Bar, Eatery

2000 Smallman Street
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 15222-4425
United States

(412) 261-6565 | map

View: Place Reviews
Reviews: 4 | Ratings: 12 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by brentk56:
Photo of brentk56
brentk56 from North Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +4.3%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 5

Kaya is a Cuban-Latino fusion restaurant with a very creative menu. While the bee list is a B+, and you will find many acceptable choices (I waffled between the Victory Storm King and the Bell's Kalamazoo), the real draw here is the hip crowd and the food.

Built around a bar, the restaurant only has 20 or so tables that encircle the bar as an afterthought. Although the theme is Latino, the art on the walls is African, ranging from masks to large wooden sculptures to textile and metal wall hangings.

The principal chef is a woman who has just had a baby and was absent the night I ate there. But it is clear that this woman has a very interesting vision for food. I had a tomato/red pepper bisque with a dollop of chipotle flavored ice cream and followed that with a marinated pork loin that featured about eight slices of loin surrounding a piece of pork belly that had been braised in apple cider (and if you don't know about pork belly, you should) and topped with a chopped melee of peppers, ham, onions and sweet potato. Obviously, this ain't your typical brew pub food.

However, this is the type of restaurant I like to see - an inventive chef, a casual but thoughtful atmosphere and a good beer list to complement the wines and mixed drinks. We need more places like this so I recommend Kaya without hesitation for those who are interested in food and beer.

Feb 23, 2007
More User Reviews:
Photo of slasich
slasich from Pennsylvania

3.88/5  rDev -7.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4

May 16, 2020
Photo of cratez
cratez from Canada

4.2/5  rDev 0%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4

What I had: Victory Bavarian Spalt Select IPA and Sly Fox Royal Weisse on tap, Crispy Fish Tacos, Conch Chowder, Slow Cooked Pork & Banana Sandwich and white wine for my better half.

What I liked: Quiet and relaxed vibe during the day, attentive service, quirky decor, exceptional food, chatty patrons, comfortable bar, fair prices.

What I disliked: Given the quality of the food, it’d be nice to see them axe the handful of macro taps in favour of an all-craft lineup.

Would I go back? You bet!

Overall Rating: 84

Jan 29, 2020
Photo of seanchai
seanchai from Virginia

4.34/5  rDev +3.3%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.25 | food: 4.5

Dec 29, 2018
Photo of greg4579
greg4579 from Pennsylvania

4.28/5  rDev +1.9%
vibe: 4.25 | quality: 4.25 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Jan 11, 2015
Photo of jmartinger
jmartinger from Pennsylvania

4.4/5  rDev +4.8%

Oct 18, 2014
Photo of misternebbie
misternebbie from Pennsylvania

3.32/5  rDev -21%

Sep 24, 2014
Photo of csmit942
csmit942 from Ohio

4/5  rDev -4.8%

Jun 05, 2014
Photo of

4/5  rDev -4.8%

You visited this place. Write a review.

Mar 14, 2014
Photo of ejimhof
ejimhof from Pennsylvania

5/5  rDev +19%

Oct 09, 2013
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek from West Virginia

4.53/5  rDev +7.9%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Kaya has a nice spread definitely nails the tropical vibe without going to overboard keeps it modern and trendy without being tacky, and it's hard to do that with tiki masks. Quality products here folks across the board from wines, beers, and locally produced food. Server was very nice we had a common friend from my hometown, which is always cool to have that "small world" conversation with a stranger. Brought a lady friend here to dine I was cashing in my $30 birthday gift certificate that allowed me to order the Tropical Paella while my lady opted for the Cuban Sandwich with the Sweet Potato fries (good pick). What did we drink Ayinger Ur Weisse, Celebrator Doppelbock, and a glass of Penn Weizen I was trying to lure my companion into trying the mojito to pair with the Cubano, but she didn't bite. Great Draft selection Penn, Ayinger, Rogue, Stone, Sierra Nevada, Anderson Valley, Great Lakes, East End, North Coast, Bell's and many more great draft selection and nice bottle mix. Overall great time I will definitely be back here any time I'm in the strip it should be a staple for anyone who digs paella or a caribbean flavor in generale. Keep in mind that bottles are a bit expensive and that happy hour half off drafts from 5-7, on average all drafts are about five bucks.

Sep 15, 2006
Photo of Dogbrick
Dogbrick from Ohio

4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4.5

Located in "The Strip" near the river in Pittsburgh, which is a market area with lots of fresh food, ethnic restaurants and artisans. Plenty of parking either on the street or in one of the pay lots at either end.

The interior has an interesting theme going. Lots of brick and yellow/orangue hues with an Aztec/Mayan theme with masks on the walls and tropical plants. The bar is along the right side with windows directly behind it to let in a good amount of light.

The beer selection here is decent, especially considering we were just there for lunch and not looking for beer. They have around 20 taps featuring selections from Stone (Arrogant Bastard), Southern Tier, Brooklyn, Heavyweight, Victory, GLBC etc. No macros to be seen. They also feature a good selection of bottles from all over. Regionals like Penn and Lancaster and other micros, and a lot of imports.

The service here was good on a weekend lunch hour. The server even made sure to tell me how to pour my bottle conditioned beer!

The food is pricey but good. Both the crab cake and jerked chicken sandwiches were excellent. Homemade sweet potato fries are interesting and good too.

Overall this restaurant probably has better beer selection than any of the bars in the Strip area, and is definitely worth a stop.

May 25, 2004
Kaya in Pittsburgh, PA
Place rating: 4.2 out of 5 with 12 ratings