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Mar 23, 2010 05:31 PM

NON-hip places in Pittsburgh? I.e., old-fashioned, real Pittsburghy spots?

Hi. I'm about to travel to Pittsburgh and am looking for places to eat that have been around awhile. I have absolutely no interest in anything "hip" or "trendy." I know about Primanti Bros., the O, Pamela's, even Gab & Eat in Carnegie (my favorite breakfast spot). I used to travel to Pittsburgh quite a bit in the nineties, and I was just looking over some notes from a 1999 trip. Here are some places I had written down but didn't get around to trying...and that was pretty much my last trip there for a long time. Do any of these still exist? Are they any good? Can you recommend others in a similar vein? Pricier places are fine. Bars too! Thanks!

Bloomfield Bridge Tavern
Chiodo's in Homestead
Pleasure Bar
Oyster House (on Market Square?)
Jerry's in Bridgewater
Big Jim's in the Hollow
Dick's Diner in Murrysville
Spaghetti Steak House in Belmont?

Big Jim's
201 Saline St, Pittsburgh, PA 15207

Bridge Tavern & Restaurant
222 S Market St, Williamsport, PA 17702

Steak House
29 Main St, Wellsboro, PA 16901

Dick's Diner
4200 William Penn Hwy, Murrysville, PA 15668

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  1. Chioda's is gone. Most of the rest of those places that I am familiar with are still whatever they were. You might add Pamela's in the strip to that list. There are other Pamela's around, also. Also consider Tessaro's and Del's. These all fit the profile of your list.

    Tessaro's Restaurant
    4601 Liberty Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15224

    1. You have a pretty good list for someone that dosen't live in Pittsburgh! I would highly recommend The Bloomfield Bridge Tavern, Oyster House, and Big Jim's, at least based on what you are looking for. If you go to Big Jims, take your appetite! One that I would add to the list is Bob's Garage,

      just off of 28 near Fox Chapel. This is a unique place!

      Big Jim's
      201 Saline St, Pittsburgh, PA 15207

      Bob's Garage
      1372 Freeport Rd, Pittsburgh, PA 15238

      1. I was only there once 40 years ago but how about The LeMont?


        1 Reply
        1. As Dave has pointed out, in the non-hip Pittsburgh institution category, Tessaro's and Del's both belong. They're almost across the street from each other right near Bloomfield Bridge Tavern, so you might never have to leave Bloomfield!

          On the pricier, fancier end, The Carlton is the only one (IMO) worth the expense for old-school white linen-type service.

          From a CH perspective, BBT and Big Jim's are the best calls from your original list.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Panini Guy

            But then, I don't know how you'd categorize Yo Rita's in this field. Not old fashioned, but 'hip' doesn't quite fit, either. Certainly worth the trip over to the South Side.

            Yo Rita
            1120 E Carson St, Pittsburgh, PA 15203

          2. Ended up at Tessaro's my first night in town with a group of about 8 and loved it! Great drinks, great service, great food. A+, and just what I was looking for. Not as keen on Big Jim's...loved the location and the atmosphere, but my meatball sandwich was very dry! Had to ask for extra sauce, which helped but couldn't overcome the particleboard texture of the meatballs! Continue to love breakfast at the Gab n Eat in Carnegie. Also had a peculiar but delicious pastrami sandwich at the old Jewish deli across the street from Jerry's Records....Thanks for all the tips, everybody. In my opiniton, Pittsburgh is the most underrated city in the U.S., and up there among the two or three most physically beautiful.

            Tessaro's Restaurant
            4601 Liberty Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15224

            1 Reply
            1. re: mrfinewine

              Glad to see you liked your choices. I love Gab n Eat too, they serve a great breakfast, but if you get the chance try them for lunch. I think their burgers are tremendous!