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Point Brugge Cafe - Pittsburgh , PA
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NAVIGATION: Home > Beer Place Search > PA > Pittsburgh > Point Brugge Cafe
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Type: Beer Bar
Point Brugge Cafe
Overall: Great    Score: 80 / 100
401 Hastings Street
Pittsburgh , PA 15206
United States
(412) 441-3334
Listed Since: March 2005
Last Updated: September 2006
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14 Reviews / 9 Photos
hours of operation
Sun 12:00PM - 90:0PM
Mon CLOSED
Tue 11:00AM - 10:00PM
Wed 11:00AM - 10:00PM
Thu 11:00AM - 10:00PM
Fri 11:00AM - 11:00PM
Sat 11:00AM - 11:00PM

alternatives
(51 within 5 miles)
1) Kelly's Bar and Lounge
(0 mile)

2) Casbah Mediterranean Kitchen and Wine Bar
(0 mile)

3) Red Room Cafe and Lounge
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4) Salt of the Earth
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5) Mad Mex
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6) Sharp Edge Beer Emporium
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7) East End Brewing Company
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within 5 miles
1) Appletree Bed & Breakfast
2) Le Domanine
3) Morning Glory Bed & Breakfast
nearby hotels
w/ online reservations
1) BEST WESTERN UNIVERSITY CENTER
2) MORNING GLORY INN
3) RESIDENCE INN PITTSBURGH
4) SUNNYLEDGE BOUTIQUE HOTEL
(historic places)
within 5 miles
1) Allerdice, Taylor, High School
2) Alpha Terrace Historic District
3) Arsenal Junior High School
4) Baxter High School
5) Bayard School
6) Beulah Presbyterian Church
7) Bindley Hardware Company Building
8) Birmingham Public School
9) Bost Building
10) Butler Street Gatehouse
11) Carnegie Free Library Of Braddock
12) Colfax Elementary School
13) Consolidated Ice Company Factory No. 2
14) Dilworth Elementary School
15) East Liberty Market
16) Evergreen Hamlet
17) Fifth Avenue High School
18) Fort Pitt Elementary School
19) Fortieth Street Bridge
20) Foster School
21) Frick, Henry Clay, Training School for Teachers
22) Fulton Elementary School
23) Gardner-Bailey House
24) Greenfield Elementary School
25) Highland Building
26) Highland Towers Apartments
27) Homestead High-Level Bridge
28) Homestead Pennsylvania Railroad Station
29) Hunt Armory
30) Larimer School
31) Lawrence Public School
32) Liberty School No. 4, Friendship Building
33) Lightner, Isaac, House
34) Lincoln Elementary School
35) Linden Avenue School
36) Longfellow School
37) Madison Elementary School
38) Main Building, U.S. Bureau of Mines
39) McCleary Elementary School
40) Moreland-Hoffstot House
41) Morse, Samuel F. B., School
42) Oakland Public School
43) Old Heidelberg Apartments
44) Park Place School
45) Pennsylvania Railroad Station-Wilkinsburg
46) Phipps Conservatory
47) Pittsburgh Athletic Association Building
48) Reymer Brothers Candy Factory
49) Rodef Shalom Temple
50) Schenley High School
51) Scott, James, House
52) Sellers House
53) Shadyside Presbyterian Church
54) Singer, John F., House
55) Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall
56) Springfield Public School
57) St. Nicholas Croatian Church
58) St. Stanislaus Kostka Roman Catholic Church
59) Sterrett Sub-District School
60) Tuberculosis Hospital of Pittsburgh
61) Washington Vocational School
62) Westinghouse High School
63) Whitehill-- Gleason Motors
64) Wightman School
65) Woods, John, House
66) Woolslair Elementary School
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(within 2 miles)
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42) Elbow Room
43) Enrico Biscotti Co
44) Enrico's Tazza D'Oro
45) Ernies Diner
46) Fajita Grill
47) Flash's Ii
48) Flora's Grill & Grocery
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52) Grace Market
53) Gran Canal Caffe
54) Happy Family Restaurant
55) Harris Grill
56) Hook Fish & Chicken
57) Insomniacs Coffee Lounge
58) J Harris Grill
59) Jens Juice Joint
60) Jimmy G's
61) Jimmy Tsang's Chinese Rstrnt
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64) Kfc
65) Kfc
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72) Le Perroquet
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77) Mc Donald's
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95) Paulette's Coffee Shop
96) Peoples Restaurant
97) Peppi's At The Park
98) Perry's Coffee & Ice Cream
99) Piccolo Cafe
100) Pino's Mercato
101) Pita Garden
102) Pittsburgh Deli Co
103) Pizza Hut
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Overall Average User Rating
Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Great Great Awesome! Great Great
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Individual User Reviews
Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
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Dear Enemy,

One update to your otherwise excellent analysis. You probably haven't been in D's since it remodeled. The beer coolers are along the back wall now; what used to be the cave is an office. They expanded into the storefront to the left to provide more dining space and put the new cave (actually more of a regular room now) behind that. Still carrying 900 or so beers.

We were there the day of the World Cup final and they had a pretty good crowd watching the game on Sunday afternoon.

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from Mark Stacy Mark Stacy, Morgantown, WV
(07/23/2006)

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"I'm not sure why Pittsburgh is home to excellent Belgian beer and food establishments (see also The Creekhouse), but I'm hoping they'll survive and thrive until I get back to town!"

(I apologize in advance to everyone else for the long-winded response that is about to follow, but since there is no apparent way to respond privately, I'll post it here. Those who are not interested in a treatise on Pittsburgh's beer scene are invited to scroll past this review.)

Pittsburgh has a deserved reputation as a town that refuses to gentrify, yuppify, "metrosexualize," or whatever. It has no interest in urban-chic glitz, glamour and fake smiles/tans/implants on the one hand, nor new-age tree-hugging flannel-wearing neo-hippyism on the other. It's a tired old city that's a bit rough on the edges even as it retains conspicuous evidence of fortunes made during its industrial heyday. Old money, traditional blue-collar values, neighbors looking out for each other, and standard contemporary urban problems -- that's Pittsburgh. And its residents fight hard to keep it that way (save the urban problems, but they take the good with the bad).

So it's no surprise that craft-beer fans who stumble upon into this place are baffled to discover that, despite Pittsburgh's great pains to resist neo-sophistication, it is one of the best craft-beer towns in the country. And Ken from Portland, I suspect you've only seen the half of it. The Creekhouse is actually an outpost of the flagship Sharp Edge Beer Emporium, which is about a mile from the Church Brew Works. If you're impressed with the Creekhouse, the original Sharp Edge is even better stocked (though only slightly so). Meanwhile, no self-respecting beer enthusiast would consider a trip to Pittsburgh complete without a visit to D's Six Pack & Dogz. When you first walk in, it looks like little more than a greasy-spoon hot dog stand. That is, until you walk in, look to your left, and find yourself face-to-face with a wall of stand-up beer fridges. And then if you're nosy and wander around, you discover the "cellar" in the back room, which is stocked with nearly ONE THOUSAND varieties of beer, and figure some 150 to 200 of those are Belgian.

As for why there is so much emphasis on Belgian beers, it relates to the European traditions that retain notable cachet on the East Coast, whereas out in Portland's neck of the woods, things are a bit more strictly American with perhaps slight Asian influences. The East Coast beer scene has a lot more emphasis on European imports than the West Coast, which is home to America's domestic craft-beer resurgence for the obvious reason that the Pacific Northwest is North America's primary hop-growing region. Those who live in the Pacific Northwest take for granted the endless selection of local breweries and brewpubs that are an integral part of the region's culture. The craft-brew culture isn't as well integrated in most other parts of the country. Even though every two-bit city now has at least one brewery or brewpub to call its own, many times they are more of an adjunct to the local culture and hospitality landscape, and often their beer doesn't measure up to that of just an average so-so Portland brewpub. Pittsburgh, being the western-most outpost of East Coast culture, brings a greater emphasis on European imports to its beer scene; and as European beer goes, few dispute that Belgium is to beer as France is to wine.

That is not to say that the East Coast does not have its own brewing scene. It is home to some of the nation's most vaunted craft breweries such as Dogfish Head, Victory and Weyerbrecher. Pittsburgh has a few of its own craft breweries, such as Penn, Church Brew Works, and the newcomer that's making waves, East End. There are a couple top-shelf beer destinations in Pittsburgh that give at least equal if not more space to regional craft breweries, namely Fat Head's and Smokin' Joe's on the South Side's famed Carson Street strip.

So the next time you're in Pittsburgh, be sure to take in as many of these top-notch beer destinations as you can; they are the hidden diamonds in Pittsburgh's zeoulsly-guarded rough. And yes, the Belgian places will still be there.

Cheers,

-The Enemy

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review Chicago, IL
(07/23/2006)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Great Great Great Great Great
I visited Point Brugge on July 13 while in town for the All-Star Game. It is a very nice neighborhood place -- bustling and noisy, but in a pleasant sort of way. Their tap beer selection was rather limited but their bottle selection (especially of Belgian-style beers) was impressive. In fact, it was fun for us to buy several different bottles and then share sips to see just how wide-ranging the few Belgian beers on the table could be.

If you go to Point Brugge, go for the the Brugge Ftires (Belgian fries). I don't care if you're watching your carbs (as I am) -- indulge yourself. I can't say I've ever had fries as good as these. I just hope they're as good in Belgium when I visit there this fall!

I also enjoyed a plate of Carbonnade Flamande (basically a Belgian pot roast medallion dish). The brown ale sauce in which it was cooked was excellent.

I'm not sure why Pittsburgh is home to excellent Belgian beer and food establishments (see also The Creekhouse), but I'm hoping they'll survive and thrive until I get back to town!

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from Ken Kane Ken Kane, Portland, OR
(07/17/2006)

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Nice article in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review about Point Brugge: http://pittsburghlive.com/x/style/fooddrink/cookingclass/s_415657.html

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from paris lundis paris lundis, Pittsburgh, PA
(01/24/2006)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Awesome! Awesome! Awesome! Great Awesome!
Let me start by saying my previous three or so attempts to get into Point Brugge for a meal and drinks were well worth it.

I finally got to Point Brugge and there was seating to be had. I visited around 4:30PM on Saturday October 15, 2005. A 65 degree fall day that was worthy of getting out on the bicycle and pedaling my 14 miles to Point Brugge- actually anytime and reason would be a good one. (I had trekked over to the East End to stop by Scott Smith's East End Brewing - mere 10 or so blocks from Point Brugge).

I sat outside Point Brugge to enjoy the my meal, beer and the wonderful weather. They have a nice patio area on the front of the building that seats safely under 20. The wind kicked up and the air felt like more chilled - fall-like so (the owner - I think) thoughtfully turned on the outside heating.

The menu here is large enough and varied. There is the Belgian theme mostly throughout. I opted for an appetizer and a main course. The appetized was tofu and mango - cooked - artfully displayed in a thin glaze of the liquid slurry of the ingredients. Delicious and rare - tofu? Being served as food in a restaurant? In Pittsburgh? Yes.

For a main course I had a mushroom pasta that was a heavier creame sauce (white) with fresh veggies and a slice of a french like bread. The pasta was a very tasty compliment. Very good.

The beer selection at Point Brugge is wide and all the beers served are fine choices. Everything seems to be served in proper glassware here too. A rather large beer list for such a small restaurant. I had a bottle of Goose Island's Pere Jacques. What an excellent Belgian that I hadn't seen elsewhere. A number of the beers where ones I just haven't seen available in a any place in Pittsburgh or beyond.

Service was prompt and polite, even though I was dressed down (shorts and tank with sandals). The waitress held my pasta back in the kitchen while I dragged on enjoying the appetizer. When it arrived it was fresh and warm - very good food delivery flow, something that seems to be a dying art.

I highly recommend giving Point Brugge a visit. I will be back soon to try more of the delicious beers and maybe I'll leave room for dessert.

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from paris lundis paris lundis, Pittsburgh, PA
(10/15/2005)

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That's actually a pretty good description - "slummed out in a quiet sort of way". The block is amazingly quiet.

Regarding how I do it every day without getting depressed??? Well, let me put it to you this way: I have my own brewery, and I BREW BEER for a living. Does that help? It sure helps me! And yes, I too hope to be in a nicer neighborhood someday, but without a low rent district like this one, this would never have been possible. Next time you're in town, stop by and taste some of the new beers - maybe I can improve my "Selection" stats!

I'm open to the public twice a week for "Growler Hours", Thursdays 5-7pm and Saturdays 2-4pm.

Cheers, Scott

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from Scott Smith Scott Smith, pittsburgh, PA
(10/15/2005)

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"The block level area isn't a slum by any means, but the neighboring houses aren't part of the desireable large compound homes that are on the blocks one back in each direction."

And yet modest homes on that very block are selling for 200 grand. That's big money in Pitt's stagnant/depressed real estate market. The restaurant is nice, the immediate neighborhood is nice and DEFINITELY not undesireable; I highly encourage Pitt residents to come on down and give 'em both a look.

Scott, I took a quick drive around a couple blocks where the brewery is. Man, that's some nasty sh*t. Rivals some of Chicago's finest slums. And yes, it does get even worse on the other side of the busway. At least the area around the brewery is slummed out in a quiet sort of way. Still, I don't know how you do it every day. I'd come home utterly depressed.

Cheers,

--The Enemy

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review Chicago, IL
(10/09/2005)

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Well, in my opinion, most of the real trouble spots are on the OTHER side of EEBC from Point Brugges. N. Pt. Breeze, while far from austentatious like it's Squirrel Hill and Shadyside neighbors, has a very diverse mix - some spiffy, some simple, and yes, some in pretty rough shape. I can't point to a single "crack house" South of the busway/railroad tracks though, and I'm all over that neighborhood almost every day.

I think Bill Peduto (local City Councilman) lives in this area on Hastings Street too.

Have I digressed long enough?

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from Scott Smith Scott Smith, pittsburgh, PA
(10/05/2005)

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Well I tried visiting Point Brugge Cafe again a few Saturdays ago. At dinner time (7PM), there was a 1 hour wait and the place was packed with far more than 25 people. Obviously this place is doing well.

Instead of waiting, we went to Pino's Italian eatery a half block away. Pino's had a 20 minute wait only.

Perhaps someday I can actually get into Point Brugge and enjoy. This makes the third time. Maybe next time.

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from paris lundis paris lundis, Pittsburgh, PA
(09/30/2005)

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I just want to clarify for my friend The Enemy.

I called the block Point Brugge anchors as undesireable. I stick by that. It's not *really* a business district - several disconnected places there and Point Brugge faces onto a seeming residential street. The area in general ranges from very desireable to plain bad. The area - Point Breeze ranges from the high priced places you mentioned to crackhouses and slums within the blocks between where this is and East End Brewing is. Same general subsection of Pittsburgh.

Having said all this, Point Brugge is the nice place on it's block.

I'll take some photos in the next week or so when I finally get to dine at Point Brugge :)

The block level area isn't a slum by any means, but the neighboring houses aren't part of the desireable large compound homes that are on the blocks one back in each direction.

Hope that clarifies things. What it might fail to do, some photos will do.

All that is off topic though. I only provided this info because it's possible people could end up across Penn Avenue over on the other side of Point Breeze which is clearly less desireable and dangerous at times.

For all the danger Point Breeze provides some interesting haunts and resource including Point Brugge, East End Co-Op, Gatto's Cycles, Bike Pittsburgh and other real businesses. Certainly a revived part of the East End worth checking out.

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from paris lundis paris lundis, pittsburgh, PA
(04/21/2005)

Beer Quality Beer Selection Food Service Overall
Great Good N/A Great Good
Gouden Carolus, Spatan Franziskaner, Petrus Oud Bruin and Victory Prima Pils: these are your four tap selections. At least none of the precious few lines are wasted on unworthy products. Bottle selection is more expansive with about 50 selections or so from regional and national craft brews and some higher-end European beers. Among the bottle selections, as Paris mentioned, a handful of 750ml bottles of Ommengang, Duvel, Delerium, Victory Golden Monkey, et cetera. This is a restaurant first and foremost and not a beer bar in the strict sense. But this is, after all, a Belgian restaurant so it’s only appropriate that you have a high-end beer with your meal in place of wine. Point Brugge makes certain that diners have a quality selection to choose from and bar patrons benefit as a result.

On a side note, with all due respect to Paris and the hard work he puts in to this website, I must take stong exception to his characterization of this being an “undesirable” area. I used to live a block and a half from Point Brugge (then Senator’s) and the neighborhood provided a higher quality of life at a lower cost than any place I’ve ever lived in my adult life. I routinely took walks at 3am without ever fearing for my safety. Within a three-block radius of Point Brugge are houses for sale commanding asking prices anywhere from $175,000 to $575,000. Houses on Linden Avenue, about 100 feet away, are particularly gorgeous. Also within that radius is Beechwood Boulevard where home values reach the $1,000,000 threshold. That’s pretty damn steep by Pittsburgh standards and these prices make clear that this is actually a rather desirable area. Sure, there are parts of Point Breeze that are charitably described as “undesirable,” but they are all found on the other side of Penn Highway. The core neighborhood around Point Brugge is in my opinion one of the most charming and well-manicured neighborhoods on the East End. Rest assured that patronizing Point Brugge and perusing the surrounding neighborhood will both be worth your while.

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from The Enemy The Enemy, Chicago, IL
(04/21/2005)

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Silly me didn't look to see if Point Brugge was open on Mondays.

I drove across town to discover the place closed on Monday. Yikes. The place looked interesting and we could see some large bottle such as Hennepin lining the bar back. Clean little new place with sharp edges. On a less desireable residential block with rather normal housing/undesireable.

We'll be back to give Point Brugge a fair shake. I never understood the closed Monday thing for restaurants. If people eat on Sunday and on Tuesday, surely they'd eat/drink on Monday.

It's worth noting the next place we went to was also closed on Mondays. 20 miles later we ended up at the very reliable Penn Brewery.

Here's to next time and finally getting to enjoy Point Brugge!

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from paris lundis paris lundis, pittsburgh, PA
(03/22/2005)

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Well good riddance to Senator's. That place was a haphazard mess.

I love that little strip along Reynolds (used to live two blocks from there) and this place looks like a very welcome addition to this cozy little business district. A return visit to my old stomping grounds may be in order to check this place out and grab a slice at Pino's and of course pay homage to the Church and the Sharp.

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from The Enemy The Enemy, Chicago, IL
(03/13/2005)

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An interesting and intimate Belgian-like cafe. Pittsburgh needed this and I've been meaning to get over there.

A nice write up in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette today: http://www.postgazette.com/pg/05070/469483.stm

Write Your Review Reply to this Review Report Review See more reviews from paris lundis paris lundis, pittsburgh, pa
(03/11/2005)





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