Erik Ox

Pittsburgh, PA

71 posts in this topic

Anyone have any recommendations for the city of 3 rivers? I'm headed to a wedding this weekend and have a late Friday dinner (won't be in town until 9-ish), breakfast/lunch on Saturday and brunch on Sunday to fill. On opentable Trilogy looked kinda interesting until I saw the website. This post may later need to be cross listed so it can take the cake as Worst. Website. Ever.

Thanks.

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There are a couple of great places to eat when in the 'Burgh. Kaya in the Strip District. I would go to the Church Brew Works for sandwiches and beer and for high end, The Casbah in Shadyside.

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Erik,

Where will you be staying and what kind of food/price range are you looking for?

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There are a couple of great places to eat when in the 'Burgh. Kaya in the Strip District. I would go to the Church Brew Works for sandwiches and beer and for high end, The Casbah in Shadyside.

Defintely hit Church Brew Works if you get the chance. The beer is good (mostly German and Belgian offerings), the food is very good for pub grub, but, seriously, the real reason to go is to bask in the splendor of that brew kettle on the high altar. It's also across the street from Iron City, so you can get the yin and yang of Pittsburgh beers in one fell swoop.

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Anyone have any recommendations for the city of 3 rivers? I'm headed to a wedding this weekend and have a late Friday dinner (won't be in town until 9-ish), breakfast/lunch on Saturday and brunch on Sunday to fill. On opentable Trilogy looked kinda interesting until I saw the website. This post may later need to be cross listed so it can take the cake as Worst. Website. Ever.

Thanks.

If you possibly can, get to the fruit and vegetable strip sometime after midnight and enter the 4th level of purgatory, which is Primanti Bros. (pronounced Permanti's). It is the most exciting restaurant you'll find anywhere -- mixing students, opera goers, pro athletes, railyard workers, hookers, garbagemen, commodity investors, motorcyclists, litérrateurs, etc. And there's no separate table bullshit, you just sit where you sit, and you can rely on being enthusiastically welcomed. It's the closest thing to the old Les Halles in Paris before they cleaned it up. The place is famous for putting the french fries inside the sandwich, but after the sensory assault of entering Primanti's, that hardly matters. Say hello to Jimmy D for me, and let me know if my review that appeared in Penthouse is still on the wall.

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If you possibly can, get to the fruit and vegetable strip sometime after midnight and enter the 4th level of purgatory, which is Primanti Bros. (pronounced Permanti's). It is the most exciting restaurant you'll find anywhere -- mixing .... hookers, garbagemen, commodity investors, motorcyclists, litérrateurs, etc.
She was a HOOKER? I just thought I was doing really well with her. :)

I'll second Primanti's or The Original for your late Friday night.

Thanks,

Kevin

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She was a HOOKER? I just thought I was doing really well with her. :)

Witticism noted, but for the record Primanti's does not allow prostitutes to enter until their shifts are over.

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STRONG third for Primanti's. http://www.primantibros.com/ You want to order their "#2 best seller the cheesesteak" and you do NOT want to go to a suburban or franchise location (yes, they franchise...hmmm..!)

You want the original.

Wonder what an outpost of Primanti Brothers would do in Old Town, Georgetown, 18th & Columbia, etc.?

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STRONG third for Primanti's. http://www.primantibros.com/ You want to order their "#2 best seller the cheesesteak" and you do NOT want to go to a suburban or franchise location (yes, they franchise...hmmm..!)

You want the original.

When Crown, Cork and Seal used to be one of my customers (it is two blocks from the original location), I would be subjected to Primanti's at least once a month. I just don't get it. I just think that they are too over-done, the size of the sandwiches with the fries and everything else is too large for anyone to actually take a decent bit out of.

I would recommend heading over to Oakland and getting a hotdog and some fries from the "O". It is another Pittsburgh landmark.

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Erik,

Where will you be staying and what kind of food/price range are you looking for?

Staying at the Hilton next to Point State Park and the convention center. Price point is flexible, fine with a higher priced place for Friday pm, just would prefer it to be reasonably close to the Hilton and able to seat us around 10pm. As far as food, I'm probably thinking modern American (does anyone use that anymore?) something like Firefly or Circle Bistro would be ideal, but it may be asking for too much.

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When Crown, Cork and Seal used to be one of my customers (it is two blocks from the original location), I would be subjected to Primanti's at least once a month. I just don't get it. I just think that they are too over-done, the size of the sandwiches with the fries and everything else is too large for anyone to actually take a decent bit out of.

I would recommend heading over to Oakland and getting a hotdog and some fries from the "O". It is another Pittsburgh landmark.

I've never been to Primanti's before midnight. After midnight it is awesome.

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I've never been to Primanti's before midnight. After midnight it is awesome.
Having grown up in the 'burgh, I find that how good Primanti's is tends to be a function of how drunk you are. To some degree it's Pittsburgh's version of Ben's -- it's more unique than good. The Dirty O, on the other hand, has some of the best hotdogs and fries you'll find anywhere -- sober or drunk.

Erik,

I've got an e-mail in to my brother, who still lives in the 'burgh, but finding good eats in Pgh that late may be difficult.

Lidia's (yes, Bastianich) in the Strip district may be worth a shot. An old article I found says open until 10 on Friday and 10:30 on Saturday.

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Lidia's (yes, Bastianich) in the Strip district may be worth a shot. An old article I found says open until 10 on Friday and 10:30 on Saturday.

There seems to be slim pickins in Pittsburgh on Sunday nights. I tried Bona Terra but they're closed. Is there anything? Primanti's will work for lunch, but I'm looking for a more leisurely dinner with a beer or glass of wine. (Joe H is there anything near Kennywood?)

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There seems to be slim pickins in Pittsburgh on Sunday nights. I tried Bona Terra but they're closed. Is there anything? Primanti's will work for lunch, but I'm looking for a more leisurely dinner with a beer or glass of wine. (Joe H is there anything near Kennywood?)

It's been a longgggg time, but from my sketchy memory, I'm throwing these out there in hopes that someone can give more information.

Roland's in the Strip

http://www.rolandsseafoodgrill.com/wst_page10.html

Other areas that come to mind are Carson St./Southside and Shadyside for later dining options.

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There seems to be slim pickins in Pittsburgh on Sunday nights. I tried Bona Terra but they're closed. Is there anything? Primanti's will work for lunch, but I'm looking for a more leisurely dinner with a beer or glass of wine. (Joe H is there anything near Kennywood?)
Try one of these. It's pretty much the behemoth of decent dining in the 'burgh unless you want to try one of the French places on mt washington that are stuck in 1975.

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I would recommend heading over to Oakland and getting a hotdog and some fries from the "O". It is another Pittsburgh landmark.

Man, I used to LOVE this place. Those fries were great for totally unpretentious childhood eating mouth-stuffing. IIRC, they used to have pizza for something like $3 and the dogs were pretty good.

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Try one of these. It's pretty much the behemoth of decent dining in the 'burgh unless you want to try one of the French places on mt washington that are stuck in 1975.

I'm not faring very well at Pimpin' Burrito; I can't get the damned thing to move.

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I'm not faring very well at Pimpin' Burrito; I can't get the damned thing to move.

Obviously you're not twaddling the 'z' and 'x' keys fast enough. Pretend you're like Wanda Landowska coming up to a four-bar trill.

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Man, I used to LOVE this place. Those fries were great for totally unpretentious childhood eating mouth-stuffing. IIRC, they used to have pizza for something like $3 and the dogs were pretty good.

You all are trying to kill the poor guy. LOL The "O", Peerrmantiesnthat.... are only for us yinzers.

Try the Ostrich burger at the Sharps Edge with some good old Belgian Brews.

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monterey bay fish grotto got a very positive "First Bite" by Sietsema a few weeks back for the Tysons location. There's on in Monroeville and on Mt. Washington overlooking the Burgh. I haven't been in 4-5 years but we always enjoyed our meals at the Monroeville location.

Pax,

Brian

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when I lived there, three places that were on the regular rotation:

MadMex (see above)

The Casbah in Shadyside http://www.bigburrito.com/casbah/

and The Church Brew Works- http://www.churchbrew.com/

this place may not be the best food in the world but as the name implies it is a brewpub in an old church. The kegs are right there on the alter. This joint is near the strip district so go and shop for a bit and stop here for lunch!

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Try one of these. It's pretty much the behemoth of decent dining in the 'burgh unless you want to try one of the French places on mt washington that are stuck in 1975.
when I lived there, three places that were on the regular rotation:

MadMex (see above)

[...]

and The Church Brew Works- http://www.churchbrew.com/

this place may not be the best food in the world but as the name implies it is a brewpub in an old church. The kegs are right there on the alter. This joint is near the strip district so go and shop for a bit and stop here for lunch!

I've been meaning to write about my two-night stay in Pittsburgh, where I can honestly say that I didn't have one single good bite of food. The dining scene there seems TERRIBLE.

It all started with an unbelievably bad hot dog at a Pirates game. I'm pretty sure it was a Sugarland dog, and it was just your standard-issue soggy-bun nasty 7-11 tasting thing with pumped mustard and pickle relish that had the consistency of boiled okra. Gross!

I should have waited for the fifth inning, because they started singing this song over the speaker system, which was sung to the tune of "Go Tell Aunt Rosie" (or more accurately, "Let's All Go To The Lobby" - that jingle they play in movie theaters with the cartoon popcorn box and soft drink, erm, pop). Here's how it went:

It's time to shoot some hot dogs!

It's time to shoot some hot dogs!

It's time to shoot some hot dogs!

And catch ourselves some meat!

And then they proceeded to come out with bazookas along the first- and third-base lines - you know how they shoot T-shirts up into the crowd? - well, they did it with HOT DOGS. One of them bounced off the concrete of the upper deck, and fell down to the mezzanine and people were diving for it like it was a 500th home-run ball.

For dinner that night I went to Church Brew Works, and had some really good beers (and awesome cream soda), but the food I saw coming out looked pretty bleak despite a semi-ambitious menu. I stuck with a bacon cheeseburger and homemade, slightly burnt, potato chips and I don't regret it. In terms of cubic footage (width x depth x height), this must surely be one of the largest restaurants in the world.

Lunch the next day was at Kennywood - do the math!

Then dinner at the original MadMex, the one near the university. A very cool dive with a good beer selection (I actually had a Church Brew Works beer there) and genuinely friendly service, but alas, the food was no better than what you'd get by buying El Paso at Safeway. I think I had a chicken quesadilla and a beef burrito.

So while the food itself was forgettable, I'm glad I went to both Church Brew Works and MadMex. Great, unique atmospheres that can't be replicated (although they're trying with multiple locations of MadMex). Thanks for the recommendations.

Cheers,

Rocks.

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I wish I had seen this earlier - the food scene is not as dire as in some of the posts. Having lived there for several years and now travelling back there for business, there are some great places, but not necessarily in the most well-known places. In Bloomfield there is a place called Tessaro's - basically a grill, but with a great neighborhood feel and one of the best chicken sandwiches anywhere. I used to live on them in grad school and still love to go back there. In Brightwood I think, is a small Italian place called Davio's. Tiny space, great Italian, which really is one of the best cuisines in the Burgh. I still dream of a perfectly cooked portabello dish from back before everyone decided the portabello was a meat substitute for vegitarian dishes. Perfectly grilled with salt, olive oil, and garlic.

In the Strip district - Deluca's is a great diner serving fantastic breakfasts, especially omelets. And I still make my way to Pamela's in Shadyside for breakfast - they have very thin, almost crepe-like pancakes and home fries done right. To be honest, I have not found breakfast places or Italian up to those meals yet locally.

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And I still make my way to Pamela's in Shadyside for breakfast - they have very thin, almost crepe-like pancakes and home fries done right.

Pamela's is my all time favorite pancakes! Thanks for reminding me about it!

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Finally made it out to Il Pizzaiolo. Amazing pizza!! A friend and I shared the Margherita DOC, Sausage and Rapini, and a Provola, (I think that was the name, with fresh tomato, arugula, smokey cheese, (scamorza?) and shaved grana). It's really the closest I've had to the pizza I ate in Naples, Gino Sorbillo in particular.

The restaurant and oven are both very aesthetically pleasing, and the wait staff isn't half bad either!

Highly recommended, worth the trip.

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We stayed at the Omni William Penn. I have to admit that their chicken wings looked fantastic, but the "Tap Room" was so overcrowded (mostly by Giants fans) that it took us forever to get even a round of beers, we never got our waters, and one of the beers was wrong. We paid the $5 and change for each of our beers and other than at Heinz Field that was the most we paid for one all weekend.

However, the breakfast they brought to our room on Monday morning was rather good.

We hit Carson City Saloon on Southside on Saturday night was pretty good - though, mind you, we'd started drinking hours before in another state. I had the grilled balogna with a fried egg, while most of the other guys had the Pitts-burger or something like that. Beers were only $2, and dropped to $.26 when #26 on the Penguins scored a goal.

We made it to Primanti bros. later that night but alas, didn't eat.

However, overall we were impressed with how cheap most everything was and how friendly everyone was.

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Wow. I'm going to Pittsburgh this weekend with my husband and toddler. The above thread makes the dining scene seem pretty dire. :rolleyes: If anyone knows of any decent places where a 19-month old won't be a problem (and is in or within striking distance of the Strip District), I would be grateful!

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If anyone knows of any decent places where a 19-month old won't be a problem (and is in or within striking distance of the Strip District), I would be grateful!
Ok, I've not been there, but was up watching "Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives" once, which featured:

Kelly O's

Pine Plaza Shopping Center

1130 Perry Hwy

Pittsburgh, PA 15237

Tel: (412) 364-0473

It looked nice, family-friendly, and roughly 7-8 miles acc. to Google maps. Have fun!

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I think I said it up thread, but it bears repeating; Il Pizzaiolo. It's in Mt. Lebanon about 10 minutes out of downtown Pittsburgh. Some of the best pizza and wine bar stuff you will ever eat, 'nuff said.

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Just got back from the Iron City and found the eating to be much more pleasant than I expected. Dinners were provided at the home of local friends, so our meals out were breakfast and lunch. The Strip was a short walk from our hotel, so we headed there early Saturday morning. The Strip is usually busy on weekend mornings due to the traffic at the amazing selection of ethnic grocers along Penn Ave, but this was also St. Patrick's Day weekend, so revelers in green Steelers paraphernalia were out in full force. We got to Deluca's at 9:00 and were seated within 5 minutes. After that the wait would have been over an hour.

Deluca's is a typical greasy spoon diner with an exhaustive breakfast menu. I got corned beef hash which was nicely done. I especially liked the home fries which came with it as they had a fresh potato flavor, not frozen. Mr. Bimbap got the mixed grill with Italian sausage which he enjoyed. The waffle for the Bimbapino was rather flabby.

During my son's afternoon nap, I walked back into the Strip to pick up pastrami sandwiches at Primanti Brothers. In theory, this sandwich shouldn't work as the french fries and coleslaw included seem gimmicky, but in practice it was delicious. I think the factor is the coleslaw since it's dressed with vinegar rather than mayo.

Sunday morning breakfast was at Pamela's Diner, around the corner from Deluca's. This is more upscale than Deluca's, and the food reflected that. They are known for their "hotcakes" which are actually crepes. I had a short stack of them which consisted of two dinner plated-sized hotcakes. They were very light with nice crispy edges. My husband had his with strawberries and whipped cream and greatly enjoyed them.

Our final stop was at the La Prima Espresso Bar. My husband is a harsh judge of coffee, but this place did not disappoint him. He enjoyed his macchiato quite a bit. Do I seem like a rube because I was impressed that the place was being patronized by actual Italians? There was very little English spoken there.

I want to give a final shout-out to the very nice people of Pittsburgh. At every place we ate, there was someone at the next table who was so nice (especially since we had our rambunctious toddler) and one couple even gave us their name and number in case we needed some help around the city. Thank you, Pittsburgh!

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As someone who went to school at Pitt and went to some great lengths to find good places for the friends/family that would come visit, here are my recommendations in/around the city:

Grand Concourse - Higher end seafood in an old train station with a great view of the river. Right at the end of Station Square.

Tessaros - One of the other posters mentioned this for their chicken sandwich, however, I think their burgers border on what we have here in Arlington at Ray's (without the fancy accoutrements). They have a butcher on the premises who grinds their meat daily. As its in Bloomfield and is definitely a neighborhood favorite, be prepared to wait for a seat.

Church Brew Works - As mentioned by many others, great beers. In terms of food stick with the pierogies and pizza which I always found excellent.

Fat Heads - Great sandwiches and thick cut chips on the South Side.

Tambellini's - Right across the bridge from PNC park. Tiny Italian place serving great italian american fare.

I won't go into the "O" or Primantis since many posters have already touched on them. Same with Pamelas.

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As someone who went to school at Pitt and went to some great lengths to find good places for the friends/family that would come visit, here are my recommendations in/around the city:

Grand Concourse - Higher end seafood in an old train station with a great view of the river. Right at the end of Station Square.

Tessaros - One of the other posters mentioned this for their chicken sandwich, however, I think their burgers border on what we have here in Arlington at Ray's (without the fancy accoutrements). They have a butcher on the premises who grinds their meat daily. As its in Bloomfield and is definitely a neighborhood favorite, be prepared to wait for a seat.

Church Brew Works - As mentioned by many others, great beers. In terms of food stick with the pierogies and pizza which I always found excellent.

Fat Heads - Great sandwiches and thick cut chips on the South Side.

Tambellini's - Right across the bridge from PNC park. Tiny Italian place serving great italian american fare.

I won't go into the "O" or Primantis since many posters have already touched on them. Same with Pamelas.

Pizza Milano's in Oakland... and Bravo on Mcknight RD..then off to banana Joe's for a drink....if they are still open..I am a Pitt Alum also..Great city, Great Sports, Horrible Beer (Iron City)

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Good beer--Penn Brewery, if they are still open...

Still open. Great place to sit outside and have some good beer and acceptable pub grub.

(Located on the North Side close to downtown)

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Isn't it amazing how many of us have ties to Pburgh? My parents both grew up there, I spent my summers in Swissvale where my grandfather had a drug store. Never lived there till grad school at CMU....As far as Primantis goes - don't think I was ever there before 2:30 AM.....

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Bangkok balcony, on Forbes, is some of the best Thai I've ever had. Been there 5+ times, and everything is always delicious. Nothing groundbreaking culinarily, but a very cool dining room and nice ambiance.

Hyeholde (http://www.hyeholde.com/) is the only restaurant in the city that's doing anything remotely interesting in terms of fine dining. In a building built in 1931, this is the best upscale restaurant in the city, and the only one that I would ever consider going to. A chef that genuinely loves what he does, very solid service, food grown on-site, and a boatload of passion make this a place worthy of spending the money to eat there- the only, singular, upscale place in Pittsburgh about which I will say that. It's not Komi, it's not Citronelle, but it's the closest that Pittsburgh has, and it's well-respected among the chefs at Culinary school there, which says something.

Le Pommier, on Carson St, on the South Side, is a very solid French Bistro. Solid cooking techniques, great service, and a nice wine list.

I hated Primanti Brother's when I tried it. It's definitely drunk-food. Also, everything shuts down ridiculously early in the city and surrounding area, so if you're hungry around 2am, there's veeeery little to get. Fast until the morning.

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In September, I dined at Eleven at 1150 Smallman Street, and was really impressed by the quality of the ingredients and the cooking. The restaurant is the 11th restaurant opened in Pgh. by a group called "Big Burrito," which made me very skeptical when I checked it out beforehand on their website. But, the atmosphere was very tasteful -- modern, clean lines, but warmed by the use of wood, and by comfy chairs and a big fireplace near the hostess stand. Somewhat incongruously, there were also lots of big screen tvs in the bar areas, but the dining and bars areas were separated by enough space so that the dining experience was very comfortable. The menu emphasizes fresh and mostly local ingredients, with some slight suggestions of an asian influence. The server was extremely accommodating and careful to explain the ingredients in several dishes for one guest who could not eat any gluten products. The cooking and presentation was very high quality. I can't recall at this point what we ate, but all of it was delicious and well executed. It was nothing at all like any other restaurant experience I have had in Pittsburgh. The funniest thing was that I was in town for a trial, and every single out-of-town attorney involved in the case was there for dinner on the same night, so it must be the go-to place downtown for attorneys who like to eat well.

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Eleven's a good place as well, though the food is wildly inconsistent because of insane staff turnover. While I was in school, just about everyone in my class worked in the kitchen there at some point in time. Derek Stevens has skills, though, no doubt.

Also, after my last trip there this week, I really have to stress one restaurant in particular to try- China Star on McKnight road, in McIntyre square. It's the best authentic Szechuan food I've ever had. I'm nomming on (leftover) beautifully prepared beef tongue and tripe right now, ordered alongside smoked pork belly and garlic greens, a steaming cauldron of clear soup with tofu and greens, and tan tan noodes. Highly, highly, highly recommended. I've been there at least 8 times and never had a dish that fell short of amazing. Great service, too- the owner still recognizes me though our last visit was in July.

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Heading to Pittsburgh this weekend and looking to get a gift certificate at one of the nicer restaurants for an old coach and his wife. Any recommendations? My culinary scope when it comes to Pittsburgh (developed in college at Pitt) tends to lean towards Church Brew Works, Tessaros, and Primanti's with the only "fine" dining establishments I've spent much time in being the Georgetown Inn (more for the view than the food) and the Grand Concourse (haven't been in quite awhile).

Any input would be much appreciated.

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Nice weekend in Pittsburgh. Dined at the Church Brew Works Friday night and while the food was fine and the beer really good, the smell inside was a bit much.

I'm told it is the beer making smell and I get that. But it hits you pretty hard as you enter and smells like a pet store, Made it tough to enjoy the meal completely, despite the food being good.

I went once 12 years ago, soon after they opened. Another time about 5 years ago. Enjoyed both, that's why I went back. But i don't recall any odor. I asked the waitress and she said "yeah, I know. When I'm away for a few days and return, it hits me too."

Maybe it was the time of year; they've been cooped up all winter and it'll air out over the summer. Maybe it is part of the charm. We took a few pieces of my son's leftover pizza back to the hotel room and I nibbled at midnight - and could taste it in the crust.

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Really last minute, but I'm at a conference being held at hte HIlton in Pgh and would like to do a nice lunch nearby one day. My mom recommended Six Penn, and there's also Palomino nearby. Nothing else seems to be within walking distance and my schedule doesn't allow me to get further away. Are either worth it, even at lunch prices? Or is there something else you can suggest?

If I *coiuld* get away, any recommendations. Le Pommier interested me, and I think there's a nother place down there that gets good recs - Dish I think. Also trying to convince my mom to let me take her to Bistro 19 for an early mother's day, but not sure if we'll make it.

thanks!

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I think I said it up thread, but it bears repeating; Il Pizzaiolo. It's in Mt. Lebanon about 10 minutes out of downtown Pittsburgh. Some of the best pizza and wine bar stuff you will ever eat, 'nuff said.

This will not help Choirgirl21 in the least...

I went to Il Pizzaiolo last summer, and found the pizza to be well above par for Neapolitan pizza, but on the same trip I had the pleasure of dining at Spacca Napoli in Chicago and found that the two pies we had there were better still.

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Really last minute, but I'm at a conference being held at hte HIlton in Pgh and would like to do a nice lunch nearby one day. My mom recommended Six Penn, and there's also Palomino nearby. Nothing else seems to be within walking distance and my schedule doesn't allow me to get further away. Are either worth it, even at lunch prices? Or is there something else you can suggest?

If I *coiuld* get away, any recommendations. Le Pommier interested me, and I think there's a nother place down there that gets good recs - Dish I think. Also trying to convince my mom to let me take her to Bistro 19 for an early mother's day, but not sure if we'll make it.

thanks!

Le Pommier is like a 10 minute bus ride from downtown, as is a nice Spanish place called Mallorca (both on Carson St.). I've heard okay things about Six Penn, but never been.

Here is a link to the trip planner.

There's a nice Indian place on 5'th, between Liberty and Penn, as well. It's not upscale, but the lunch buffet is very good. Went there a lot while in school. India Palace, I believe, is the name. Montecello's also has pretty good pizza, and is close. Stay far away from Sree's.

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Le Pommier is like a 10 minute bus ride from downtown, as is a nice Spanish place called Mallorca (both on Carson St.). I've heard okay things about Six Penn, but never been.

Here is a link to the trip planner.

There's a nice Indian place on 5'th, between Liberty and Penn, as well. It's not upscale, but the lunch buffet is very good. Went there a lot while in school. India Palace, I believe, is the name. Montecello's also has pretty good pizza, and is close. Stay far away from Sree's.

Thanks for the input. We seem to be getting less time than expected for all of our breaks, which is putting a damper on my eating plans, but if we have enough time for lunch tomorrow, I may try one of the places you mentioned. No South Side tonight after all though for the same reason. :lol:

I did end up at Six Penn for lunch. I made the mistake of ordering an app and a sandwich - the portions were ridiculous - but the truffled tator tots with garlic aioli were simple, but plain old yummy. Though the sides on my main lacked anything exceptional, the pulled pork sandwich with cilantro was good (although no sign of the tempura plantains that were listed on teh menu). Given the size of the orders, I wish I had gone iwth my original plan to get 2 apps, but it was a good (huge) lunch for just under $20. I wouldn't scream their name from the rooftops, but I would definitely go back. :D

Cultural pub crawl looms, better get moving.

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I wanted to add that I ended up going to Eleven one evening. I opted for 2 apps for my meal, each paired with a glass of wine and had an outstanding experience. My first dish was the tuna tartare, which I would have never ordered save the recommendation from the bartender. It was a unique version, really tasty, and quite generous portion-wise. It paired really nicely with the featured gruner veltliner. My second dish had to be the pierogies w/a caramelized onion veal sauce off of the bar menu as I am a Pgh girl. I have to admit, as a polish girl who grew up eating pierogies, I'm often disappointed in "upscale" versions so I was a tad skeptical, but these were rich and delicious and paired really well with the syrah my server suggested. The other treat was the flavorful pile of chard they were placed on. The bartender was excellent and her pairings were spot on (n both cases she suggested the wine I was hoping to get, I think we must have had very similar palates). I was just really pleased with my experience in its entirety - I would have been happy to have had that meal in Baltimore or DC and the portions were quite a bit more generous than you'd encounter here.

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Cultural pub crawl looms, better get moving.

As a native Yinzer, this comment made me go --> :lol:

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As a native Yinzer, this comment made me go --> :lol:

:lol Well it never really came to fruition. That's the night I went to Eleven. I needed some down time so decided to go eat solo at Eleven then join the pub crawl late, except most people weren't participating so I hooked up with some people in the first bar I went into and we went back to the hospitality suite to have some free Church Brew Works beer instead. Apparently it was the right call. :D

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Well I'm back in the 'burgh again. This time for some family stuff so not as much fun this time around, but I do have one question - anyone know of any good wine bars in the area, or restaurants that have an excellent wine program/sommelier? If I have time, I thought I might drop in somewhere to do some blind tasting practice. I'm in Greentree, on Noblestown Road so right off the Parkway and also can head into town via the West End Circle/Carson St so I would think downtown, South Side, and Mt. Washington would be the most accessible for me outside of the immediate area.

Thanks!

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I think I said it up thread, but it bears repeating; Il Pizzaiolo. It's in Mt. Lebanon about 10 minutes out of downtown Pittsburgh. Some of the best pizza and wine bar stuff you will ever eat, 'nuff said.

Took me forever to make a side-trip to Il Pizzaiolo. Really nice little place, with a Mediterranean bistro vibe. The DOC Margherita pizza surprised me in two ways: it was presented already cut into slices (no big deal), and at first I thought it looked a smidge overtopped with tomato sauce. But one bite in and I was hooked...particularly by the flavor of the sauce. I don't care if the tomatos arrive in cans or what, but the sauce was terrifically full of tomato flavor. Baked to a nice medium-brown with appropriate blistering, and a nice soft chew everywhere else.

Great arancini too. Very small, and served in a bowl with a little tomato sauce on the bottom.

When pizza man says to go check out a pizza joint, you say 'yes', dammit.

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Congratulations both to the city of Pittsburgh, and also to our own MeMc who has become the new restaurant critic for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

Find the kitchen bar at Salt Of The Earth if you haven't found it already. A wonderful all-around dining experience, with interesting dishes, rock-solid cooking (right before your very eyes), and, what I remember most of all, exceptional hospitality. Look at this level of attention to customer satisfaction - old-world manners in a very new-world restaurant.

---

From: Don Rockwell <donrockwell@dcdining.com>

Subject: Re: "Come As You Are" Dress Code /

Date: July 3, 2012 1:37:15 AM EDT

To: Salt Of The Earth <hello@saltpgh.com>

Hi! I'm very interested in trying Salt of the Earth tomorrow night, but there are a couple reasons why it might not work:

1) Your website says "Come As You Are," but I'll be coming with my 15-year-old son from Cedar Point amusement park (and a 4-5 hour drive), and we'll look like a couple of decrepit rats. We won't have tank-tops or anything, but we'd definitely be in t-shirts, shorts, and athletic shoes. Obviously, you could stick us in a back corner of the downstairs bar area. Is this okay?

2) Also, your website says your kitchen is open until 11 PM. On a Monday night in summer during a heat wave, a lot of places will close early. Would it be safe to show up as late as 9 PM? We aren't looking for your restaurant's best effort; it would be more like "sustenance" at that point, but I would love to see your place because I've never been before, and since we'd be passing through, this is my one only chance.

And with this said ... there's probably only a 50-50 shot of us coming anyway because we'll be exhausted. Ah, the joys of working in the restaurant industry. :-)

I hope this letter finds you well (and obviously, if you reply, a simple "yes / no" or "yes / yes" (or whatever the answers are) is all that's necessary.

Kind regards,

Don Rockwell

---

From: Salt Of The Earth <hello@saltpgh.com>

Subject: Re: "Come As You Are" Dress Code /

Date: July 2, 2012 3:27:37 PM EDT

To: Don Rockwell <donrockwell@dcdining.com>

Hello Don,

You're definitely welcome to dine with us after a Cedar Point car trip. We really mean it when we say feel free to come as you are to our restaurant.

Additionally, our kitchen is open until midnight Monday through Saturday. We take reservations until 10:45pm, and welcome people to join us in our walk-in seating as long a we're serving food. I would say 9pm is a fine time to come in.

Take care and have a fun trip with your son.

Best regards,

Amanda

Salt of the Earth

5523 Penn Ave

Pittsburgh, PA 15206

www.saltpgh.com

(412) 441-7258

---

From: Don Rockwell <donrockwell@dcdining.com>

Subject: Re: "Come As You Are" Dress Code /

Date: July 3, 2012 1:37:15 AM EDT

To: Salt Of The Earth <hello@saltpgh.com>

Dear Amanda,

What a lovely response to my email.

We did, in fact make it in, and had a wonderful meal - we could not have been happier, and I don't know of a better meal that I've had in Pittsburgh.

Thank you SO MUCH for having taken the time to write, and please look for a little review on www.donrockwell.com - I love your restaurant, and have nothing but good things to say. May I have your permission to cut/paste your most thoughtful response to my email?

Kind regards,

Don Rockwell

---

From: Salt Of The Earth <hello@saltpgh.com>

Subject: Re: "Come As You Are" Dress Code /

Date: July 3, 2012 6:43:11 PM EDT

To: Don Rockwell <donrockwell@dcdining.com>

Hello Don,

We're glad you enjoyed your experience at our restaurant. I hope you and your son enjoyed the kitchen bar.

You are more than welcome to copy and paste our correspondence on your website.

Have a great holiday,

Amanda

Salt of the Earth

5523 Penn Ave

Pittsburgh, PA 15206

www.saltpgh.com

(412) 441-7258

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Spent a few days in Pittsburgh:

Church Brew Works - no smell! Last time I was there it was intense and as we approached this time my daughter whined...once inside, very nice. Maybe last time was during a certain stage of brewing, or the wind wasn't right, or something - glad I went again. The pierogie pizza is awesome - basically, pureed potato replaces the red sauce and cheddar replaces the mozzarella - delicious, with a nice chewy crust. The standard and special pierogies were also delicious. This is decent pub food with fresh beer at a reasonable price, plus a neat, cavernous place. I wonder how they heat/paint/repair the place without going bankrupt...yet they seem to do fine as this was my 3rd or 4th trip over about 12 years.

Salt of the Earth - we went early on a Monday night and we had the place virtully to ourselves, so we (with the kids) sat at the counter and chatted with the kitchen staff. The food was really interesting and well executed. The hanger steak is cooked sous vide and comes out more like filet mignon. The scallops were also very nice on a cool evening, with lots of kale and squash. For us, a special part was the kid's noodles with butter - what I assume were house made noodles that were really delicious and stood up well in such a simple preparation. The crab appetizer included fresh, chilled stringy crabmeat with some roe and crispy chicken skin (very crispy, like a pringles chip) and we also really enjoyed the turnip appetizer, almost a slaw, with its interesting flavors. The upstairs seating area is dramatic and would make a nice romantic dinner. Downstairs the communal seating is a bit more relaxed. The_Smiths on the sound system fits right in.

Primanti Brothers - seems you either love this place or throw up in it, or maybe both. For my first time, it was fine - an interesting sandwich at what seemed a fair price and with fresh ingredients. For $6.29, I thought it was a decent value and of a quality that exceeded my expectations a bit. But at $6.29 I did't have lofty expectations. So - it was fine and if I am near there again I might go again. Or, I might not. Just depends.

Lidia's - also in the Strip District, we stopped here for their Sunday family-style special. First, the place is on the large, even huge side and obviously a ton of money was spent on decor and infrastructure. Valet parking and a mini bookstore featuring Lidia's latests greet you as you enter. We (two adults, 12 yr old, 9 yr old) got the family style approach and it was just an avalanche of food. I guess Italian dining is supposed to be that way but we ended up with takeout that weighed...I dunno....about 4 pounds. I feel like we did something wrong. The prices were fair- $25 per adult, $9 or 10 per kid - it just seemed like SO much food. The mussels were excellent, though with 2 large bowls full it felt more like all-you-eat; I might have eaten 50 mussels. The chicken picatta was tangy and tender. The 3 other pasta dishes were decent, though I think the ravioli had been sitting awhile. My advice - order a la carte, share some dishes and order as you need. Otherwise, this is a place you can dress up a bit, take some friends and sit for some time. The service was excellent, the food pretty good (and plentiful) and the ambiance is really nice.

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Well, it seems I have little to add, since the consensus around Salt of the Earth -- apparently named after a Rolling Stones song :P  -- existed long before I stumbled in the other night, having been drawn by proximity and availability (Cure was booked) as much as the sterling and trusted recco's here.

 

But having nothing to add never stopped me.

 

I wandered into Salt late-ish with the boy and decided against the kitchen bar because why is watching a saute station fascinating?  And that shit is loud.  We switched over to the communal table with the other socialists, and I decided that  the woman who'd guided us looked decidedly familiar.  Unlike Don's kid,* mine favors designer neckties and designer cocktails and so I left him waiting for his unfortunate Scotch concoction and looking for a local girl who appreciated his gangster style and made my way back to the front to confirm that the manager was indeed better half to former DR Superstar John Wabeck, the esteemed Melissa Horst.  Melissa pretended to be glad to see me, which was heartening, and texted Wabeck who immediately texted her back not to tell me where he worked.

 

The food was quite tasty.  Tastier, in fact than some of the newer and better-reviewed spots here in DC, in a sort of pan-global, neo-American kind of way.**  Chestnut and celery soup tasted more, it seemed, of celery, but I liked it -- bright on the palate and stuff.  It's hard to fuck up beef cheeks with cavetelli, but Salt went one better than not fucking up, the rapini and pepper lifting it (them?) from comfortable to intriguing. The winner of the night was pork belly -- again, an easy winner, and again elevated by a deft touch, in this case, steaming the belly to the melting point and then sauteeing the outside until crisp.  You practically expected it to run liquid onto the plate like a ripe Epoisses after you cut through the crust.  The boy stopped checking out the girls until he was through.

 

The millionaires shortbread -- gilded with a little gold leaf left behind when the Mellon family fortune fled East Liberty for the suburbs -- tasted like a million bucks, stupid good with peanuts and chocolate and caramel atop the shortbread.

 

if there was a downside, it was a rather lame wine list, chalked on the wall and featuring pedestrian selections like Lohr Cabernet and Trapiche Malbec and such-like. 

 

So, put me on the SOTE bandwagon -- I left wishing that they'd move the whole operation a little closer to my house, where I'd be among the many to make it a regular stop.

 

And let's drive the bandwagon past the projects that also sprang up when the Mellon Family Fortune fled, in the general direction of the less menacing Whole Foods that sprang up more recently, and park in front of Spoon, where John Wabeck seems to have assembled a fine wine list despite the absurdity of Pennsylvania's liquor laws. Their kitchen was closed and we were too happy with what we'd already eaten to eat more but John  -- who, I was happy to see, seems immensely happy with life -- generously poured out a few glasses of Italian and Portuguese plonk.  No tasting notes, alas, but the selection was creative and tasty and I suggest that the Pittsburgh-bound consider exploring the list, and the food, at greater length. 

 

Primanti Brothers has a certain low rent charm, a great place for a breakfast beer before the Steeler's Game or a drunk munch anytime after.  It's hard not to like it but I'd have to be too drunk to drive to drive out of my way for it.  

 

And the Strip itself was surprisingly un-horrible -- you know how these redeveloping yuppie magnets can feel more like a "concept" than real life.  The Strip gets a little bit of everything in terms of customers and sellers (it seems) so you can buy organic, raw milk cheese and grass-fed onglet at the barely-relocated Pittsburgh Public Market and then bulk frozen wings and fries at the butcher shop a half block down (and then -- a breakfast beer, of course, and some hippie tiny donuts).  I wish I'd had more time.  I'll let you know about the cheese and onglet.

 

*Don, you do know you can just change in the amusement park parking lot, right? ;)   Hell, I once changed in a rest-stop restroom on the New Jersey en route to lunch at Jean-Georges.  Aside from the sound of a key in your mistress's front door, nothing much makes you dress faster than realizing you're in a Turnpike men's room stall wearing only socks and a pair of plaid boxers. (yeah, get THAT image out of your head, bitches!)  (Sorry, Breaking Bad marathon).

 

**Once we get past the inevitable "fresh, seasonal and local" drivel, what do we call the sort of cooking that these days pretty much defines any not-obviously-ethnic mid-to-up-scale place that does all those things that everybody does now: slices heirloom tomatoes in the summer, braises pork belly in winter, revels in root vegetables and pasta stuffed with corn and other oddities, serves kale 24/7/52, and appropriates techniques from whatever culinary culture seems appropriate at the moment?  If I was 65 (instead of a stripling of 54), I'd call it "Continental (except when they play with curry or raw fish) and if it was the 80s I'd say "New American." There was a lot of "Mediterranean" talk there for a while, because of pasta and arugula and cured pork, but then people rediscovered butter and the French and ladled those on top so, while it's often very good stuff, I'd say today's benchmark style lacks a shorthand name to slap on it. If anyone calls it "mindful," I will punch them.

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With her permission, the list former DR contributor and current P-G restaucritic Melissa McCart was kind enough to send me (thanks, Zora, for hooking us up):

 

For me the list goes: cure, legume or butterjoint, salt. Here is the more extensive version.

 

South Side

Dish Osteria or Stagioni on the South Side (prefer the scene at Dish)

Acacia for cocktails

 

PGH Pierogi Cart (follow hours on Twitter)

 

Oakland

Legume or Butterjoint (the bar is less expensive, serves til midnight.Don't

miss this place)

 

Lawrenceville

Cure for dinner

Allegheny Wine Mixer for drinks

 

Garfield

Salt of the Earth (also open late night, from 11-2. much less expensive, fun

scene)

 

Strip

Casa Reyna for surprisingly interesting Mexican food, homemade tortillas,

etc.

Penn Ave Fish Co. for lunch

Bar Marco drinks, brunch, dinner is hit and miss

Eleven for happy hour, brunch

Thin Man Sandwich Shop

 

East Liberty

Spoon (this is where Wabeck went, Missy) for dinner although it's a bit

conservative for me.

Notion -fancy dinner)

Dinette- pizza, lovely seasonal

 

Downtown

Butcher and the rye. Go for a drink.

 

Elsewhere

 

Root 174

E2 (BYO. Super charming, good not great food)

Park Brugges

I Tea Cafe for shabu shabu

Max's Allegheny Tavern (old school. Food is terrible. Good place for beer)

East End Brewing

Everyday Noodles soup dumplings.

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At Tender in Pittsburgh, I had the best burger I've had in longer than I can remember. For $7 on Mondays, you have your choice of several burgers. I got the blue burger - 1/3rd pound burger, cooked perfectly medium rare, with blue cheese, fried egg, onion jam, and balsamic aoli.

 

Also, great cocktails (bias: I have friends who work there and hooked me up while there) and a great atmosphere.

 

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Salt of the Earth and Legume were the best restaurants I've been to in Pittsburgh. Had dinner twice at Salt, I can't really recall any specific dishes, but everything I tried there was delicious. I agree with Waitman it was on par with several popular DC restaurants, although I remember both times feeling portion sizes for the main courses were a bit small for their price. Sitting at the kitchen bar is definitely a worthwhile experience.

 

I only had lunch at Legume once, but it was a great lunch. The Summer Vegetarian Explosion is a steal at $12, with a salad, slice of quiche, soup, and a piece of grilled bread. The salad had a bit too much vinegar, the quiche was solid, but the bread paired with the soup was spectacular. I had a corn soup, and it was rich, complex, and extremely satisfying on a slightly chilly day. The bread was fresh off the grill, fluffy, and complemented the soup perfectly, both in terms of flavor and being able to use it to mop up every last drop. I finished off with a pair of fresh chocolate chip cookies for $3. 

 

post-10518-0-62145400-1416695745_thumb.j

 

Point Brugge Cafe, Smiling Banana Leaf, and Noodlehead were all reliable places to grab a meal. Noodlehead in particular does a variety of Thai noodle dishes at $6-9 apiece, which are packed with flavor and heat if you ask for it, although my last visit there was a bit disappointing. The Porch was pretty tasty the one time I went, although it seemed to close down every so often with hygiene issues. If you're ever in the mood for Chinese near Pitt/CMU (not recommended), the best of the bunch was Little Asia.

 

There's a place called Teppanyaki Kyoto in Highland Park that makes traditional Japanese dishes in front of you at the kitchen bar, including their specialty Okonomiyaki, made with your choice of filling and optional soba noodles. This was the only Okonomiyaki I've had and I didn't particularly care for the combination of cabbage and mayonnaise, but the restaurant as whole seemed authentic and I enjoyed their other dishes.

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Everyday Noodles on Forbes is a pretty decent rendition of hand-pulled noodles. We got there pretty late so they weren't pulling them fresh anymore, but they were still nicely chewy. The beef tendon soup wasn't spicy at all, but that was easily fixed with a copious spoonful of spicy paste. The beef tendon and beef cubes were perfectly cooked; I usually go for beef tendon to counter overcooked beef, but the beef here was so tender it was almost unnecessary. The soup dumplings and potstickers were forgettable, the soup dumplings so dried out they barely had any soup.

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Just got back from my first trip to PGH. We were there only for 2 nights and were with a huge group for a surprise 70th b-day party, so we didn't get to hit the really good spots. I'll give a thumbs up to Max's Allegheny Tavern, though. I'd called on a Thursday at around 4p for a party of 9 at 7p. The kind gentleman said no problem. I called about 30 minutes later to change the time to 7:30p because of a delayed flight and the kind lady said no problem. Eleven of us arrived at 7:30 and I realized I forgot to call to add the extra people I didn't know would be with us. The kind hostess said they'd need to adjust the tables but it's no problem.

The restaurant is a warren of rooms, so we felt like we were relatively secluded, which was great. I'm not sure if the other 5-6 tables in our area appreciated our group, but we all had a great time. I agree with a note above that the food is not good, but the beers were. The German selections on tap were a wheat, a dunkel, a golden ale and one other, I think. Served in mason glasses, they were wet and tasty. The potato pancakes are nothing like I've ever seen in a German restaurant. They were like savory flour pancakes with some grated potato in them. Truly awful. I don't think anyone raved about their meal, the the server was awesome, the beers flowed quickly, the food service was fast and they didn't pitch a fit when two more people came and one had a meal after we'd all finished.

If I lived nearby I'd be happy to keep trying the menu to find the things I liked because it was such a friendly place to be. I know people who live nearby go often for just that reason.

Before we went to Max's we gathered at the James Steet Speakeasy and Gastopub. It didn't appear to be either of those things, but they did have a great draft list of about 8-9 beers you don't see often. Unfortunately, the draft board didn't list prices, so I was surprised by the $9.50 I paid for a Stone Enjoy By 7-4-15. Oh, well, high alcohol and not common, so I wrote that off. The other beers seemed to be in the $6-7 range.

We had a good breakfast sandwich at Lindo's, which had a cool dive feel, along with somewhat surly but kind older waitresses. Had a cheese steak at Peppi's on the same street. Meh. The bread was too chewy for what I was expecting, but I didn't get their specialty, The Roethlisburger, which I'm kicking myself for. Cool place, though. Old school.

We stayed in the North Shore area, and walked everywhere, so none of these places is in downtown, FYI. Cool city, though.

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Max's is a real PGH institution. Haven't thought about that place in a long time. :)

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We were able to fit in a dinner in Pittsburgh and ended up at Butcher and the Rye, somewhat dangerously close to an active Pirates game.  The drinks here are good and they recently re-imported (since he claimed to be originally from the Pittsburgh area) a bar manager with an impressive handlebar mustache.  

 

The food is also really really good.  Toe to toe with best of Philly or DC good.  

 

Taking this sampling as reflective of the top portion of the Pittsburgh restaurant scene, we're making our plans for a return.

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is there any hope for people driving around Pittsburgh on the PA Turnpike? I've had to make that trip a few times this year and have mostly been motoring past. Quick eats are preferred, but if there's a destination for a sit down meal I may be able to swing it.

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I'm not sure if it's completely worth the detour, but we went to Wild Sage while in town a few weeks ago and they put together some pretty good dishes and a couple good cocktails or two. I'd recommend it for people in that area as there aren't many great options that aren't pizza. Probably 5-10 minutes down Rt 8 off Exit 39.

 

Oh and of course there's always Eat'N Park  :)

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Popped into Meat and Potatoes downtown last night for an impromptu dinner.  Even at 7:30 on a January Sunday night, there wasn't an empty table until we were finishing with our meal.

 

Coming off a nice win at the Rivers Casino next to Heinz Field (a surprisingly nice casino that I'd never heard about, if you're into that sort of thing), I was in an indulgence mood.  Started with the roasted bone marrow ($18) which came with three large bones, bread and various accoutrements.  Wife got the fried brussels ($6) to start.  My 'barrel-aged' manhattan ($12) was fine, if somewhat unremarkable.

 

Heading into the mains, my wife's Shrimp and Grits (I believe $24 but was on the special menu) brought nicely cooked shrimp but it lacked a depth of flavor and finesse, though the fried pickled okra on top was a hit.  My roasted Branzino (also on specials menu but was in the mid-twenties) came with a mediterranean-themed sauce of tomato/olive/artichoke hearts.  Theme was the same of a very nicely cooked protein, but accompanying flavors were surprisingly bland.

 

Finished with a coconut cake that ended up being one of those ubiquitous jarred parfait situations that are everywhere in gastropubs these days, but daaaaaaaamn that was a good dessert.

 

Bottom line - everything ordered from the regular menu was good to very good.  Everything ordered from the specials menu was a bit disappointing but not bad.  For $112 post tax but pre-tip (I also had two draft beers), it wasn't a bad deal.  Just not quite worth the 'hot spot' designation, in my opinion.

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We were up in Pittsburgh so my cousin could register for college classes Saturday.  We dropped her off and headed to Shadyside as Mom and I used to always shop there when I was younger.  It is a lot more commercial than it once was, but still has some fun places.  We wanted to eat lunch at The Yard as I ate there last time with my cousin and their "grilled cheese" selections are really good for well done bar food.  They are huge and really messy, but great.  The tomato soup with them is really good.  But there was an hour wait, so we went to the little French cafe up the street which was also packed.  So we ended up at Mercucrios which I think was Mulberry Street.  They had all sorts of awards for their gelato, but it was a really cold and rainy day Saturday so we weren't in the mood for that.  We had the rustica salad and the melanza panini.  The salad was so good, we probably could have just split that, it was a big portion.  The panini was fine, I liked the veggies, it could have used a tiny bit more seasoning on the vegetables, but was a nice sandwich ratio of filling, bread, veg to cheese.  I love paninis.  The pizza looked good.  We stopped in Prantl's Bakery and I got some petits fours for Easter and these delicious little twist rolls. All the baked goods just looked amazing.  My cousin might be bringing some of there goodies home with her on breaks!

 

After picking her up she was hungry and had wanted to try Mineo's pizza on Murray Ave.  So we went that way.  We completely over-ordered in terms of pizza size, but it was delicious and the leftovers have been good.  We got a s Sicilian style with red sauce, pepperoni and cheese.  I loved this pizza it was similar to deep dish in that it had a thick crust, but the dough was less crusty.  It was delicious.  We also got a normal crust white pizza with feta, olives, bacon and spinach that was also delicious.  Note: It is cash only, but they have an ATM.  

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It's not exactly off the beaten track (Yelp had it as the #7 favorite readers' restaurant in the USA for 2015), so the lines are long, but Gaucho Parilla Argentina is worth the hassle. Lots of grilled Argentine meat sandwiches (with chicken, seafood, and fish -- way more variety than you'd likely see in Argentina), empanadas, a few small plates like a seafood stew (caldo de mer), provoletta. Very casual and fairly cheap -- you order at the counter. 

We ate well in our long weekend in Pittsburgh (Aug. 2015), but Gaucho Parilla Argentina was definitely the highlight of the trip. It's located on Penn Avenue, down at the end of the Strip, so parking is a hassle on the weekends too. Still, it's worth it.

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Going to a wedding in Pittsburgh in the not too distant future. If you had just one dinner you could have in Pittsburgh where would it be?

Open to all cuisine, low, middle and high end are all possible. Would like a place with good cocktails and a decent wine list though, if possible.

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