5847 ellsworth ave, shadyside412.362.5656soba@bigburrito.com

City Paper: With new bar, Soba keeps pace with trends it helped establish

The City Paper’s Hal B. Klein checks out our new bar and lounge:

As higher-end cocktail bars become more commonplace in Pittsburgh, one of the city’s trendsetting stalwarts — Soba — is stepping up its game.

“Things were starting to get dated,” says longtime Soba barman Rob Hirst. The bar in Big Burrito Restaurant Group’s Shadyside restaurant hasn’t been updated since 2002, he notes.

Although Hirst’s cocktail menu is contemporary (he’s president of the Pittsburgh chapter of the Bartender’s Guild), the bar wasn’t set up for current cocktail-making trends. Today’s cocktail bars demand a lot more real estate, necessary to house their expanded array of herbs, bitters, syrups and infusions. And as Hirst admits, “The challenge [I’ve had] over the last five years is that these old-school bars were set up in a way that weren’t conducive to cocktail culture.”

Read the rest of the article here.