pricey, I had a really nice time at this new, trendy restaurant and I will definitely be back for more brussel sprouts and creative dishes.