Chris Clark, general manager of Superior Motors in Braddock, talked with us about the restaurant and its recent Food & Wine Restaurants of the Year honor.
PITTSBURGH BEAUTIFUL: Can you tell us a bit about Superior Motors? What kind of cuisine do you sell, how did the idea for it come about?
CHRIS CLARK: Superior Motors began as a Kickstarter Campaign that raised almost $300,000 to start the restaurant in Braddock. It was a while in the making—there were various site problems that held the project up until Gregg Kander came in to help us to to get restarted.
PB: Why did you choose Braddock to open Superior Motors?
CC: Kevin Sousa and Mayor John Fetterman chose Braddock before I got involved. The mayor lives upstairs and the chef lives across from the first Carnegie Library in Braddock. The chef is from McKees Rocks and he has a working class mindset from his upbringing. I’m sure that this influenced his decision.
PB: What was your reaction when you found out about your Food & Wine honor?
CC: We were honored. We have the utmost respect for what Food & Wine does for our industry so it’s an honor that we don’t take lightly.
PB: Did you always want to be involved in the hospitality and restaurant business? What was your first job that got you passionate about restaurant work?
CC: I got hired as a server on my 18th birthday in the Strip District. I was in the business throughout college. Strangely, when I moved to NYC to become a journalist the day before 9/11 the jobs dried up and I had to find work in restaurants. I worked at some pretty heavy hitters and realized that restaurants can be executed at a very high level. I had never seen it done on this high of a level before and I found my calling.
PB: What is your favorite dish at Superior Motors?
CC: I don’t have a favorite but the one that I most often recommend is the seared cobia with lime and tomatillo broth, jalapeño and avocado mousse frozen in liquid nitrogen.
PB: Do you have any advice for aspiring Pittsburgh restaurateurs?
CC: Don’t settle. If you have an original voice, a strong vision, good food and service then you will be heard.
PB: What do you think makes Pittsburgh such a beautiful and unique city?
CC: The working class roots give it character but its citizens are not afraid of change.