Stagioni is where a terrific and more upscale French restaurant (Le Pommier) used to be on the city’s South Side. I first learned about it a while ago while passing by on Carson Street. However, like many places I forget about until I’m reminded again, I want to dine there. I ended up having off a couple of Sundays during the holidays and so Stagioni was at the top of my list of places I wanted to go for brunch.
Although I had dined at Le Pommier years ago, it seemed that the owners of Stagioni kept the interior somewhat the same. It’s housed in what appears to be a historic building from the late 19th/early 20th centuries (as many on the South Side are) and is a relatively small space, consisting of only two rooms with tables (think: very intimate). You can make reservations through the website; you are then emailed a confirmation (with limited dining space, I would definitely recommend doing this).
While Stagioni is an Italian eatery for lunch and dinner, its brunch offerings are more Continental. D started off by ordering a spiked coffee (it was incredibly sweet which made me enjoy my taste immensely since I am not a coffee drinker). We were also given a plate of delicious coffee bread and scones accompanied by three different spreads-a butter and two marmalades.
D went with a perennial brunch favorite of his, Steak and Eggs ($16) that came with spicy potato hash and grilled bread. He enjoyed his thoroughly to say the least.
I went with the Pistachio Waffle that featured a cherry drizzle glaze and whipped cream (as Stagioni changes their menu quite regularly this doesn’t appear to be on the current menu). While sometimes I am leery of sweet brunch offerings (you feel as if you’re eating dessert for breakfast), this had just the right amount of sweetness in it; good but not overpowering. I also ordered a side of pancetta, an Italian bacon made of pork belly meat that is salt cured and spiced with black pepper among others. This was the first time I had strictly pancetta (as in not in something else) and I liked it. I don’t think I could consume copious amounts of it but for a side when eating it with a waffle, it was good.
The brunch menu at Stagioni is on the “eggs heavy” side as I saw a Yelp reviewer note and yet I feel this is more representative of what you would find in Italy (not that Italy does “brunch” but many European countries are big into having eggs served as the main course). There are enough places in Pittsburgh and other cities that offer disgustingly rich brunch main courses so I don’t necessarily see anything wrong with this.
I really enjoyed my first dining experience at Stagioni and honestly, it was one of the best brunch experiences I had had in a while. Sometimes the tiny outfits, the one with limited tables and a nontraditional look to them, are the best spots.
2104 East Carson Street | Pittsburgh, PA