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Sep 15, 2011 05:21 AM

Road Food along I-70/I-76 for D.C. to Pittsburgh Trip?

I'm driving from D.C. to Pittsburgh and I'm looking for a good place--a diner or place popular with locals--that isn't too far off of I-70 or I-76. Any ideas/suggestions

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  1. Have made that drive more times than I could ever recount and have never come across anything I would go out of my way for.

    1. We make the trip several times a year and we always wait til we get to DC to have something good to eat! Pick up some banh mi in NOVA and have a nice little picnic somewhere, nothing worth stopping at along the way that I've ever found.

      1. Summit Diner is worth a stop, and it's about half-way. It's just off the Turnpike in Somerset.

        Summit Diner
        791 N Center Ave, Somerset, PA 15501

        6 Replies
        1. re: JohnnyKBar

          It's nothing spectacular, but it's easy to get to and cheap. (Just go down to very end of the turnpike ramp and make a right at the light.) Most/all pies are good at Summit Diner, so worth it to stop even just for pie perhaps. Plenty of local regulars seem to stop in.

            1. re: Fibber McGee

              Mon - Fri: 5:00 am - 10:00 pm
              Sat - Sun: 5:00 am - 12:00 am

              It's been a couple years, but their breakfast was good & plentiful.

              1. re: JohnnyKBar

                Excellent. I usually go to Huddle House or Kings when driving through Pennsylvania because I can get in and out quickly, but it's nice to know I do have this option when I make the trip in November.

                1. re: Fibber McGee

                  they have their own butcher on site. a full (after 15 mile hike) dinner for two for less than thirteen dollars (plus tip)

          1. Like Whigsboy and Rick, I have driven this route more times than I can count. I could probably make the drive to DC or Philly with my eyes closed, and may have on a couple occasions. And...I have never once found anything along the way to eat, save for a quick stop for some fast food.

            However, I have not tried the Summit Diner, despite knowing exactly where it is. I just never once thought to stop in there. Maybe I'll give it a shot sometime in the near future. It's in a good place for a stop.

            Reading the Post-Gazette yesterday, though, I noticed that Munch did a write-up for Pine Tavern in Somerset, which has an exit off the turnpike. I've never been to Pine Tavern, had not previously heard of it, and don't know if it's any good. For what it's worth, Munch generally reviews greasy spoon and ethnic type joints and is rarely too effusive or too damning in his praise, and I've found his various suggestions to be very hit-or-miss. Probably more hits than misses, but it's fairly close.

            Anyway, Pine Tavern looks to be typical bar food from the write-up, so if that's your thing it might be worth checking out. Maybe others on the board have some experience with this place. I am mentioning it on this thread just because it caught my eye.

            The article:

            Summit Diner
            791 N Center Ave, Somerset, PA 15501

            1 Reply
            1. re: MonMauler

              Funny you would mention the Summit Diner. I was in Lancaster the last couple of days, and stopped at the Summit for lunch. While I try to eat healthy food, when I got there the had chicken and gravy over waffles, with a side of mashed. That's all it took for me to forget salads. Of course I finished the meal off with a slice of banana cream pie. Delicious!

              Over the years, I've been to the Pines several times. If I'm traveling alone and stay over in Somerset it's a good choice for a decent meal and a drink or two. They have a friendly bar, and the food, while not great, is pretty good.


              Summit Diner
              108 S State St, Clarks Summit, PA 18411

            2. Out of the Fire Cafe is just 1 mile from the Donegal I-70/I-76 turnpike exit. It is truly an oasis of dining excellence that we recently found on a trip through the area. Don't miss their house smoked salmon platter for a starter. It's byob. Seemed to be very popular with the locals and we can see why.


              Out of the Fire Cafe
              3782 State Route 31, Donegal, PA 15628