Shopping >Zenith Antiques
Fantastic place for us!.
So it's weird to read some of the reviews below because my friend and I have had great experiences at Zenith in all regards!
We've always enjoyed the food a lot (just wish there were more choices and hours); the staff and owner have always been relaxed, friendly and attentive; and the goods in the store are stunningy, amazingly varied, interesting, and choice.
We've sold to and bought from with much success and appreciation on both sides, and always always enjoyed our dining at Zenith.
As with any business, of any sort, check it out at various times etc. and you're most likely recognize that there are bound to be "off" times or experiences. Don't let that stop you from giving it another try. In a relatively small and limited city like Pittsburgh (I'd been living in San Francisco for 20 years before coming back here), it's well worth it!
Excellent food at great price but staff oddities!. I went to Zenith with a bit of trepidation considering some of the reviews I read here with regard to staff members berating customers. I went in smiling and was polite lest I upset them. I liked the funky atmosphere and the menu. All the salads (and I tried a little of all them - some 10 or more) were great, flavorful and all selections were vegan. The entree (tofu lasagne) was generous, came out piping hot and had a rich hearty flavor. The desserts (again there were about 10 selections) were also vegan and quite good. They slice the various cakes thin so you can try multiple kinds. Everything was going well, the host was pleasant, our waitor was too, and then all of a sudden in the middle of our brunch we hear a male voice in the kitchen SCREAMING at someone who he was obviously angry with. The "f-word" was dropped and I had my 14 year old daughter with me so I did not appreciate this. It was rather bizarre. Everyone kind of looked at each other and a couple of waiters came out of the kitchen smirking. There are few really great vegetarian/vegan eateries in Pittsburgh and this is a good one but someone at this restaurant (or perhaps more than one person) seems to have an anger management problem. I would go again, definately, but I would warn my fellow diners that anything could happen!
I?ve been frequenting the Zenith for nearly two years and continue to be amazed by the ever morphing menu maintaining such a high quality. While certain dishes like the to-fishy are fixtures, every week something new worth trying gets added. The Sunday brunch desserts are the happy ending to the healthy indulgences of the buffet and main courses. The fresh fruit topped pancakes or eggs are always a treat.
As a fine food purveyor, I am accustomed to dropping loads of money eating out, but the pricing bracket along with the unique decor and atmosphere, make the Zenith a great second date destination. The intensity, fervor, and flavor all pick up quite a bit on Sunday during brunch, but typically the casual and relaxed attitude lends itself to a fantastic dining experience.
Meat-eaters will never even know they are limited because of the amount of choices and great number or curiosity peaking dishes available.
An unusual experience, buy the plates you eat from. I'd heard of hipsters referring to Zenith in different circles and finally got there myself. It's unlike any other place I've ever been in; in order to get to the dining room you have to pass through the antique store with all manner of barber chairs and bathtubs and lamps and vintage clothing (and costumes for rent, apparently). Atmospheric does not do the dining area justice; I was informed that if I liked the silverware/plates/table/chairs I was eating from/sitting on I could purchase them to keep. I passed on that but ordered their veggie burger. The bun was fresh and the burger was suprisingly thick. It sure was not meat but it had a flavor and texture all it's own; I could see craving one of these after some brews (too bad this place is not open at bar time). Eventually I'd like to try the brunch as that seems to be their signature meal. As a non-vegitarian I felt welcome and the service was adaquate (it was not too busy when I was there, maybe 2-4 tables full) and I appreciated the pitcher of water left by the waitress. It's pretty cheap for such unusual food in an unusual setting.
HOSTILE Staff, Beware!. Having recently moved here from NYC, I was happy to discover this funky little vegan restaurant. The atmosphere made up for the so so food. However, this Sunday at brunch I witnessed the MOST horrible display of hostility by either the owner or the manager. She viciously attacked a customer who was with her middle aged mother for breaking a zipper in a vintage, and therefore inherrently delicate, dress. The owner/manager then proceeded to chase the customers around the store (like a bul in a china shop), and accused the young lady of breaking the zipper on purpose in order to get a discount. She called the girl a "cow" several times, and strangely compared her to her own daughter who was "30 pounds skinnier than you". She screamed and demanded $20.00 for her dress with the broken zipper, which she successfully bullied out of them. I was MORTIFIED for the pair, who were apologetic and obviously totally shocked and confused to be attacked so brutally by this scary woman. Thankfully, one of her wait staff had the sense to apologize to those witnessing the ordeal for her behaviour. In short, a pleasant dining experience was totally ruined. I was appalled, and that's coming from a NYC vet who has experienced plenty of attitude! I will NEVER go back.
Poor to Average Food and Bad Service in a Cute, Funky Setting. Like another reviewer, I feel bad for not liking Zenith, but the food is really weak -- the kind of mushy, beige concoctions that give vegetarian dining a bad name. It's nice that there's an airy cafe in the back of a thrift store, nice that they try to provide veggie fare in highly carnivorous Pittsburgh, and nice that they offer a $10 two-course Sunday brunch in an area that's getting increasingly gentrified and expensive, but all that can't make up for lousy cooking and bi-polar waitstaff. Sorry, Zenith. For way better lunchtime vegetarian options, try Tamarind in Greentree, Kaya on the Strip or even Kassab's just down the street from Zenith.
Pittsburgh's Best Veggie Restaurant. I love Zenith. It's a place where vegetarians and non-veggies can both find something satisfying and delicious....Sunday brunch is wonderful and has an energy all it's own. Fantastic. Pittsburgh needs more restaurants that offer a diverse, vegetarian menu. Viva Zenith!
Good Food- Worst Service Ever. Ive been a server- even for so/so service I usually still leave 15-20%. Today, I was hoping to take my out of town friends to a fun and enjoyable lunch. We were all stunned when our server verbally attacked us (the second time) This wasn't the first time she had gotten angry- all because we were one the phone briefly with a possible joiner for tea and desert (which we skipped on)? We also had trouble getting our food the way we wanted it- very little attention, care/courtesy were given. Our experience was sour and embarrassed me as the person treating- was I really expected to tip for that? Apparently... on our way out we were confronted by the server and owner- and literally berated- effectively told they didn't care for our business (and those I would have referred). Too bad, food was good. My advice... order take out.
Not as good as you'd think, unfortunately. I regret writing average reviews for places, especially places as unique as the Zenith Tea Room. One thing on its side is that Zenith Tea Room is quite unique with its decor and menu. Another advantage is the offering of an extensive varieties of tea, and a great vegetarian offering, including non-dairy items. The hot tea I was supposed to be served was cold, the food was mediocre at best, and the service was unpleasant. I had the curry lentil soup, which was bland and watery, and the homemade fiesta burger, which was bland, very dry, and overcooked. I went with three other people, none of us the negative-type and all of us the food-loving type (all varieties!), and we all agreed it was at best an average experience, unfortunately.
A green vegan dream in a sea of bars..
Probably the best little vegetarian restaurant you haven't heard of. Located in the backroom of the larger, Zenith Antique store, this restaurant is a hidden gem for vegetarians and meat-eaters alike.
The Zenith Tea Room has such a steady customer base that the menu changes weekly, "so that the regulars won't get bored," says one waitress. The cheap and delicious fare, though geared toward vegetarians, will please all tastes. And all food can be made vegan upon request.
The decor itself is enough to distract you from the meal at hand. With furniture and accessories provided from the adjacent antique store, you'll feel like you've stepped into a cleaner version of your grandma's attic. The store features a wide assortment of goods from turn-of-the-century lamps to Cabbage Patch dolls to furniture that is used throughout the restaurant. Also, like the menu, the various art that hangs on the walls is ever-changing and available for sale.
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