May 21, 2024

AlexEatsTooMuch April 2024 Restaurant and Event Roundup

April was so busy. I had something going on almost every day of the month. I tried a few new restaurants. I got invited to a few awesome events. I made a quick overnight trip to State College. I even got to do a couple of fun paid collaborations.

Restaurants

I was so busy I didn’t have a meal at a restaurant until the second week of the month. I started off strong with visiting Lawrence Hall, the new food hall in Lawrenceville specifically to try Loaded and Toma, two of the food concepts. They invited me in to try a whole table of different items from the two places. Loaded is a comfort food concept and Toma is a modern Italian food concept. I loved the food, especially the Korean Corn Dogs and Fried Chicken Sandwiches at Loaded, and the Pork Shank and Brisket Ravioli at Toma. I need to go back to try more from these two and the other concepts at Lawrence Hall.

I attended a special event at City Kitchen showcasing a cocktail collaboration with fellow Pittsburgh creator Berry in the Burgh. She worked with them on 3 berry cocktails that were available for a limited time. My dinner was the Steak and Chimichurri sandwich from Elevate at City Kitchen. This was one of the best savory sandwiches I’ve eaten. The ribeye was tender and the combination of garlic aioli and chimichurri was delicious.

I spent a night in State College. I started at try Antifragile Brewing Company in downtown State College. I tried a couple of beers and enjoyed hanging out while I was waiting to go to dinner. I want to try more of the beers at some point. It’s a shame this didn’t exist when I was a student. Then I went to Allen Street Grill for dinner. I don’t know the last time I ate there when I was in town, but I had a fantastic Cavatappi with veal Bolognese, spinach and parmesan Reggiano.

I got happy hour wings at Mad Mex. Their half-off wings during happy hour is one of the best deals in Pittsburgh.

I did some downtown drinking at The Warren, my favorite bar downtown. I’m there a couple of times a month at least. I followed it up with a Burger at Whiskey B’s. I had not eaten there since the rebrand. It was a great burger and I need to try some more on the new menu.

I ate some of the best dim sum I’ve eaten in Pittsburgh at Wei Lai Dim Sum, the new dim sum spot in the North Hills. We tried a whole bunch of items. My favorites were the Cold Chicken Noodles, Pork Rib Soup and Fried Crystal Dumplings. I can’t wait to go back there for the roast duck on weekends.

I got dinner at Primanti Bros for dinner when they did the BOGO for two cents. I still love a Primanti Bros sandwich from time to time. My go-to is the pastrami and egg.

I tried out the new restaurant FET-FISK in Bloomfield. They specialize in Nordic food. They were doing popups around Pittsburgh for years. We ordered a bunch of items. The best was the Roast Chicken with Lingonberry and Farmer’s Cheese.

I did happy hour at Tako on Taco Tuesday. I had no clue they have specials and you can order single tacos to mix and match. I might have to start going to that much more often. Post to come soon.

Food Trucks and Takeout

I drove back to Pittsburgh to attend the Three Rivers Beer Week Imperial Brunch at Dancing Gnome with Discover the Burgh and Michael of Hard of Beering. I was able to get Stunt Pig for the first time. I don’t know how I have not gotten to them yet. I got the Beef Cheek special sandwich and pig wings special. These were amazing and I need to get Stunt Pig so many more times. I also got a breakfast crunchwrap from Blue Sparrow which came with an amazing raspberry sauce.

I went to Eleventh Hour Brewing as part of the Pittsburgh Brewers Guild Three Rivers Beer Week Lawrenceville Brewery Crawl. I got a Bratwurst Burger from Blue Sparrow. I loved this sandwich with the beer cheese sauce and cabbage slaw. I also grabbed beers from Long Story Short and Burghers Brewing.

I got to try scones and spreads from the Scone Ranger. She dropped off a delivery of frozen scones I could bake at home and some spreads. They were delicious. She also does some popups where you can buy baked scones. I recommend checking out Instagram for where to find the Scone Ranger.

Events

I finally got invited to What’s New at PNC Park Media day. I attended with Discover the Burgh and Food is My Savior PGH. We had such a great time learning about everything new at the stadium this year. I was most excited about getting the scoop on all the new food and trying it all. My favorites were the Renegade Dog with pierogi, roast beef and pickles, the Hot Honey Chicken Biscuit and the new wings from Caliente Pizza. See the video for all the food details.

I attended Table Magazine Cocktail Shake-Off event. This is a new event showcasing bartenders from local restaurants. There was also great food from Café Momentum. I had a little too much fun and since I was not there in any official capacity, I took no photos or videos. I would definitely attend this again next year.

Like every year, I went to the Pirates Home Opener. It was cold and snowing and they lost. I still had a great time. I only took a few photos that day, so instead here are the photos of all the new food instead of a video.

I went to the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle Big Nosh Jewish Food Festival. They had a large selection of European Jewish foods and Israeli Foods. They had a ton of people show up for the first year. I would like to see it be a success in future years as well.

I partnered with Good Taste Pittsburgh to promote Say Cheese, a cheese tasting event at Kingfly Spirits. This was a good first event and I tasted a lot of cheese.

I went to Row House Cinema twice in a week. The first was for a special showing of The Room with Greg Sestero who played Mark in the movie. These are always a blast as he talks about the making of the film. They are also an interactive showing with callouts during the movie. Then I was back there for Cult-o-Rama to see Basket Case and Basket Case 2. These are so bad they are good cult films.

I was invited to be a test student at A Slice of New York Pizza dough making class. They purchased a bunch of small mixers and taught us about quality ingredients and the best way to make dough. I enjoyed the class and learned so much. We each got to bring home 3 balls of dough, cheese, sauce and a pan to bake our pizza after the dough rises. The classes are twice a month. If you can’t get in a class, buy a pizza. A Slice of New York is making some of the best NY Style pizza in the area.

I was invited by Wigle Whiskey to a creators launch party for their new Wigle Reserve line of Bourbon and Rye. They are offering straight, single barrel and cask strength varieties of each. I liked these a lot. They were used in cocktails throughout the evening. I also tried some new food items that are available at the distillery.

I went to the Beers of the Burgh 10th Anniversary event celebrating their 10th anniversary along with Brew Gentleman, Grist House and Hitchhiker Beer. They all partnered on a collaboration barrel aged stout. I’ve been visiting all three of them since they opened. I’m now excited to start more Beers of the Burgh events.

I went to a Riverhounds game. They are seriously a lot of fun and pretty cheap. The team is pretty good too.

I did a partnership with the Pittsburgh Opera. Somehow I’ve never been to the opera and this was a great opportunity to see one. I got to see The Passion of Mary Cardwell Dawson, a modern opera about the National Negro Opera Company. Please give the reel a watch and if inclined, go to the show.

Other

I did a really fun paid partnership with Nexium 24HR Heartburn Medicine. They reached out and I was like this is such a perfect partnership. I actually use Nexium every few months. I also love partnerships like this because I get to be a little more creative with my videos.

I’ve been eating a ton of brisket this month. A traditional Passover dish is a slow roasted brisket. I bought a giant one. Probably got about 25 servings out of it.