Did you know that Pittsburgh is home to the third largest analog clock in the world? Yeah, neither did I, but it’s the first thing I learned when arriving on the South Side this past weekend. Why would you ever care? I couldn’t tell ya. But every city has it’s thing, you know the one thing that really holds no significance but you still brag about to visitors, and this just happens to be one of them.
But okay let’s be real, Pittsburgh is awesome. Other really cool Pittsburgh things?
YINZERITAS (we’ll come back to this because it deserves a full blog post in itself)
Baseball (home to the gorgeous PNC park)
Free metro rides
East Carson Street (again, we’ll circle around to this)
This past weekend I took the trip down to Pitt to visit one of my best friends from high school (Matt). I’d never been before so I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I had always heard good things. We spent all day Friday in the car (about a 5 1/2 hour drive from Syracuse, minus any stops, but your girl has a fairly tiny bladder soo), and got in around dinner time, where we headed to one of the best Mexican restaurants I’ve ever been. Called Steel Cactus, it featured a super cute upstairs bar, where we settled in for happy hour. And now we have arrived at my favorite part- the ordering of the Yinzerita.
Unless you are from Pitt, I’m going to go ahead and guess you have no idea what a Yinzerita is. Essentially, its a margarita… on steroids. The term “yinz” comes from the slang form of “you guys” that Pittsburgians frequent. How it got turned into a margarita, I’ll never know, but I guess you have to name your drinks something! I got the raspberry flavored rita’, a cup bowl of crushed ice, raspberry flavoring, tequila and topped with a Corona. SO. GOOD.
Along with my drink were the equally delicious nachos, which I would give a 10/10. The portion size was more than enough too, plenty to take home for later. All in all, a great place to eat, especially during happy hour deals!
From here we were off to check an item off my ever-growing bucket list… visiting every pro MLB stadium in the country! This time, PNC Park!
So far I’ve been fortunate enough to have visited Coors Field, Dodger Stadium, AT&T Park and Yankee Stadium, but as far as views are concerned, San Fran still takes the cake. I must say PNC Park takes a close second though, I mean just look at this backdrop!
Not only this, but to get to the field all we had to do was hop on a free metro that took us only a block away from the stadium. I do have to give the city props for this- I remember spending $100 on Ubers and then still walking at least 10 blocks to get to the Giants stadium back in April. In this aspect, you win Pittsburgh, you win.
Later that night we went out on the town, popping into a few bars on East Carson Street. If you’ve never heard of ECS before, it’s a strip of over 40 bars in clubs in just about 10 blocks. If you think you’ve gone out before and seen crazy, I can guarantee you’ve seen nothing like this. By the time we were headed home for the night, you could barely move on the streets because of the sheer number of people.
The next morning before turning around and hopping back in the car we stopped at Nadine’s, a hole-in-the-wall diner only about three blocks from Matt’s apartment. About the size of a trailer and only fitting about 8 tables, not to mention the fact that it was featured on Guy Fieri’s show Diner’s, Drive-Ins and Dives, it’s almost always packed, so we squeezed our way in and quickly grabbed a few seats at the bar.
I exaggerate when it comes to food a lot. Most everything that touches my lips is the “best thing I’ve ever tasted in my life.” When I get hungry, I tell people I could eat an entire cow. But when I say the omelette I ate here beats all other omelettes I’ve ever had, I mean it. Buttery, eggy, ham and cheese goodness. Proof is that I couldn’t even remember to take a picture of it before I ate it:
By the time we left Pitt, I was stuffed and tired and dreading the long drive home, but so thankful that I came to visit. I am not a city person by any means, but as far as cities go, Pittsburgh has my stamp of approval. Not overly crowded, easy to get around (minus the three bridges that were down when we were there, but even then I would say we hardly sat in traffic), and close enough to Syracuse for a weekend trip!