Eat + Drink is Pop City’s weekly dive into the world of local consumables.
AVA Bar & Lounge moving to Oakland
AVA Bar & Lounge, which announced last week that it would close its location on South Highland Avenue in East Liberty and seek a new space, will move to 304 North Craig Street in Oakland in August.
The new spot, formerly Luna Bar, will allow AVA to expand to two floors and offer a parking lot for its customers at the corner of Craig and Center Avenue.
"It's just a better market for us," says AVA owner Justin Strong. "It's where we started."
Strong says the space's second floor will host AVA's events, such as jazz and open mic nights. The first floor will be a bar and lounge area.
Strong has launched a campaign
on the crowdfunding site Indiegogo, seeking to raise $35,000 in the next four weeks to help cover AVA's moving costs make the transition to the new location as seamless as possible.
Naya brings Syrian cuisine to Squirrel Hill
Radwa Ibrahim, who formerly owned Middle Eastern restaurant Tyma’z in the North Hills, has moved her operation to 2018 Murray Avenue in Squirrel Hill.
Her new venture, Naya, offers Syrian-style home cooked food along with her versions of Middle Eastern favorites, such as falafel, babaganoush and stuffed grape leaves.
Ibrahim, who opened Naya earlier this month, said that many of her regular Tyma’z customers have already made the trek into the city to continue enjoying her cooking.
Wigle Whiskey expanding to the North Side
, the Strip District-based distiller of local and organic spirits, has purchased a warehouse in the Spring Garden section of the North Side and will begin converting it into a barrelhouse.
“We were quickly running out of room, so we’ve been searching for a space for a while,” says Wigle’s Meredith Grelli. “The building fit all our needs and we love the neighborhood.”
The space, which occupies about 10,000 square feet at 1055 Spring Garden Avenue, is the former home of the Balestreire Produce Company. It will house Wigle’s barrels of aging spirits, its innovation lab and a state-of-the-art whiskey garden, thought to be the first of its kind in the country.
“We imagine it as this seasonal kind of space where we’d have community events and small concerts, and the garage would become kind of a bar area,” Grelli says.
Architectural firm Edge-studio will design the new space. Wigle has hired contractor Marty Marra to undertake the construction. Grelli says they hope to open the space in the summer of 2014.
North Side Sandwich Week kicks off
Thirteen locally owned and independent restaurants are taking part in the second annual North Side Sandwich Week
, which started yesterday and will run throgh June 23.
Elks Lodge #339 will host a sold-out sandwich sampler event tomorrow evening, at which attendees and celebrity judges will crown a new sandwich king or queen.
Each participating restaurant will hang a Sandwich Week banner, and customers can use their smartphones to scan QR codes in order to vote for their favorite sandwiches.
Writer: Matthew Wein
Sources: Justin Strong, Radwa Ibrahim, Meredith Grelli