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Station Street Hot Dogs

I had a dream Friday night that I went to Station Street Hot Dogs.  Naturally, upon waking on Saturday morning,  a visit became my number one goal for the day.  Station Street Hot Dogs is Kevin Sousa’s (of Salt of the Earth renown) next-to-newest undertaking, the newest being Union Pig & Chicken, which I also have to check out.

Station Street Hot Dogs has a simple menu: hot dogs and french fries.  The ingredients are high-quality, and the hot dogs are topped creatively.  It’s an approach not unlike that of Franktuary, but this town is certainly big enough for two great hot dog joints to thrive.

The decor is simple, bright and clean.  For dining in, there are ample barstools, and there is also plenty of standing-room counter space.  I wasn’t aware of the setup, and had I known beforehand I wouldn’t have brought Baby Beez on this outing, since she squirmed for the few minutes I could actually get her to sit on the stool. Mr. Beez and I tag-teamed following her around as she walked up and down the aisle, waiving at people.

The staff is exceptionally friendly, and the service quick. The food was fresh and delicious.  I had heard about hot dogs that “snap” before, but never had one and really didn’t understand the concept. How could a hot dog snap? Were they crunchy?  These ones snap, I get it now, and they are tasty.

I had the Banh Mi dog, topped with pork liver, pickled cucumbers and onions, jalapeno, sweet chili and cilantro.  It was delicious.  The only downfall was with all the pickled vegetables, the bun became quickly soggy, but this was a minor issue and certainly didn’t spoil the dish.  The chili cheese dog was also VERY tempting to me, so I’m going to have to go back to try it.

Mr. Beez had a plain hot dog.  He’s not much of a hot dog fan, and even less of a fancy hot dog fan, so the appeal of Station Street was lost on him.  He did have an order of duck fat fries that he thoroughly enjoyed.  I ordered the regular fries, which were fresh and crispy and delicious.  Mr. Beez’ duck fat fries were also fresh, crispy, and delicious, but also a touch richer and saltier in taste.

There is a large parking lot, which is a huge draw for me.  After 12 years, I’ve succumbed to the Pittsburgher parking obsession, and I am much more likely to go somewhere that has ample and free parking, than if the parking is inconvenient or costs money.  Here, parking is no problem at all.

The clientele was about 2/3 hipsters, 1/3 miscellaneous mix of non hipsters.  It wasn’t packed while we were there, and I’d imagine that at an exceptionally busy time, the quantity of ironic moustachios and skinny jeans would be stifling.  I was wearing skinny jeans, flats, and a Red Meat t-shirt (which one hipster even complimented) so I suppose I fit right in.
Station Street on Urbanspoon

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Pittsburgh Burger Company

This week has been b-a-n-a-n-a-s.  Work has been crazytimes, and I tried to relax a little today because I have to dive right back into work tomorrow, and the week ahead doesn’t look like it will be much calmer.  The tricky thing about being a litigator is that you have to be sharp and creative and analytical all the time.  In busy weeks, your brain can get very tired, and if your brain doesn’t get un-tired, you get bogged down and sometimes it feels like your brain is foggy.  I’m trying to avoid that.  ANYWAY, to the matter at hand.

Tonight felt like a perfect night to go out for a family dinner.  Mr. Beez and I had a taste for Burgatory, but they unfortunately had a wait of more than two hours when we called at 5:30 pm.

Picture from POPCity

I read a POPCity article on the Pittsburgh Burger Company some time back, and Mr. Beez and I had filed it away as “some place to try in the future.”  This was a great night for it.  We both like to try new things, and Mr. Beez was keen to try wild game burgers.

The restaurant was not busy at all when we got there around 5:45 (having a toddler in tow means we eat early, or everyone is miserable).  Even when we left closer to 7, it was still pretty quiet.  The restaurant is in spitting distance of a Red Robin, and its prices and decor suggest it’s targeting the same clientele, I’m not sure this is the best location for a place like this to stand out.

The server was very quick and attentive.  Mr. Beez was excited to order a buffalo burger, but unfortunately they were out of both the buffalo and the kobe beef.  He ended up ordering the venison and said it was kind of dry (but I think venison is supposed to be dry).  He got his burger with french fries, and said they were so-so.

checkin' my messages...

Baby Beez is in a phase right now where she desperately WANTS to use silverware on her own, and doesn’t want any help with feeding herself, but she is terrible and messy with it.  We got her grilled cheese and mashed potatoes, and although she wasn’t interested in the grilled cheese, she was plenty entertained with sloppily feeding herself mashed potatoes.

I got the lamb burger with grilled onions, sauteed mushrooms, and monterey jack cheese. The burger was greasy (in a good way) and delicious.  I really enjoyed my burger, and was glad that I could request the salad bar instead of fries, but the salad bar, although fresh, wasn’t particularly interesting.  The desserts also looked tasty enough, but none of them stood out as particularly interesting or exciting.

Pittsburgh has a glut of inventive and delicious hamburger restaurants.  With the newer choices like Burgatory or Wingharts,  or the Pittsburgh legends FatHeads or Tessaro’s, Pittsburgh Burger Company fails to stand out.  It’s got a niche it can build on– although I believe other places may have some kind of wild game offering, it’s not the major focus.  Pittsburgh Burger Company does a great job with the wild game burgers themselves, but otherwise fails to distinguish itself from a Red Robin or the Fuddrucker’s that formerly inhabited its building.

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Pittsburgh Restaurants Where You Will Probably Get Yelled At, But It’s Totally Worth It

Family run dining establishments don’t have time for your foolishness!  Nor do they have time for your credit cards! (all of them are cash only)  They do however know how to put together a delicious meal at a great price.  You’ll probably get an earful at any of these Pittsburgh favorites, but the attitude is part of the charm.  The food’s well worth it, too!

1.  Tram’s Kitchen

 

You better know what you want to want, because these folks do NOT have the time to linger while you make your decision.  Lucky for you, it’s hard to make a bad pick at Tram’s.

2. Zorba’s


Do NOT talk on your cell phone when in line, and CASH ONLY!  ….but try the grilled chicken salad, it’s one of my absolute favorite lunches (it even comes topped with melty cheese and fries)

3. Apollo Cafe


You better know what you want, because the line moves quickly and the staff isn’t patient. (You want an egg & cheese breakfast sandwich with potatoes. Believe me.)

4.  Pamela’s

No we will NOT seat you before your whole party has arrived. No, we will NOT even put your name on the list.  Get everyone here, then we’ll talk.  Luckily the gruff folks are just doing crowd control.  Once you get in, the waitresses are extra sweet, and the strawberry hotcakes are legendary.

Is there anywhere else where you might have to take a yelling, but can expect a good meal?

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BeezusKiddo’s guide to never ever losing weight, ever

This weekend has been b-a-n-a-n-a-s.  There was, of course, Friday’s fun and gluttonous meal at Sonoma Grille.  Yesterday, I got some work done in the morning, in the afternoon Mr. Beez and I took Baby Beez to the Children’s Museum for a quick visit, and in the evening Mr. Beez and I had an outing with our friends Aimee and Larry!  It’s been a great time, but I’m beat!

Last night’s outing was the classic dinner in a show (in the reverse order).  The Second City is performing in Pittsburgh this weekend, and we got the best seats in the house–at a table right in front of the stage.

The Second City show was hilarious.  And luckily, Mr. Beez’ greatest fear– that he’s be pulled into the show– was not realized.  Phew! Because we had fancy seats, we also had table service, which meant that I drank tasty wine and wine and wine.  Good thing I didn’t pick “lose weight” or “drink less wine” as New Years Resolutions, because I have been doing terribly with both of those the last few days….(there’s always tomorrow!)

After the show we went to NOLA on the Square for dinner.  I had the Shrimp and Grits, and it was delicious– savory and salty and just a little spicy.

I just wanted a picture of shrimp and grits, so I found this on the internet. I of course forgot that I had a camera in tow and took no pictures last night.

I was not aware of this, but Aimee informed me that NOLA has very good Happy Hour specials. Apparently you can get a decent sized dish of red beans & rice or gumbo for $1 each, during happy hour. YUM.

So now we are at Sunday, and I have to scramble to get all kinds of things done around the house, put in some time writing a brief, do the grocery shopping (I already did the couponing), and do the laundry.  A big Steeler’s game is on today, so I may have that on while working on other things.  In an ideal world, I’d also go to the gym (I did get there yesterday!) but I can only hope I’ll get to that today…Time to get moving!