Mike’s Travelogue: Penn-cil in a Pittsburgh Trip
SPONSORED POST – Growing up, I always thought Pittsburgh would be ugly. The old stadiums and steel mills that had clearly seen their best days. When I finally visited there in college, I found out that nothing could have been further from the truth. After a resurgence and influx of investment in the 1990’s, Pittsburgh might be the most underrated city in America. It is nestled in the hills with bridges over rivers and tunnels through cliff faces. It is, in a word, beautiful. Especially in October with autumn in full effect.
Pittsburgh in the fall and football are practically synonyms. It is considered to be in the “Cradle of Quarterbacks,” with Hall of Famers George Blanda, Johnny Unitas, Joe Namath, Joe Mantana, Dan Marino and Jim Kelley all born nearby.
Our food tour of the Steel City starts with donuts at Better-Maid Donut Company (1178 Steuben Street). How good does a sour cream donut sound?
Lunch is easy. You simply cannot go to Pittsburgh without trying the sandwich at Primanti Brothers (multiple locations). They are famous for offering a grilled steak patty, coleslaw, French fries, tomatoes and provolone. Personally, I’d ditch the colseslaw but there is something totally childlike and satisfying about those French fries built right into the sandwich!
Before dinner, hit up the Summit (200 Shiloh St) for a lounge with a sweet view of the skyline. They also have popcorn to keep your salt levels up.
Then for dinner, let’s go with pizza. No cuisine changes more from city to city and every east coast region has it’s own take. Head to Ephesus Pizza (219 Fourth Ave) where they have more toppings than you could handle, including kebob and Moroccan chicken and dates.
If the weather is warm enough, the best way to see Pittsburgh is from the water. The rivers have boat tours which cover everything from the city’s history of hard labor to island tiki experiences, depending on your preferences.
For some culture, the Andy Warhol Museum (117 Sandusky Street) is a must. The famed pop artist is from Pittsburgh and the museum is huge, with more than 1,000 prints, 4,000 photographs, and 900 paintings by the artist.
And at the center of the trip is Heinz Field, it’s rabid fans and their spinning yellow towels. It’s a 20-year old gem which holds nearly 70,000 fans who have grown up obsessed with football. Seattle fans may be outnumbered there, but there is still sone unfinished business from 2005 that you may need to cheer for.
Pittsburgh is a different kind of place. A hard exterior with some softer, cultural experiences underneath. A great place to watch football, eat like a champ, and see a culture very unlike Seattle.
Stadium: Heinz Field
Stadium Food: Pierogis or more Primanti Brothers
Seattle haunt: Good luck!