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Downtown Pittsburgh Dining

We're heading to Ohio for a wedding next month and will be staying at the Marriott in Pittsburgh both going & coming back. Looking for some good dinners and breakfasts in the downtown area. One thing we've come to like is where the locals go for breakfast - not chains, but the neighborhood places that make great breakfasts. Looking forward to hearing from you folks from the other side of the Keystone State!

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  1. There are several Marriotts around. If you're staying at the one at 945 Penn Avenue, you're in the same building as Sonoma Grille. Across the street is Cerviche, and a block down is Nine on Nine. Different "flavors" but all good. The cross streets are 9th and 10th, so you can figure haw far it is to Pamala's on 21st street for breakfast. It's just a block off of Penn Ave.

    7 Replies
    1. re: yayadave

      Though I've seen mixed reviews on this board, Six Penn is a dependable downtown option. I second Nine on Nine as well.

      Breakfast: head to the Strip. DeLuca's, Pamela's, and — my favorite — JoJo's.

      1. re: yayadave

        Yes, we'll be at the Marriott Courtyard at 945 Penn Ave. Thank for the recommendations. I'll post out experience after we get back.

        1. re: bucksguy14

          I would definitely give Sonoma Grille a try--one of my favorite restaurants in the Burgh and it has a fantastic wine list. Ceviche is owned by the same company, so that I suspect it is also of high quality.

          1. re: MrKotter

            I agree with all 3 breakfast recs. The atmospheres are different and you may want to decide based on wait time. You may want to have your coffee at either La Prima Espresso or 21st Street Coffee, both very close to DeLucca's and Pamela's. Also swing by Enrico Biscotti. I'd also recommend taking a walk through and having a drink or glass of wine at the Renaissance.

            1. re: 42duffy

              but there is one chain on your journey you must visit: Eat 'n Park. I am a huge fan, and love their entire menu, from breakfast to dinner. They do a baked cod that is out of this world, and all their shakes, pies, cookies are delish.

              1. re: 42duffy

                I agree with your choice of La Prima...it is on the corner of Penn and 21st...Sam is the owner and my wife...who is not from Pitt loves this place above all others for coffee....it is the absolute best!!!At Enrico's..ask for Larry Lagitutta...he is a great guy

              2. re: MrKotter

                Sorry, had a meal at Sonoma Grill and it was horrid....the waiter forget almot half of our meal....and just wrote it off to in-competent kitchen staff...the biggest cop-out for all waiters...and never offered to comp anything!!!

          2. On your return trip, if you have a little free time in the morning, a stroll around the strip to pick up some cheese, olives, salami, chocolate, coffee beans, etc. to take home might be fun. The strip is around Penn Ave. from about 12th to 21st St. where the breakfast recs seem to be. Bring a cooler.

            2 Replies
            1. re: yayadave

              yayadave, the cooler is standard equipment on our trips. I'll be chekcing out "the strip" for some take home goodies!

              1. re: bucksguy14

                In that case, on another thread someone mentioned Gerber chickens from Kidron, Ohio. If you're in that area.
                http://www.gerbers.com/index.cfm

            2. Also go to Parma Sausage...the absolute best for proscuitto, sausage, and all stuff Italian!!! Ask for Darin

              1. I would choose Seviche over Sonoma Grill. To note, Seviche does not take reservations and seating is somewhat limited. The BF and I sat at the bar but had a wonderful time watching the prep, talking to the chef, and trying various tapa style dishes (I really enjoyed the mussels prepared with curry). I've only been to Sonoma Grill for lunch but was underwhelmed and the decor reminded me of an Olive Garden. Six Penn is decent (actually owned by the same group as the aforementioned Eat N' Park - a stab at the more upscale market). In addition, you must visit the strip if you have a weekend morning available. I like the buckwheat pancakes at De Luca's or the potatoes at Pamela's. 21st Street Coffee and Pennsylvania Macaroni Company (aka PennMac - a grocery type store with all things Italian and a great cheese counter) are must visits as well. Penn Ave Fish Company (strip) is also a great resource and/or place to grab lunch. I've heard good things about their fish tacos and need to try them!