Richard DeShantz is the Chef/Owner of Richard DeShantz Restaurant Group in Pittsburgh, PA.
As a proud Pittsburgh native, DeShantz has worked to elevate the culinary landscape of his hometown and brings creativity and innovation to Pittsburgh’s Cultural District neighborhood through his four restaurants: Meat & Potatoes, a seasonally-inspired gastropub; Butcher and the Rye, an acclaimed rustic Americana restaurant with shareable plates and an extensive whiskey program; and täkō, a lively taqueria serving inventive Mexican street food with a tequila focused beverage program; Pork & Beans, the first collaboration with Chef/Partner Keith Fuller, a Texas-inspired BBQ and smokehouse serving up a daily selection of smoked meat with signature sauces and home style sides.
Meat & Potatoes and täkō also have concessions within the PPG Paints Arena.
“Chef DeShantz has created three unique restaurants that have helped reorient the focus from steel mills to the next food city.”
For as long as he can remember, DeShantz had a passion for art. He decided to take art classes in Pittsburgh but soon realized that cooking was another way to express his creativity and enrolled at the Pennsylvania Institute of Culinary Arts. Throughout culinary school, DeShantz worked as a line cook at the acclaimed Hyeholde Restaurant in Pittsburgh under Chef Andrew Lise and was exposed to a new spectrum of the culinary arts he had never before seen. What had begun as an outlet for creativity, soon grew into a passion for food and hospitality.
Upon graduation, DeShantz spent his time traveling and working in restaurants across the country. From Chicago to Colorado, Washington D.C. and Michigan – he honed his techniques and studied under some of the top chefs in the country including famed chef Charlie Trotter.
After returning to Pittsburgh in the early 2000s, DeShantz opened Mediterra Bakehouse, where he managed operations and baked fresh bread and pastries daily. After four years, he was eager to bring more imagination into his kitchen and opened Café Richard in Pittsburgh’s Strip District. Two years later, he opened his first fine dining establishment called American Bistro Nine on Nine.
“I like dealing with small individual farms. People that specialize in one ingredient. People that have the same passions as I do. “
As Pittsburgh’s dining scene began to change, so did DeShantz. After selling all three concepts, he was ready to open something on his own. In 2011, DeShantz opened the doors to his flagship restaurant, Meat & Potatoes. The restaurant quickly received rave reviews, and was named “Best Gastropub in the U.S.” by Food & Wine. In 2013, Richard opened Butcher and the Rye, which was nominated two consecutive years in a row for “Outstanding Bar Program” by the James Beard Foundation, and was featured by Bon Appétit as part of the “Steel City Renaissance.” In spring 2015, DeShantz opened täkō, a street-fusion taco shop focusing on fresh ingredients and chef-driven tacos. Chef DeShantz’s celebrated restaurants and bars have also appeared on national television on Cooking Channel “Chuck’s Eat the Street,” and Travel Channel “Steak Paradise.”
DeShantz brings creativity and innovation to Pittsburgh’s Cultural District neighborhood. He continues to elevate his hometown’s culinary credibility by focusing on farm fresh ingredients and pushing boundaries. In 2016, Richard DeShantz Restaurant Group opened Pork & Beans, its fourth concept and first collaboration with Chef/Partner Keith Fuller.
When DeShantz is not in the kitchen, he enjoys drawing, skiing and running.