Carbonara will replace concertos at a former piano store on Penn Avenue, Downtown.
The owners of Nicholas Coffee and Sienna Sulla Piazza, both in Market Square, are joining forces to open a three-story restaurant at the former Trombino Piano Gallerie at 942 Penn Ave., perhaps as early as this fall.
Nick Nicholas, the Nicholas Coffee owner, purchased the two-story building in December for $920,000 with plans to convert it into a restaurant.
The new eatery, to be called Sienna Mercato, which is Italian for "marketplace," will feature two floors of dining, plus a rooftop bar and restaurant with views of the U.S. Steel Tower and other prominent Grant Street buildings. Stairs will transport diners between floors, while a new elevator will whisk them from street level to the roof.
"This isn't going to be a simple project. It's pretty elaborate. It's going to be unique enough that there won't be anything like it Downtown," Mr. Nicholas said.
In a statement, the owners of Sienna Mercato are promising to have "three distinct, yet complementary dining destinations under one roof." Matthew Porco, executive chief at Sienna Sulla Piazza, will oversee culinary aspects at the new location.
"Sienna Sulla Piazza is excited to expand our culinary expertise from Market Square to the Cultural District. The passion we have for providing quality food and drink in an urban-chic environment will be evident in all aspects of Sienna Mercato. We look forward in being part of the growth of Downtown Pittsburgh's expanding dining community," said Mike McCoy, general manager of both restaurants.
In late 2011, the Trombino Piano Gallerie left Downtown. Over the decades, the store hosted recitals and master classes and served as rehearsal space for the likes of Jonathan Biss and Billy Joel.
Mr. Nicholas said the restaurant, part of the Penn-Liberty historic district, could open in October, pending approval of the plans by the city Historic Review Commission. He said he decided to move into the Cultural District after concentrating for years on Market Square because of the synergy created by apartment developments, hotels, restaurants and the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.
"I think that's a viable area that's going to continue to flourish, those two blocks of Penn Avenue going to the convention center," he said. "Besides Market Square, that's probably another area that can develop into more entertainment in the evening."
Mark Belko: email@example.com or 412-263-1262.