I'll be the first to admit it, I would never ever have dreamt about visiting Pittsburgh. From what I've seen on TV and read about the Steel City, it never occurred to me that it would be some place that I would ever check out. Just the name of it, Steel City, gives off the vibe that everything is just gray and drab. The weather just seems cold and rainy, plus it's the home of the Pittsburgh Penguins and being an adopted Nashville Predators fan just felt like I would be betraying my allegiance to the team - ok, that seems a little dramatic, but it didn't help paint that perfect picture of Pittsburgh.
I'll also be the first to admit that I was wrong. The city has some pretty cool things to offer. I traveled to Pittsburgh last week for work and one of the things that quickly impressed me was downtown. One of the roads from the airport to downtown's through Fort Pitt Tunnel and once you emerge from it, you end up on a bridge over the river looking into downtown. Maybe it's because I'm a country girl at heart, but downtown Pittsburgh took me by surprise. Another impressive trait was the hotel, Kimpton Hotel Monaco that we stayed at. The hotel's adorned with whimsical decor that all meshes together because of its curious-like content.
The food scene is booming in Pittsburgh - strange, I know to think of the Steel City as a foodie town. There's a restaurant, The Commoner, that's connected to the Kimpton Hotel Monaco that we dined at twice. My favorites were the eclectic range of cocktails inspired by the bar staff and the sticky toffee pudding. The pudding is a must! It made my dessert list as one of my top three favorites of all time.
I also had the chance to dine at a couple restaurants around downtown - all an easy walking distance from the hotel. Primanti Bros. is a must and know for its famous sandwiches made with fries - yes, fries are on the sandwich so be sure to go there hungry. Also täkō, is unique to Pittsburgh, and blew me away with its tacos and street corn.
Next up, my favorite of possibly all time, The Milkshake Factory. Talk about a kid in a candy store - or, er, the milkshake store. There's plenty of different milkshakes of all shapes and flavors that are offered at the quaint stop, as well as chocolates of all flavors and candied apples.
Honestly, I would go back to Pittsburgh if I got the chance. There are a few things that I didn't get time to do, like the Duquesne Incline up to Mount Washington, plus there are so many restaurants that I didn't get to try that were recommended. Though, for now, I'll just have sweet dreams of sticky toffee pudding and hand spun milkshakes.
(Disclaimer: everything I tried is not pictured due to early consumption. I also forgot to take photos!)