Tag Archives: beignets

[The Steel City]: Pittsburgh, PA

I visited Pittsburgh (my first time) recently for a conference — turned out to be nice place! I thought it would be different (not exactly sure what I was expecting) – when you travel quite a bit for work it is hard to know what to expect sometimes.

It is not like Philly.

It has many bridges.

It is apparently safer to walk as compared to taking a cab (per a local restaurant owner).

Unexpectedly good food scene.

Decent Fall colors.

And yes, I did set foot in the Heinz Stadium — hello from my Boston fan!

My travel foodie experience was great — for the first night I tried an Argentinian place in the Strip District (Gaucho Parrilla). Crazy huge blackboard menu. You order first and then the server brings the food to the table. Seafood and potatoes side are worth trying. The highlight was definitely the campfire sweet potatoes side dish (with toasted marshmallow and all)! The food was freshly-made and flavorful — not spicy hot but had a nice blend of spices.

myFact: A cab driver informed me that Pittsburgh has >100 bridges!
Gaucho Parrilla – Argentinian food in Pittsburgh!
Pittsburgh Downtown!

Conferences are great for networking and socializing. I get to meet some of my old (and new) friends. I explored Pittsburgh restaurants with my partner in crime, P — we tried Argentinian, Mediterranean and finally, a gourmet meatball place – Mercato right near the convention center — nice variety of options for all tastes (including vegetarian meatballs), huge portions and a nice vibe. You can get your choice of meatballs — as a slider (I went for it), or over pasta etc. with variety of sauces/sides. For dessert we enjoyed their freshly made ricotta doughnuts with powdered sugar (similar to beignets) with chocolate sauce! We were in heaven.

Found a neat gourmet meatball (Mercato) place near the convention center! Veggie ball slider with parmesan and pesto sauces.
Tater-tots poutine at Mercato! It was delish!

Wrapped up my trip with a local-dish “pierogies” — European/American version of dumplings with a cheese-potato filling cooked in butter and fried onions. Yum!

Until next time Pittsburgh. Go Pats!


New Orleans: Culinary Experience!

What can I say – NOLA is a foodie’s paradise. I have visited New Orleans three times so far and every time I’m blown away. Love the seafood. Love the bread pudding. Love the beignets. Love. Love. Love.

During one of my trips last year my parents were able to visit NOLA with me. I was busy with work but they explored New Orleans and thoroughly enjoyed their trip! My dad writes to my sister S after the trip that really sums up what New Orleans is all about –

“NOLA visit was great. We stayed at the historic Hotel Monteleone which is in the heart of downtown just a few blocks away from the Mississippi river walk. It is an old French area known as French Quarter. Our hotel was more than hundred years old.
We enjoyed the local Cajun cuisine, the freshly made pralines and the seafood was good. The variety in the food and the serving is amazing. Since this area was also under Spanish control the food variety multiplies.
NOLA downtown is a very lively place with musicians on the streets, Jazz originated here they say, street art and art galleries in old settings, every other shop is a specialty restaurant some even hundred years old. Tourists are on their feet walking around and enjoying. Two days we walked a lot along with them until we were just tired. The street cars are also a century old and well-maintained. We enjoyed the ride.”
Shrimp in BBQ sauce.
Blackened Catfish!