Pit stop in Pittsburgh
On my way to Toronto, I decided to stop by Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to cross it off my list of places I need to visit. To be 100% honest with you, my interest in Pittsburgh was very, very low. I didn't have any particular reason, I guess I just had this impression that it was a very "meh" city. My experience there didn't dramatically change my prejudgment, but it was pleasantly surprising & it's definitely worth a visit. If I go back, I would definitely spend more time in Lawrenceville—that's where it seems to be at.
How'd I get there? Car—I had the most epic drive from VA to PA... this was the first mini road trip I've been able to do since I came back to the States. It felt amazing. A combination of freedom, fun, and adrenaline (safely of course). On another note: When I got to Pittsburgh, holy wow, some of the streets are RE-DICK-YOU-LUS. As in, hairpin turns at like 50% incline, narrow as hell, terrible pot holes, etc. I had no idea how hilly Pittsburgh was. Watch out.
Fun Fact: For all the reasons above, Uber has a massive operation out there. You've probably heard already, but that's where they're working on the self-driving cars. The idea is if a self driving car can handle those roads, it'll be able to drive anywhere else in the US. Pretty smart. You'll see their fancy Uber-tech cars all over the place there.
Where did I stay? On Carson Street. Great location, very close to everything on that side of town. Carson Street is one of the more live areas of Pittsburgh and seemed to have a lot of college kids there. Fun story: I sat on the edge of the bed in my Airbnb to put on my shoes and then this happened:
You'd be surprised just how uncomfortable it is to sleep on a bed where one corner is sloping into the ground. I used spare towels at night to try and bring the bed to a semi-more normal level.
What did I eat? Pittsburgh sandwich (from Primanti Bros.), the main one everyone talks about which is two giant pieces of french bread with meat, coleslaw and fries smashed between. Not really impressive to be honest, kinda bland, but definitely filling. It's a novelty, I'd say. I was told you need to have pirogies, but unfortunately I did not.
Recommendations: The view from Mt. Washington (after you climb the mountain with your car, legs, scooter, or a donkey) is absolutely gorgeous. You can see the entire city. Really, really awesome. Shout out to Dave for the suggestion ;)
Pittsburgh definitely has a great beer scene. I'd go back just for that. I visited the very popular, Fat Heads, I had a great experience but I heard there are better places. They have a great selection of beers, so it seems like a great go-to spot. I also came across this awesome beer shop / theater called Bierport in the Lawrenceville side of Pittsburgh. This place is amazing! Massive selection of microbrews, small bar in the basement, and you can buy beer and go to the movie theater attached!
I met two random dudes at a bar one of the nights and they were beer fanatics. They were telling me about this place, Church Brew Works. Unfortunately, I didn't have the opportunity to go check it out, but it looks amazing.
At night time (or day time), you can go down to the big park on the corner of the city where the rivers intersect. There's a massive water fountain and large walking areas around it—feels almost as if it's floating on the water. It's really nice.
Lastly, go check out the Heinz History Center. It's pretty cool, but be prepared... there's A LOT of history. You could easily spend an entire day.
And lastly, lastly, go take a walk down the strip to see my last name on the side of a building. You already know, we outchea!
Random Observation: Super loud city. When I say loud, I'm referring to motorcycles and cars. Major motorcycle culture there. And, people really love to rev/ burn out their muscle cars randomly on the streets.
Thanks for reading! This has been the newest edition of "Andy Goes Places." Stay tuned to find out where he'll be next. He may just be in your city! Follow him on all the hip social media platforms like Instagram.