View of the fountain at the point with the city of Pittsburgh in the background

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Best Pittsburgh Biking Trails for Bites and Brews

Pittsburgh and the entire Western Pennsylvania area are great places for biking, with some incredible rails-to-trails that offer both urban rides and rural scenery. If you take those trails and stop at a few places to find some good food or grab a beer, you have the perfect afternoon in Pittsburgh. So, explore the best bike trails with food and beer in Pittsburgh with us.

The miles of trails around the city offer great views of downtown Pittsburgh, Point State Park, and the chance to explore neighborhoods such as the Strip District, North Side, and even Oakland. To help you explore and enjoy some great places to ride around the region, here is an updated list of the top biking trails in Western PA.

Pittsburgh and Western PA have developed a rather extensive network of rail trails, thanks to the rails-to-trails trend. And the food scene around Pittsburgh has grown. No longer a fish sandwich and beer town, the area has some great casual places serving creative and tasty casual food. And the brewery scene has never been better than now. In fact, the city ranks in the top 10 microbrewery cities in the country. It’s not just an Iron City town anymore.

Biking Trails In Pittsburgh With Food And Beer

#1 North Shore Trail with Strange Roots, Southern Tier, Dancing Gnome, or East End Brewing

The North Shore Bike Trail traverses the north side of the Allegheny and Ohio Rivers. It is part of the Three Rivers Heritage Trail and is very popular for biking, walking, and running in Pittsburgh. The main portion of the trail is approximately 6 miles long. Starting in the riverside town of Millvale (where the trailhead has ample parking), ride south along the river on a relatively flat paved trail. 

This area has several top-notch breweries located along the ride.

Strange Roots Experimental Ales is about 1/4 mile from the trailhead in Millvale. It offers creative (quirky, some might say) options such as PB&J, Eden Under Dusk, and Screaming Tangerine Wheat. The Pittsburgh Sandwich Society operates a full kitchen at this location. It’s a good place to stop for something unique food and beer.

At the midway point, you will find several places to eat and drink. A favorite is the Southern Tier Brewery—a block off the trail between PNC Park and Acrisure Stadium. Southern Tier is a New York-based brewery (not local), but it has a great list of beers on tap and good food, all with a perfect location and outdoor area to enjoy the afternoon.

Regrettably my personal favorite, Roundabout Brewery Pop-up Beer Garden, closed in April of 2024. Fortunately, the quirky outdoor space along the river saw the opening of a new beer garden from East End Brewing Company, a local maker of urban craft beers, in June of 2024. This beer garden is on the Ohio River portion of the trail. It is entirely outdoor seating in a gravel beer garden behind an old warehouse in an industrial area. It is right on the river, and you can bike to the entrance. The beer garden offers food from a rotation of food trucks (if La Palapa is the truck, you must stop; the empanadas and tacos are great). Hours are seasonal and vary, get more information here. They are usually open Thursday and Friday, 4 pm to 9 pm, Saturday and Sunday, 2 to 9 pm, but this is weather permitting.

If you venture a little north on the trail from Millvale (it’s a rough ride), you will come to the town of Sharpsburg, home to the Dancing Gnome brewery. It’s a great option to try out, but it is not directly along the trail. With so many places right along the trail this is one of the best Pittsburgh bike trails with food and beer.

#2 South Side Trail with Sly Fox or Hofbrauhaus

The Southside Trail runs from Station Square to McKeesport. Much of this trail is the GAP (Great Allegheny Passage trail, which runs 150 miles from Pittsburgh to Maryland). You can connect this trail to the North Shore trail by crossing the rivers via the Fort Duquesne Bridge and then the Fort Pitt Bridge. Once again, this trail is paved and a relatively flat ride. It also offers many food and beer options.

The first stop would be the Sly Fox Brewery & Pub at the Highline. This brewery is in a recently renovated industrial building just north of Station Square and is a great place to check out. With around 20 beers on tap and great food, you will enjoy stopping at this location along the trail. My one tip is cheesy bread—yummy. Learn more here.

Traveling further along the trail, you will find the Hofbrauhaus Pittsburgh, a huge German-themed brewery and restaurant. The outdoor beer garden has picnic tables and serves good German beer and food.

Trails Outside the City

#3 Panhandle Trail with Helicon Brewing

A great trail with an even better brewery at the start is the Panhandle Trail, which runs nearly 30 miles from Walker’s Mill to West Virginia. Park in the town of Oakdale and ride the path west toward West Virginia. It is a paved trail once you cross into Washington County (about 2 miles from the lot in Oakdale). This trail does have a slow and steady climb, but when you turn around, it will be all downhill! Helicon Brewing is located in Oakdale, right at the parking lot. It’s the perfect place at the end of the ride. You can end your ride with a nice beer and food from a local food truck. Oh, and if you like pinball, they have a ton of those inside! 

The Panhandle trail easily combines with the Montour Trail. The junction is about 3 miles from the Helicon Brewery.

#4 Freeport Butler Trail with Butler Brew Works

Another great trail is the Freeport Butler Trail, a beautiful trail in Butler County. It is paved, but no matter which end of the trail you start on, it will be uphill to the mid-point, so be prepared. At the halfway point, there is a cute cafe called the Derailleur Bike Shop & Cafe. But your real goal is the town of Butler, where you will find the Butler Brew Works. They have a ton of brews on tap and offer quick bites as well. This option is not on the trail; you must travel about 1/4 mile on the road to reach this brewery.

#5 Hoodlebug Trail And Ghost Town Trail with Levity Brewing

The Hoodlebug Trail from Indiana, PA, to Black Lick isn’t the most beautiful or serene trail to ride. It tends to parallel a four-lane road too much of the way. Making it loud. But what this trail does have that makes it worth the ride is Levity Brewing at the Indian end of the trail. Picnic tables, firepits, amazing food, and even better beer make this a good choice for a weekend ride. This trail can be done in conjunction with the Ghost Town Trail, which is a much better ride. The Ghost Town Trail is a total of 48 miles, so doing both the Hoodlebug and Ghost Town trails would be quite a ride. And if you are still hungry, check out El Tesoro Mexican Bar in Indiana; it is some of the best Mexican food I’ve found in Western PA.

#6 Youghiogheny River Trail – Ohiopyle to Confluence with Falls Market and Falls City Pub

The Ohiopyle trail is a beautiful ride. Following the Youghiogheny River for about 10 miles from Ohiopyle State Park to Confluence, this trail is basically a flat ride with great scenery. You can also head in the opposite direction on the GAP trail. You will cross a few stunning high railway bridges where you can watch the rafters below.

To get your bites and brews here, I would suggest two locations. First, grab a bite from the Falls Market Restaurant & General Store; the sandwiches are great, but they don’t serve beer. Then, head to the Falls City Pub, where they have 20 beers on tap (they also have food if you want to make it a one-stop event, but you have to try the pulled pork at Falls Market Restaurant at some point).

Sculpture of red birds and an open hand along Redbank Valley Bike Trail
Trail Sculpture
#7 Redbank Valley Trail

We end the list of the best bike trails in Pittsburgh with food and beer on one of my favorite rides of them all. The Redbank Valley Trail is a 51-mile trail that traverses Armstrong, Clarion, and Jefferson counties. This trail is an offshoot of the Armstrong trail along the Allegheny River from Ford City to just beyond East Brady (this is a great trail to ride; it just doesn’t have any food or beer along it, so it doesn’t make the list). The section of the Redbank Valley trail that is best stretches from the trailhead along the Allegheny River until you reach New Bethlehem. This section is very scenic and follows Redbank Creek. The ride offers a number of tunnels (one unimproved and neither with lights, so bring light or use your phone). Keep an eye out for the great sculptures along the trail, they are very interesting.

In the town of New Bethlehem, there is a cute little restaurant called Zack’s Farm to Table, with a nice outdoor patio. They don’t serve beer, but they do have some good food with all locally sourced ingredients. Burgers, pizza, and homemade ice cream are the highlights. And the prices can’t be beat—$10 for a burger! Parking for the trail is located adjacent to the restaurant.

Give these seven Southwestern Pennsylvania rides a try, and reward yourself with a bite and a good beer afterward. Nothing motivates like a goal! So hit the trails and check out the best Pittsburgh bike trails with food and beer.

For more outdoor things to do in Pittsburgh check out my post A Guide to an Outdoors and Sports Weekend In Pittsburgh.

Below are links and resources to help you plan The perfect trip

Travel Resources

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