2216 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA | Directions 1522240.452602 -79.981706
Neighborhoods: Strip District
Best Lounge in Pittsburgh for Live Jazz – Live jazz in Pittsburgh is experiencing a "Renaissance" and although the overall following is not as strong as it used to be, it is refreshing to see so many new establishments hosting Live Jazz nights. The Firehouse Lounge has one of my favorite Pittsburgh performers, Etta Cox, on Thursday nights. I have not been to the Firehouse on one of the weekend nights, but I will tell you that this is one of the most beautiful spaces in the city. The staff is friendly, go twice and they'll remember your name, the food is excellent (try the burgers), and how can you beat 1/2 off of wine bottles? The best part about this jazz night is that you can still hear yourself talk and you don't leave smelling like cigarettes, a big bonus.
The Firehouse Lounge is a perfect place for a first date or a night out with a group. Thursdays are great for an older audience especially lovers of jazz.
great food, great service – Great food and wonderful service! Can't wait to go back in September when the dessert bar opens! My husband and I enjoyed our anniversary at the firehouse lounge...had a bottle of wine (1/2 price on Thursdays) and some really tasty appetizers along with some nice jazz music. Jessica was an awesome server. We'll definitely go back!
Losing what made it great... – My friends and I used to crave Firehouse nights out...before it began going down the ominous road that many failed clubs/lounges in Pittsburgh have followed.
In the past: great vibe- alternative/professional/hipsters- a great mix in general. Stiff drinks. The music ranged from fun top 40's to house to hip hop. Steel City Funk used to spin great house music in one of the rooms while the other room would have hip hop/dance music going on. The crowds moved freely back and forth and you were always meeting interesting people.
Current: In our last 3 visits spread out over the past 3 months, the only thing that remains from above are the stiff drinks. The crowd has gone ghetto-fabulous and music is bad hip hop in both rooms. Other fun clubs in the past have gone this way and are either gone or empty....Touch, Deja Vu, Pure to name a few. One can only wonder if Firehouse is going to follow this trend.
I'd love to give this place a great review but I can only hope that some its unique characteristics that made it so much fun aren't permanently lost.
Best Customer Service and Lounge Food – I just moved to Pittsburgh from Chicago, and so far this has to be the best thing this old steel town has going for it in the nightlife department. It's across the street from my house, so it didn't take long for me to stumble upon it's large wooden doors and inviting atmosphere. Perhaps I lucked out on the night I was there, but the owner navigated me through their drink menu, and I was shocked to see they were using products like acai juice, orange blossom water, and marmelades in their drinks rather than what I found on my first night in the "burgh" puckers and light beer. The crowd was pleasantly mixed at the Firehouse, and they have just expanded their menu to include plates suitable for sharing. I tried a pizzette and frittes , as a quick notes the frittes are perhaps the best I've had in a really long time, and then finished with a bananas foster wonton which was a huge surprise. The traditional country club dessert was dressed up as classic Chinese street food and served with a trio of mouth watering sauces, my favorite was the cassis-strawberry sauce. I was told they are opening a dessert lounge soon!
Now on to the cocktails. I'm actually a beer girl so it takes a lot of convincing to not explore what is on the taps, but per the owner's suggestion I started with a sidecar and ended with a drink called a "label who*e" how could I resist such a name? Both were made with the freshest ingredients and I was told they actually make all of their own sours from scratch. Perhaps that's why I never resorted back to a Lagunitas, but either way the drinks were so good and they were not overly sweet which is a big plus in my book.
I know the Firehouse has a great reputation for it's nightlife and after 10 crowd, but it really surprises me that it doesn't attract more city dwellers for light bites and happy hour. Then again, does anyone actually go out during the week in Pittsburgh who is over 25?
OK choice in the Strip District – Friendly service. Patrons slightly above average for the Strip District. Creative bar-food menu.....the taste is just "OK" though.
Best Champagne List – I cannot say enough about this little gem. I was pleasantly surprised when our server told us they have the largest selection of champagne and sparkling wines in W.PA, I didn't think anyone cared! And the range of products offered is impressive. Bottles range from $25-$600 and the selection is well rounded with roses, vintage, non vintage, and even a few rare options such as a Perrier Jouet Rose (VERY hard to find).
We also had an opportunity to try a few small items from the menu and we were very pleased. My favorite were the crab cakes and kielbasa and sauerkraut spring rolls. Others at the table enjoyed the Buffalo Chicken Dip (which is apparently their #1 seller and the owner's mom's recipe) and the artichoke fondue which was light and delightful.
I have attended multiple private events at the Firehouse and would recommend this place to anyone who is looking to celebrate.
Editorial Review by Christy Buena – Warm lounge in the historic Strip District features creative Italian cuisine including seared sirloin, seafood and bruschetta.
Distinctively Different – After reading a number of reviews about the Firehouse Lounge, I mustered up the nerve to check it out. I chose to go on a week night because I'm not much of one for large groups (aka trendy spots) in Pittsburgh because they tend to be too young. My girlfriends and I were pleasantly surprised when we visited on a Thursday evening to find they had a "girls night out" without a line of "old men" at the bar. Dean of Shadyside salon was offering spa manicures, rather than just a polish change and we all had multiple martinis & glasses of champagne for less than $20 each! We had such great service topped with a beautiful atmosphere and delcicious drinks, that I would recommend this place to anyone of any age group. For the first time in years, I was able to coordinate a night out and not hear a single complaint from the group.
Fun and Funky – I love going here. My friends and I make it a priority to meet for a Happy Hour here at least once a month. The atmosphere is great and it is usually much less crowded than the college bars on the South Side. It is a great place to go after work for a few drinks and appetizers. I would recommend this to anyone!
Best Week Nights – I kept hearing about The Firehouse Lounge through friends, but with a hectic work schedule, often find it hard to make it out. I had some out of town guests and didn't want them becomming stir crazy at my apartment, so I figured what the heck and paid a visit to what I kept hearing was THE place to go in Pittsburgh. We went on a Tuesday night, and they happened to have a "MOVIE & MOJITO" night with no cover and free popcorn! When I asked "why mojitos?" the friendly bartender said "we don't want to be shaking martinis, it makes a lot of noise & then you can't hear the movie" We all got a kick out of this!
The atmosphere is really comfortable and welcoming, but it was also incredibly beautiful. There was a perfect size crowd for a week night, and the staff was incredibly attentive. We had a few bites to eat, and we were all pleasantly surprised that Kielbasa & Sauerkraut would taste so great in a spring roll. Their menu is very inventive, a twist on many of my favorite bar foods, but you could tell everything was REALLY fresh and made to order.
The bartender also told us about how great the music is on the weekends, so I can't wait to check it out again. This lounge should be ranked the top bar in Pittsburgh for a number of reasons. If you don't believe me, then go see for yourself.
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