Strip District - walkable close to Convention Center. This is a cool thing to check out during the day (and morning), they have all kinds of street vendors and shops! all the cheap Pittsburgh themed apparel you can ask for! Stop by Wholeys (pronounced “wool-leys”) and check out all the meat/fish. They have grab and go fried smelts that are aaaaaaamzing.
Primanti’s (Pittsburgh tradition - 24 hours!) - Smallman Street, Strip District
46 18th Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
- great for lunch if you’re near the convention center. Fries and coleslaw ON sandwiches. Everything is amazing and go hungry.
South Side - take a cab. It’s walkable from Convention Center, but its a hike and you have to cross a bridge. Pretty much every bar/restaurant in the area will be good, but here are a few suggestions:
Nakama (sushi) - Carson Street, South Side
1611 E Carson St
Pittsburgh, PA 15203
- their sushi is amazing, and they have hibachi too.. it’s a little more pricey but delicious. AND if you are into Pittsburgh celebrity spotting, this is THE spot.
Mario’s (bro bar) - Carson Street, South Side
across from Nakama
- bros, cheap drinks (I can’t remember if they have food… but if they do don’t eat here) also occasional good celebrity sighting
The Smiling Moose (punk rock bar) - Carson Street, South Side
- cheap drinks, great crowd, moose-eoke is awesome if they have it upstairs, heard the chef is excellent but have never eaten here
Carson City (sports bar) - Carson Street, South Side
- food is ok, drinks are cheap, this is THE place to watch any game you want, great drink specials
Mike and Tony’s (gyros, late night) - Carson Street, South Side
- after the bar closes, go immediately to Mike & Tony’s and get yourself a gyro.
Primanti’s (late night) - Carson Street, South Side
- you could get a sandwich, but you would probably be sick. I recommend Carson Street Fries, which are FULLY loaded and perfect drunk food
Jack’s (really Pittsburgh bar) - Carson Street, South Side
- if you aren’t afraid to hang out with some real yinzers… go have a drink at Jacks.
Smokin Joes (craft beer bar) - Carson Street, South Side
- good place to start the night and then bar hop down Carson!
Oakland- you’ll need to take a cab, this is college-town where Univ of Pitt, Carlow and kind of Carnegie-Mellon campuses are. Do not eat at the “O” (aka, the Original Hot Dog Factory) NO MATTER WHAT ANYONE SAYS. Even when you are drunk. It’s disgusting, trust me.
Bars I would step foot in in Oakland: Pete’s Pub, Spice Cafe (downstairs… yes upstairs is an Indian restaurant)
Things to see: The Cathedral of Learning is that tall building you can see from everywhere, no need to tour but it’s interesting architecture. Heinz Chapel next door is beautiful. The Carnegie Museum of Art and Natural History are both around the corner (and there are cool record stores and restaurants on Craig Street. If you like Mediterranean, Ali Baba’s is great).
Shadyside - cab definitely needed. Carnegie Mellon is in the middle of Oakland/Shadyside. I lived in Shadyside for 4 years while I was in college at Chatham. Walnut Street has fun bars, shopping and restaurants but it’s not worth the trip unless you’re in the area for some other reason.
Bars that you probably shouldn’t believe anything you find written about me in the bathroom: The William Penn Tavern, Shady Grill, Harris Grill on Ellsworth Street (their food is amazing though)
Squirrel Hill - cab definitely needed. only worth mentioning for the food.
Breakfast - GO TO PAMELA’S, YOU’RE WELCOME
East Liberty - if you’re real Pittsburgh it’s only one word “sliberty”. Again, only worth going for the food:
Burgatory - I think the name says what you need to know