Pittsburgh Restaurant Scene
Have you ever wanted to dine “off the beaten path”? Do you love driving through rural farmland on windy and narrow roads? Is your idea of comfort food, classic dishes served in a comfortable atmosphere? If you have answered yes to any of those questions they may we suggest a restaurant you may not know of, Clifford’s Restaurant. This place has been around since 1991, but it feels like it has been there for much longer. Located in Evans City nestled in between farms, cornfields and people’s houses; when you walk through the front door it feels like you are walking in to Grandma’s house. The restaurant is a huge brick building that almost looks like someone’s house, odds are you will see a cat wandering around the parking lot. When you walk in it feels warm and inviting, the décor is rustic and simple; white linen table tops, exposed brick, and old barn windows on the wall.
After you have been seated you will be greeted by Valerie (she runs the show), be ready to listen because she is about to tell you the evenings specials. On any given night they feature 2 soups, 2-3 apps and 3-5 entrees; and those are just the specials, they have a full printed menu as well! We have been to Clifford’s 4 times and almost exclusively order from the specials menu. If you are looking for artsy plating, crazy flavor combos, sous vide cooking, and hipsters then you are in the wrong place. This is comfort food at its finest; think Prime Rib, Chicken Romano, Fresh Fish, Crab Cakes, Steaks, and Pasta. This place even has homemade Scalloped Potatoes. Tell us the last time you saw those on a menu! FYI, the scalloped potatoes are on a whole new level of delicious. Every thing here is home made and served piping hot.
We are dining out with the whole family tonight, D and her mother along with my parents and little sister. Even my picky as hell sister and mom love this place, so that should let you know how good the meal is going to be. We always order a ton of food here and plan to have a bunch of leftovers. For our apps we ordered the pepperoni and cheese bread, artichoke dip and foie gras. I’m going to avoid the debate on foie gras being cruel or not, D and I find it delicious and we do not support restaurants being threatened and vandalized because they serve it. Here it is served with a cream sauce on one side and a berry sauce on the other, the foie is creamy on the inside and has a nice crispy skin. My dad tried it and enjoyed it, even my sister tried it, didn’t hate it, but at least she still tried. Our mothers had no interest in trying it, just more for us. The pepperoni bread and artichoke dip don’t really need much describing, very traditional and very delicious. While they are bringing out the apps they also serve awesome pretzel bread and fresh from the oven dinner rolls and they can be a meal in themselves. A huge plus is that the butter they serve is room temperature and soft, the way it should be!
All entrees here are served with a choice of salad or soup. Everyone but my sister ordered from the specials menu. She got the chicken Romano, with mashed potatoes. D and her Mother ordered the Prime Rib, (pictured) my mother ordered the Beef Tips, my dad ordered the trout stuffed with crabmeat and I had the Osso Buco. (pictured) All of the specials are fantastic. We have never had a single complaint about our meals here; that is impressive. Another nice touch here is that along with each entrée they serve stewed tomatoes and squash. That may not sound appetizing but trust us, they are out of this world! Serve a bowl of the tomatoes and squash with their warm bread and butter and you have a meal right there. We do our best to finish as much as we can but there are always doggy bags on the table. Even though we are stuffed it is next to impossible not to order dessert here! We had crème brulee, banana bread pudding and peanut butter mousse pie. All of them were as outstanding as the rest of the meal.
A few special notes about this place, first, make reservations in advanced! This place books up really fast. Next, be ready to spend a good bit of money, this place ain’t cheap; a great meal never is. Feel free to bring some wine or beer with you because this place is BYOB, and no corkage or glass fee! Also, don’t be surprised if you get lost the first time trying to find it, just consider it part of the fun of getting there. Eating here is different than most places, you almost feel like you are in on some secret dining club. The scenery is absolutely gorgeous here, we usually wonder around the place before heading in to eat. So if you are willing to travel away from the normal dining spots and spend a little more when you get there, Clifford’s is waiting to serve you. Enjoy!
514 Upper Harmony Rd
Evans City, PA 16033
Reservations are highly recommended!
Hours are seasonal and are subject to change.
Closed Monday and Tuesday