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Apr 8, 2008 07:07 AM

Recs for Oakland (Pittsburgh)?

Hi! I'm going to be staying in the Oakland neighborhood at the Holiday Inn Select (100 Lytton Ave) for a conference this weekend. I'm looking for affordable places preferably within walking distance for a burger and a beer (local microbrews) and coffee and breakfast during the week. I'm not a fan of chains, so please recommend independent places where I can a little local color.

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  1. For breakfast, within walking distance - Pamela's 3703 Forbes Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3408 Phone: (412) 683-4066. Crepe thin pancakes are slices of heaven. You will understand why there is a line to get in after 10am, on a weekend.

    Oakland, being a college neighborhood, is best for the sub 30-year old and those young at heart.

    Fuel & Fuddle 212 Oakland Ave. Pittsburgh, PA 15213 - Phone: 412-682-3473. brew house and above average burgers. I hope that it's not a chain. It's too good for that.

    Hemingway's Cafe 3911 Forbes Avenue Oakland, PA 15213 - Phone: 412-621-4100
    Beer specials and good food.

    Original Hot Dog Shop 3901 Forbes Avenue Oakland, PA 15213 - Phone: 412-621-7388
    This is known as the Dirty O. More known for its french fries than it's dogs. It's not the best looking place but, it's a semi-landmark of Pittsburgh cuisine (along with Primanti Bros) Get a small fries to go and sit across Forbes, on the wall, and watch the world walk by.

    Peter's Pub 116 Oakland Ave. Pittsburgh, PA 15213 - Phone: 412-681-7465
    I had never had a bad meal or poor service here. It does the 'college bar' better than most.

    For Indian or Mexican, try Atwood St, about 15 minutes walk from your hotel.

    For something in the semi-mature range, try Squirrel Hill. You can take any 61A, B, C, D or F bus for less than $2. Get a transfer from the bus driver, when you pay, for 50 cents, for your return trip. Better than paying full fare each way. Exit at Forbes and Murray Ave.

    Intelligent dive-ish bar = the Sq. Hill Cafe (the Cage). 5882 Forbes Ave at Murray Ave. 100 import and micros in the coolers. One or two local drafts on tap. Pro chef making above average burgers, fish and bar food. Micro and import specials Mon-Sat.

    Silky's on Murray Ave is very sports oriented. Quite a few drafts and good bar food.

    Sq. Hill has a second Pamela's for breakfasts and lunch. It's right across the street from the Cage.

    For pizza, try Mineo's, Aiello's & Napoli's, all on Murray Ave.
    Walk Murray, from Forbes to Philips for many local & ethnic restaurants
    Same with Forbes Ave, between Murray and Shady Ave. Both are short business zones.

    A good tip is to pick the free Pittsburgh City Paper. Many ads for bars and restaurants.

    Also check out for bars and taverns. The reviews can be a bit dated but, at least, you can get an address and phone number. Use Zip codes 15213 for Oakland and 15217 for Sq. Hill.

    Good luck and welcome to Pittsburgh!

    1. In addition to eljimmo's recommendations, I'm a fan of Red Oak Cafe at 3600 Forbes for sandwiches, etc. Also, South Craig Street (across from the Museum) has a few local spots: french, a noodle shop, Indian, Middle Eastern.

      2 Replies
      1. re: k squared

        I agree with k_squared - S Craig St. has some tasty places. Lulu's Noodles and Union Grille are both favorites. Also, two coffee shops on the corner of Forbes and S Craig: one national and one local. Choose wisely, as they say.

        1. re: k squared

          Red Oak is also really great for breakfast, and they have a Saturday brunch.

          Oakland is full of students, so if that's not your scene, beware.

          Fuel & Fuddle is probably your best "beer & burger" option.