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Nov 3, 2008 12:40 PM

Pittsburgh this weekend

I am heading to Pittsburgh this weekend and was looking for some recommendations for lunch, dinner and bars/pubs. Any cuisine and price point is fine, just nothing overly dressy or formal. Sorry to be vague; I've never been and was just hoping for a few top picks. Thanks!

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  1. Anywhere up and down East Carson Street will lead you to bars and pubs. Lots of lunch and dinner places as well. You will get recommendations for Fat Heads, Primanti's, Bruschetta's. I like Thai Me Up for Thai.

    Smokin Joe's and Fat Heads both have an unbelievable amount of great beers that are hard to find around the country. It's worth a stop just to have a pint at either and take in the list.

    For a memorable dinner, I would go to the Church Brewery on Liberty Avenue in Lawrenceville.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Mr Siegal

      Carson St is indeed a great destination. Some additional ramblings include:
      Smiling Banana Leaf Thai cuisine on Bryant St in Highland Park, Girasole Italian in Shadyside which has advantage of Mulberry St Gelato upstairs and Coffee Tree roasters across the street. For Saturday Brunch/Lunch just cruise the Strip District: Enrico's for either
      lunch or Biscotti, 21st Coffee, La Prima Espresso.

    2. Hey, I'm originally from Stamford! Bring a couple Colony pies with you (hot oil & stingers of course) and I'll take you anywhere you want to go ;-)

      Carson St. and the Strip are both good centers of activity for a short trip. But I'd do the Strip on Saturday morning. That's when it's really buzzing. There's nothing fancy there. It's all pretty much fairly inexpensive and most ethnic - lot of Italian (Colangelos next to La Prima is good), street vendors offering thai and tacos and bánh mì, some good espresso, fish and sausage markets, kitchenwares, the original Primantis, small ethnic groceries and maybe most important, the cheese counter at Pennsylvania Macaroni. Nothing like it in Fairfield County that I can remember.

      Carson St. from 10th to 29th is just one long string of restaurants, bars, coffeehouses and tattoo parlors. You can find almost anything there, although not everything merits a recommendation. I'd recommend Dish Osteria for good Sicilian seafood, but they're often booked solid. 17th St. Cafe would be a good choice as well. Or go with whatever smells good.

      Having taken a look at your page, I think the Firehouse Lounge on Penn at 25th might be your style. Probably the best mixologists in town. Very good and different bar food as well. But if you're up for something funkier, Gooski's in Polish Hill has an amazing jukebox, good Polish food, a great beer selection, live music, a diverse crowd (to put it mildly) and is just downright funky in every meaning of the word.

      The other thing to do is to take the incline from Station Square up to Mt. Washington and have a drink or two overlooking the city. That's probably the ultimate Pittsburgh experience.

      Enjoy your weekend!

      2 Replies
      1. re: Panini Guy

        Thanks for the recommendations. I looked into the inclines - that's now a definite to-do on my list. Any thoughts on which restaurants to hit up there?

        1. re: AndreaB

          I believe the Pgh CH consensus would be:
          a) have drinks only, then go back down and find somewhere on E. Carson or downtown (or anywhere else, really). You can get drinks and a view at several places.
          b) if you had to eat up there, Isabela on Grandview or Monterrey Fish Grotto if you want the view. But that view costs a couple extra bucks per plate than restaurants on E. Carson for the same (or better) food. To be fair, it's been 5 or 6 years since last at Isabela and several here vouch for the place as CH-worthy. MFG has been reliable in my experience.

      2. Dear Andrea B
        I was reading a link from the beginning of this year saying that you did demo classes at WS. I teach kids and adult pastry classes in NYC and without being indisrete I was wondering what the salary would be per class. I'm seing them on Thursday.