Archive for January, 2008

Veggies in the Hood

January 31, 2008

Since over half the team were at an all-day client meeting, Rob and I decided to pick something out of the ordinary and blogable, The Quiet Storm out in Garfield on Penn.   This was another old favorite back in the day, but I haven’t gone there for about 3 years.   All I remember was they had awesome soups and it was primarily a coffeehouse with a vegetarian menu.   The venue is eclectic and vintage – with neat trinkets to check out.   They supposedly have a killer brunch on Sundays.

What a surprise!   The menu was immense, with lots of selections for vegetarians and those that like their veggies to taste like meat (ie: gardenburgers).   I got a cup of chili and a falafel with jalapeno slaw.   Then Rob ordered a potato soup with buttermilk and a gyro burrito.   The service was a little slow but we weren’t too much of a hurry.   The “drug dealer” or “sketchy dude” that kept coming in and out of the restaurant got to be a little annoying, but it was a meal to remember.   

 coffee_bar.jpg      falafel.jpg      gyro_burrito.jpg

 the place                        the falafel                      the burrito

The Quiet Storm
5430 penn avenue
Map It!


Geno’s Fine Food…Indeed.

January 31, 2008

The SpaceTeam traveled, once again, into the very depths of Lawrenceville to uncover another gem, Geno’s. A very quaint bar/restaurant run by a very large, burley fellow with a thick Boston accent. His hands were like bear claws as he served us our drinks…they looked like ‘Killin’ Hands’. The gentle giant then brought us our food…of the bar variety:

Chili Garlic Bread Sticks Meatball Sandwich Deluxe Steak Sandwich

Dan & Kristin both started with the chili which got rave reviews. Kristin followed up her chili with an order of Garlic Bread, which was to die for. Rob and Dan both split a Homemade Meatball Sandwich and a Deluxe Steak Sandwich…both incredible (although a little overtoasted on the bun). And Brian also had the Deluxe Steak sandwich. The alcoholics in the group (i.e. Rob & B) ordered a Guinness and a Dogfish Head respectively. Eclectic atmosphere for a bar/restaurant…local art adorned the walls along with some old Pittsburgh city photography from the early 1900’s. Great place to eat and enjoy each other’s company and you won’t leave hungry.

Bonus: Foster’s Meats (Butcher) is located right next store.

Extra Bonus: They don’t wash their hands when they cut up your meat.

Geno’s Restaurant and Big Belly Deli
5147 Butler Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15201
(412) 781-3432
Map It!

Back to the Grind or Will it Blend?

January 28, 2008

For Monday, the lunch group made a stop at W.g. Grinders in Bloomfield.   Our mission was to get a labcoat at the local Uniforms store.   We’re using it as a prop for this video we’re doing at the Addys.   Reluctantly, I am the star of this video. 😉    Anyway, I opt’ed for a soup and salad since I pretty much gorged over the weekend.    I had a tomato bisque and a small Southwestern Chicken Salad.    Both were delicious.    The salad was especially good – nice and spicy – normally I will buy a sandwich here since that’s their speciality.     But I’m a convert!    Here’s a link to their menu.

W.g.Grinders – 4765 Liberty Ave, 412-682-8000

 wg_salad1.jpg        wg_sammie.jpg

my soup and           rob’s sammie – buffalo chix

Trattoria Time

January 17, 2008

Thursday – for today, we did a late lunch and stopped at Piccolo Forno on Butler Street.   It’s a great little Italian restaurant in Lawrenceville with a modern flair.   The best part about it – is the pizzas which are done in the traditional Naples style.    I fondly remember the pies from the original Regina Margherita, which was in the same space.   Fortunately the recipes have stayed the same.   I ended up getting the Pasta Fagoli which was excellent to start.     Trying the remember all of the four pizzas we ended up getting.   I believe they were the Bianca, Quattro Stagioni, Quattro Formaggi, and the Focaccina Ripiena… fortunately there’s a menu online at their website.     It’s also a great place to go for dinner just remember to BYOB!

piccolo Forno – 3801 Butler Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15201 – 412-622-0111

 Bianca   Group Ensemble   Slice of the Stagioni

Bianca I presume            Group shot                     Stagioni Slice

A ‘Lot’ of Good Things

January 14, 2008

Friday’s adventurous group tackled an old favorite, Lot 17, in Bloomfield.  Always a good meal and a good beer, the Lot never disappoints.  On friday’s menu was a special Cajun Chicken & Shrimp over pasta…paired up with a Magic Hat #9 made Rob’s day.  Dan’s Turkey Sandwich looked scrumptious with bacon, lettuce, and cheese.   Brian attacked the Jalapeño Steak Wrap and Kristin took on the Grilled Chicken Wrap.  Lot 17 is a crowd favorite and comes highly recommended.    It’s an old Labwerkian fav.


Jalapeno Steak Wrap      Chicken Parm


brian’s steak wrap        ned’s chicken parm


Grilled Chicken Wrap      Cajun Shrimp and Chicken Pasta


kristin’s chicken            rob’s shrimp and chicken

wrap                            pasta

The Ghost of Thanksgiving’s Past

January 10, 2008

The immortal Carved Turkey Special at the Smallman Street Deli in the Strip District is indeed a treat. Reminiscent of the day-after-Thanksgiving leftover lunches I hold so dear, this sandwich includes hand carved turkey (no processed meat), lettuce, Swiss Cheese, tomato, and a heavenly herb mayo spread. Available every week on Thursdays, the Outlook calendar reminds me with a nice jingle and a memory of family thanksgiving dinner’s past. Clearly, this gets my pghslop stamp of approval. Now, it’s time to accept my turkey coma.

Carved Turkey Sandwich

Hot Sausage and a piece of Pie

January 9, 2008

Dan and I stopped by Graziano’s Pizzeria on Penn… another old favorite.    Watched the guy in front of me buy some Hurricane malt liquor – tons of beer 40s.    This is the best local place for some old school pizza.    Bring the napkins to sponge off the grease or whatever that is.    It’s right off of Penn near Main street.   The hot sausage hoagie was divine but causing some problems Houston.    Any other good local pizzeria’s out there?

Graziano’s 401 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15221-2135

hotsausage.jpg       dan.jpg
my lunch                dan’s lunch


January 8, 2008

Tram’s Kitchen was splendid…as seen in photo is remnants of Vermicelli w/chicken & the Saigon Soup in the background.  Meal starter…..2 Spring Rolls.   Atmosphere is much like my days in ‘Nam.

Tram’s Kitchen

Other bonus:  served by one-armed Vietnamese man who yells and pokes you with bamboo stick.

Kaya for Friday

January 4, 2008

So the lunch group went to Kaya for Kristin’s and Dan’s birthdays.   It’s been a favorite of ours since we moved into the Strip.   It’s a great place with good food and especially if you want a beer + is not very crowded for lunch.   It’s usually pretty packed at night.   You’ll probably be waiting at that hour.

I had the Angus Burger and an Anderson Valley Winter Solstice to drink.    The burger is huge!   It’s about an inch thick and is smothered in all sorts of condiments.   The best and unusual parts are the avocado and one fried egg!    It definitely was a grave digger.  

Angus Burger

There are two pools in this photo – one for the eye yolk and one for the cheese sauce.  

Also Kaya has some of the best sweet potato fries.   There’s also a great selection of brews on tap for a restaurant.   I picked the Anderson Valley Winter Harvest which is one of my favorite Christmas ales.     I of course felt obligated to finish first and be the talk of the table.     Happy Friday!

Happy New Meat!

January 4, 2008

While this isn’t a Pittsburgh restaurant experience, ’tis the season for sharing holiday stories….filled with friends, family, cocktails, cookies, and MEAT! A fleshtival of enormous proportions. Christmas Eve yielded the carving of an 8lb. Filet Mignon:

Christmas Filet 2 Christmas Filet

New Year’s was a butcher’s treat…ringing in 2008 with meaty goodness in the form of 1.25″, 2.25lb. T-Bones:

New Year’s T-Bone New Year’s T-Bone 2

I expect a cardiac arrest this year.