Pittsburgh Advice

Reads 768 • Replies 14 • Started Thursday, July 19, 2012 2:54:08 PM CT

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places 256 º 14:54 Thu 7/19/2012

Hey folks. I’m heading down to Pittsburgh, PA for the week leading into Canada’s Civic Holiday weekend and I’m looking for local advice on the following:

1) Must-visit beer destinations in the city. We’ll be in town Wednesday night (August 1st), all day Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, and Sunday until lunch (August 5th). So enough time for 5-8 spots.

2) Daytime tourist attractions. Right now the Duquesne Incline, National Aviary, Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History, and Strip look interesting, but I’m open to suggestions.

3) Safety tips i.e. is it safe to walk downtown at night? Are there any areas that we should avoid?

4) Local bottle shops. I’ve heard that PA has strange rules surrounding bottle purchases. What are the best beer stores and what do I need to know about the laws regarding beer sales?

Your help is greatly appreciated! Cheers

beers 6611 º places 149 º 15:23 Thu 7/19/2012

Where exactly are you staying in Pittsburgh?

beers 571 º places 22 º 16:59 Thu 7/19/2012

1. Church Brew Works, Fatheads, any of the Sharp Edge locations.

2. The Warhol Museum is fun, and it’s right next to the stadiums. Easy parking as well.

3. Other than the cultural district, not too much happens downtown at night. General precautions are all that is needed. Stay away from dark alleys, don’t talk to strangers. My biggest advice on this front when downtown or anywhere in Pittsburgh actually is that you will find it very difficult to hail a cab. Don’t depend on public transportation.

4. East of the city, House of 1000 Beers. South of the city, Barley and Hops. North of the city, 1 for the Road. The Robinson Giant Eagle also has a pretty large selection and the best prices IMO.

beers 4296 º places 330 º 17:18 Thu 7/19/2012

1. be sure to check the places section, too

2. unless you’re really into birds, put the aviary low on your list (my opinion is that it’s overpriced for the casual visitor); the zoo/aquarium is a much nicer venue if you want to see animals
- if you can get tix, taking in a Pirates game is an enjoyable evening
-Phipps Conservatory (if you’re into gardens, etc.)
-take a DUCK tour of the city

places 256 º 20:06 Thu 7/19/2012

I really appreciate the advice, and I’ll definitely pursue these suggestions, but I’m pretty concerned about the "no cabs" element. So much so that I possibly wouldn’t have booked the trip had I known. We were planning on using cabs since we’re staying downtown and I was told that the South Side has the best concentration of bars. How do people get around? Is it safe (and close) to walk from the East Carson area to Bigelow Square at night? Or do people just drive drunk? Help me out!

beers 6611 º places 149 º 21:00 Thu 7/19/2012

I’m assuming you are staying at the doubletree if you said bigelow square. If that;s the case, you can take the T (our tiny subway) to the southside in the evening, and take a cab back at night. Because ther are so many bars there, the southside is the one place in pittsburgh where you can easily get a cab. I work downtown right across from the double tree, so let me know if you want to grab a few beers while your in town. Cheers!

beers 4296 º places 330 º 22:22 Thu 7/19/2012

I’ve never had a problem with a cab when needed ... it’s just that you’ll have to call a cab, rather than standing on the street waiting to hail one. Whenever my wife and I overnight in town, we have no problem getting a yellow cab at the hotel. When we’re ready to head back, however, I call Classy Cab (they’re a little more expensive, but more reliable and timely in their pick-up).

places 256 º 08:01 Fri 7/20/2012

Beerman: I’d love to grab some pints. Check your inbox shortly.

Nate: Subway or Yellow Cab there and Classy Cab back sounds like a plan. Thanks for the attractions rundown. The Pirates are away when we’re in town but the Duck tour and Conservatory look great!

Stone Age: very helpful stuff. We’ll probably hit 1 For the Road on the way back home. Fat Head’s, Church Brew, and at least one of the Sharp Edge locations are in our radar. Cheers!

beers 4296 º places 330 º 11:50 Fri 7/20/2012

Not sure which way you’re driving, but if you’re heading up Interstate 79 towards Erie, Slippery Rock is not too far away from the highway (~10 mi) and North Country Brewing Co. is a great place for a meal with some solid brews.

places 256 º 12:29 Fri 7/20/2012

Originally posted by Nate
Not sure which way you’re driving, but if you’re heading up Interstate 79 towards Erie, Slippery Rock is not too far away from the highway (~10 mi) and North Country Brewing Co. is a great place for a meal with some solid brews.

Yeah we might do lunch at Slippery and a bottle shop at 1 For the Road coming back on Sunday (assuming both are open).

Okay, now my next question: outside of some Troegs beers, I have almost no experience with Pennsylvania micros. I see Yards and East End get mentioned quite a bit but I’ve never had any of their brews. So, which PA beers and breweries should I watch out for at the bars and stores?

beers 6611 º places 149 º 13:05 Fri 7/20/2012

Helltown and Fat Heads are probably the best Pittsburgh stuff. You mentioned East End and Church. There’s also Draai Laag which is a decent new small brewery here, and Penn brewery for german stuff. We have all the Victory stuff here. Voodoo makes some nice stuff specifically the Big Black Voodoo Daddy. Stoudts has some nice offerings as well as Sly Fox. If you are looking for stuff that you can’t get in most of the North East and not just Canada, I highly recommend making the trip to house of 1000 beers. Probably a half hour drive from the city but well worth it for stuff that’s not usually available around here. Right now they have stuff from 3 Floyds, Russian River, Deschutes, The Bruery, Lost Abbey, Alesmith, Surly, Hair of the Dog, and some nice Belgian stuff on top of all of the other great stuff that other places have around here.