Brunch at Spoon

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Mom’s tasty birthday cake (yes, I tried a bite) from her birthday brunch at Spoon!

*NOTE*: Neither Brian Pekarcik, Jamilka Borges nor Spoon Pittsburgh asked me to write this post. I am just a friendly Pittsburgh foodie and Yogini, who enjoys sharing her foodie and yoga adventures with others. Photos taken on an iPhone 7s, and were edited with Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended and Instagram.

Back in April, I treated my Mom to her 65th birthday brunch at Spoon (located in East Liberty)! I also encourage you to read my first post on dinner at Spoon here. Here’s what I had for brunch:

 

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Main CourseSmoked Salmon with watercress & grilled romaine. Also: fingerling potatoes, dill vinaigrette, beets and quail eggs! Absolutely FABULOUS! Great job, Jamilka! 😀

 

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Side Dish: THE best bacon I’ve EVER had (from Heritage Farm)!

 

Well there you have it, folks! I have added Spoon to my favorite brunch spots list; I will definitely return for brunch soon! Whether you either live in Pittsburgh or are planning a visit soon, I highly suggest visiting Spoon in East Liberty for brunch!

 

Next post: brunch at Onion Maiden

 

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

 

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Sunday Funday at Yellow Bridge Brewing Company

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Potato Pancake Fritters and Red Cabbage slaw from Swing Truck at Yellow Bridge Brewing Company. This was REALLY good!

*NOTE*: Neither Yellow Bridge Brewing Company, Steel City Chimney Cakes, nor Swing Truck asked me to write this post. I am just a friendly Pittsburgh foodie and yoga enthusiast, who enjoys sharing her food and yoga adventures with others. Photos captured on my iPhone 6s, and edited with Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended and Instagram.

Please also note that the Swing Truck food truck is no longer in operation, but I still wanted to speak about the delicious food that foodie colleague Bobby Fry made!

Yellow Bridge Brewing Company is located in Delmont, Pennsylvania (just 30 minutes east of the city of Pittsburgh). The Brewery’s staff is very friendly, and of course the beer is very tasty! I hope they are still offering Bloody Mary’s on Sunday, because the Bloody Mary I had on this particular Sunday was FANTASTIC!

I also really appreciate that Yellow Bridge Brewing Company is an advocate for food trucks! This particular Sunday, there was a food truck round up with Swing Truck and the Steel City Chimney Cakes! If you’re wondering what a Chimney Cake is, this is a sweat yeast dough treat, often rolled in sugar. Trust me when I say you will want one (or two)!

 

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Swing Truck Food Truck!

 

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Steel City Chimney’s sign!

 

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Brunch Dish #1: The Steel City Chimney’s and Swing Truck collaborated on this dish: Fried Chicken strips inside of a Steel City Chimney Cake! I must say, this was some of THE best fried chicken I’ve EVER had (good job, Bobby!). This was paired perfectly with the lightly fried dough with cinnamon sugar!

 

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The Food Tasters’ Brunch Dish #1: My friend Tasha (of The Food Tasters and Eat Local/Shop Small) ordered a ham bechamel Steel City Chimney Cake (another collaboration between Swing Truck and Steel City Chimney Cakes)! I must admit I took a bite, and wasn’t disappointed!

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Brunch dish #2: Pork Tacos! Tasha and I shared these; I must say, they ranked right up there with tacos from the PGH Taco Truck and Tako!

 

So there you have it, folks! If you are craft beer fan, I high suggest stopping by Yellow Bridge Brewing Company for a pint! I also encourage you to follow Yellow Bridge Brewing Company on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to stay updated on the latest food truck happenings at Yellow Bridge!

 

Next up on the blog: brunch at Spoon!

 

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

 

Yellow Bridge Brewing Company’s website

Yellow Bridge Brewing Company’s Facebook page

Yellow Bridge Brewing Company Twitter page

Yellow Bridge Brewing Company Instagram page

Steel City Chimney Cakes’ Facebook page

Steel City Chimney Cakes’ Instagram page

 

Brunch at Round Corner Cantina

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Brunch dessert: the truly INCREDIBLE Churros and Ancho-Cocoa Drizzle sauce from Round Corner Cantina! These might’ve just been THE best churros I’ve EVER had!

*NOTE*: Round Corner Cantina didn’t ask me to write this post. I am just a friendly Pittsburgh foodie and yogini, who enjoys sharing her foodie adventures with others! Photos captured with an iPhone 7S; edited with Adobe Photoshop CS$ Extended and Instagram.

One fateful Sunday in February after some #MysoreMagic at The Shala of Pittsburgh Ashtanga Yoga, my Mom and I wandered down Butler Street (in Lawrenceville) to Round Corner Cantina for brunch!

I had been to Round Corner Cantina one time before (for their New Year’s Eve Party in 2015), but I wanted to return to actually dine there (especially for brunch, which I have heard is pretty spectacular at Round Corner Cantina).

 

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Mom’s Brunch: La Gourmandine Brioche French Toast! This came with Benton’s Bacon, Ancho Maple Syrup, Chipotle Whipped Butter, and Berries! I must admit, I tried a bite, and it was one of THE best French Toasts I’ve EVER had! Plus: look how beautiful this dish was plated!

 

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My Brunch: Breakfast Tacos! Refried beans, Rice, Salsa Verde, House Made Corn Tortillas with a sprinkling of Cheese! The refried beans and salsa verde paired beautifully together, and I loved the rice! Plus, the homemade tortillas were some of THE best I’ve ever had! This dish has been added to the list of one of my favorite tacos in Pittsburgh!

 

Whether you either live in Pittsburgh year-round or are just visiting, I highly suggest visiting Round Corner Cantina (especially for brunch)!

 

Next up: dinner at Apteka!

 

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

 

Round Corner Cantina’s website

Round Corner Cantina’s Facebook page

Round Corner Cantina’s Twitter page

Round Corner Cantina’s Instagram page

Yoga + Cocktails (and Brunch) at Bar Marco

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Bar Marco‘s BEAUTIFUL Union Hall event space (located on the top floor of the building that houses Bar Marco)!

*NOTE*: Neither Justin Steel, Kevin Cox, nor Bar Marco asked me to write this post. I am just a Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie and Yogini, who enjoy sharing her foodie and yoga adventures with others. Photos captured with an iPhone 7s, and were edited with Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended and Instagram.

One Fateful Sunday, I was lucky enough to teach a one-hour Power Vinyasa Yoga class in Bar Marco‘s Union Hall space! One-Third of the ticket sales went to Food Revolution Pittsburgh Cooking Club (Bar Marco founded the Pittsburgh chapter! The original chapter was created by celebrity chef Jamie Oliver)! FRPCC works with the students at Obama Academy in East Liberty. The Club teaches them how to grow, harvest, and cook their food. They also bring in local chefs to help teach the students! I also co-hosted (along with Bar Marco) a cocktail-hour after class (where students had the choice between either a Mimosa or a Bloody Mary. The cocktail was included within the class price).

 

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I was so lucky to teach in such a beautiful space! Thank you Andrew, Justin and Kevin for providing me with this opportunity!

 

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Students enjoying Savasana before class ends! Stay tuned for Yoga + Cocktails II, which will be held at Bar Marco’s Union Hall once again! Details (as far as a date and time) TBA!

After yoga class and cocktail hour, I met my Mom and brother for brunch at Bar Marco! Here was the fall brunch menu:

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Mom’s handsome brunch: Brioche French Toast, and fresh-squeezed orange juice! The Brioche French Toast had a pumpkin mousse, pecan and maple syrup. I tried a bit- INCREDIBLE!

 

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My enjoyable brunch: Buckwheat Pancakes! Served with apple butter, granola, bacon, and maple syrup! Sooooooo good!

 

In my opinion, Bar Marco makes one of THE best brunches in the city! Whether you’re either just visiting Pittsburgh or live here, I highly encourage you to attend brunch at Bar Marco! Also: please stay tuned to either my Twitter (@lauraelizabethj) or Instagram account (@friendlypghfoodie) for upcoming yoga classes I am teaching!

 

Next up on the blog: Dinner at Altius!

 

 

 

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

 

Bar Marco’s website

Bar Marco’s Facebook page

Bar Marco’s Twitter page

Bar Marco’s Instagram page

 

 

Brunch at The Whitfield at Ace Hotel Pittsburgh

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The entrance to the Ace Hotel in the East Liberty neighborhood of Pittsburgh! Surprisingly, the sun provided perfectly lighting for me on this warm Sunday in November!

*NOTE*: Neither the Ace Hotel, Ace Hotel Pittsburgh, the Whitfield, nor Tom Totin asked me to write this blog post. I am just a Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie and Yogini, whom enjoys sharing her foodie and yoga adventures with others. Photos were taken on an iPhone 7s, and were edited with Adobe Photoshop CS4 and Instagram.

One fateful Sunday in November, Tom Totin of the Cookspeak Tom podcast invited me to be a guest on his podcast! Before the podcast, we decided to meet for brunch at the Whitfield, which is inside the Ace Hotel of Pittsburgh!

The Whitfield was one of two restaurants from Pittsburgh (the other being Morcilla by Justin Severino and his business partner and wife Hilary Prescott Severino) nominated by Bon Appetit magazine as one of the Best New Restaurants of 2016! The Pastry Chef of the Whitfield was also nominated for a James Beard Award this year! With all of this fuss, I new I had to dine there myself to be my own judge.

 

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The brunch specials! I went with the Rosemary Vanilla Latte, although I had it with almond milk (which was DELICIOUS)!

 

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Here is my GLORIOUS Rosemary Vanilla Latte, which I thoroughly enjoyed during brunch!

 

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(*Sorry for this crappy photo! The one bad thing about a sunny day is that is creates a lot of shadows.*)  Course #1: Pumpkin Bread with a Pepita Crumble and Spiced Chevre. THE best pumpkin bread I’ve EVER had, and the Spiced Chevre was HEAVENLY!

 

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Tom’s Main Course: Whitfield Breakfast! A “riff” on Egg’s Benedict, this breakfast contained: Poached Eggs, a Housemade English Muffin, Smoked Pork, Hollandaise, Chimichurri and Beet & Potato Rosti. Wow! Tom was nice enough to let me try a bit; this was VERY good!

 

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My Main Course: Buttermilk Fried Chicken Salad! A tribute to the “classic” Pittsburgh salad with fries, this salad contained: Mixed Greens, Cucumber, Tomatoes, Red Onion, Fries, Ranch and Aged Provolone. The fried chicken was soooo goood! The fries and the cheese paired perfectly with the fried chicken!

I was very impressed with the food and the ambiance of the Whitfield and the hotel! The Whitfield has quickly joined the list of one of my FAVORITE brunch spots! Whether you’re looking for either a casual Sunday brunch or a reason to celebrate life, I highly suggest dining at the Whitfield! Make sure you make a reservation (since this is a popular spot)!

 

Next on the blog: Yoga + Cocktails (and brunch) at Bar Marco!

 

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

 

Whitfield’s website

Whitfield’s Facebook page

Whitfield’s Twitter page

Whitfield’s Instagram page

Tom Totin’s Twitter page

Brunch at The Vandal

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Mom and I enjoyed this GLORIOUS brunch spread on one fateful Sunday in August (after I experienced some #MysoreMagic at The Shala of Pittsburgh Ashtanga Yoga)! The dish in the middle was a special side dish that is normally only on the breakfast menu: Frangipane with griddled sourdough bread and fruit preserves!

*NOTE*: Neither Joey Hilty, Csilla Thackray, nor The Vandal asked me to write this post.  I am just a friendly Pittsburgh foodie and yogini, whom enjoys sharing her foodie and yoga adventures with others! Photos captured on an iPhone 5s, and were edited with Adobe Photoshop CS4 and Instagram!

One fateful Sunday in August, I actually had “a Sunday off” (meaning I didn’t have to teach yoga). Thus, I decided to treat myself to my first EVER Beginner’s Mysore class at The Shala of Pittsburgh Ashtanga (in Lawrenceville), and brunch at The Vandal (which is conveniently right across the street from The Shala)!

Thanks to articles in Zagat, the New York Times, and even local publications such as NextPittsburgh and the City Paper, The Vandal has certainly become a “foodie” destination in Pittsburgh! Thus, the first time we stopped by for brunch this day, there was a 30-45 minute wait. Not a problem! I had been wanting to visit the Butterwood Bake Consortium for months! Thus, my Mom and I drove down and treated ourselves to dessert first!

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I enjoyed the Vegan Chocolate Pudding with almonds! So good that if I didn’t already know this was Vegan, I wouldn’t have know the difference! I love the vibe at Butterwood- I felt like I was attending a fancy Victorian Tea (which harkens back to the days of when I loved the American Girl dolls! Samantha was my favorite)!

Once Mom and I had finished dessert, 30 minutes had passed and the co-owner Joey (Hilty) had acquired seats for us! While we waited I enjoyed DELICIOUS coffee (The Vandal gets it coffee from Parlor Coffee, based in Brooklyn) out of a quirky coffee mug! Soon afterwards, it was time for BRUNCH!

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Course #1: Csilla’s Granola! Naturi Yogurt, nuts (almonds, pecans and cashews) in honey, and rhubarb (the summer flavor). INCREDIBLE! Just like last time, the Yogurt and Granola dish at The Vandal is my FAVORITE brunch dish! Every bite was enjoyable- from the savoriness of the nuts an rhubarb, to the sweetness of the honey and yogurt. Nice job, Csilla and kitchen crew!

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Mom’s brunch course: Beignets with Blueberry Compote (the summer compote)! These were VERY good! Even though I haven’t been to Cafe Du Monde in New Orleans yet, this is what I would image the Beignets would taste like there!

There you have it, folks!

If you’re looking for locally-sourced, highly quality ingredients, good food, coffee, and conversation (I must admit, Joey does a good job being the host of The Vandal), The Vandal is your weekend brunch spot!

 

Next on the blog: Mom’s first dinner at Bar Marco!

 

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

 

The Butterwood Bake Consortium’s website

The Vandal’s website

The Vandal’s Facebook page

The Vandal’s Twitter page

The Vandal’s Instagram page

Brunch with Foodie Friends at Station

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The GORGEOUS Bloody Mary I enjoyed during brunch with foodie friends at Station!

*NOTE*: Neither Curtis Gamble nor Station asked me to write this post. I am just a Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie and Yogini, who enjoys sharing her Foodie and Yoga adventures with others. Photos captures with an iPhone 5s, and edited with Adobe Photoshop CS4 Extended and Instagram.

The first Sunday of July (3rd), I gathered with a few foodie friends to celebrate a blogger’s birthday, brunch and life. My fearless brunch companions were Tasha of The Food Tasters, YaJagoff! Podcast, the Allegheny Inn and Eat Local Shop Small; Robert of Downtown Pittsburgh Concierge and the Allegheny Inn, and Amanda of Bold Pittsburgh and the Pittsburgh Podcamp. This particular Sunday, we were celebrating Amanda’s birthday! 😀

If you didn’t get a chance to read my review of Station’s Cocktail and Construction event, please do so by clicking here.

What better way to do so than with brunch at Station (Curtis Gamble‘s Modern American restaurant that opened last August in Bloomfield). I had been to Station once for its Cocktails and Construction Preview party last year, and have been DYING to return for brunch (especially after the eatPGH ladies and Heidi of The Steel Trap wrote raving review of Station’s brunch)!

So here we are during the 4th of July holiday weekend! I received a warm welcome from Justin (General Manager at Station)! Such a nice guy; he did a great job with helping to coordinate this blogger meet-up!

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Since I knew I would be having savory food at brunch, I ordered a Bloody Mary! During the month of July, all Bloody Marys and Mimosas were only $5 during Sunday brunch! Don’t mind if I do! 😉

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Hello lover!

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I had to take a picture of the $5 Bloody Marys and Mimosas deal in July! 😉

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The main courses offered during the month of July at Station’s Sunday brunch!

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An extended look at the menu for Sunday Brunch at Station!

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This was one of the dishes that Tasha order that everyone shared: Fried Brioche Pudding! This came with Creme Fraiche, Powdered Sugar, Pomegranate Curd and Honey. INCREDIBLE! One of the best dishes at brunch!

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Truly a sight of beauty!

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Another dish that we all shared: Olive Oil Poached Cobia (which is a type of fish)! Creme Fraiche, Country Seed Bread, Coriander Mustard and Pickles! I love this fresh take on toast at either brunch or breakfast!

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The Birthday Lady’s brunch: Farmer’s Breakfast! BBQ Lentils, Egg, Chicken Sausage, and Canadian Bacon. This looked FABULOUS (and Amanda said it was REALLY good)!

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Tasha’s main course: Crispy Fried Chicken Thigh! Grits, Chicken Jus, and an One hour Egg! Tasha said it was one of THE best chicken dishes she’s EVER had! I tried some of the chicken, and I must say that I agree!

I didn’t get a good picture of Robert‘s main course, but he ordered the Shaved Pork Shoulder on Brioche (fashioned like a burger)! This arrived with an Egg Patty, American Cheese Wiz, and Potato Chips! I tried some of the Potato Chips- best I’ve ever had!  I could tell they were made in-house! Robert said the Shaved Pork should was very tasty (especially on the Brioche bun)!

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My first course at brunch: Housemade Yogurt! This was paired with Sunflower seed granola, and dried plum. This dish is tied with The Vandal for the best yogurt and granola dish I’ve had at ANY restaurant!

I forgot to take a picture of my main course (which is sad because it was beautifully plated): Crispy Tofu! This dish came with Green Curry Coconut, Vegan Scramble, and Petite Greens! I love Vegan dishes that are so good that if you didn’t already know it was Vegan, you would think it’s just a “regular” dish. This was definitely the case, but nothing about this dish was ordinary! Elegantly plated- I loved dipping the perfectly cooked Crispy Tofu in the Green Coconut Curry, and also adding some of the Vegan Scramble to my fork for THE perfect bite! Great job, Curtis and crew!

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One of the dessert dishes all of us shared: Popcorn Panna Cotta! This was plated with Caramel Corn and Salted Caramel! Tasha and I had this dish at Station’s Cocktail and Construction party and absolutely LOVED it (so much so that we had a second one at the party)! Everyone at brunch loved it as well! This is tied with Meat & Potatoes’ Panna Cotta for THE best Panna Cotta in the city!

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Another dessert dish that we all shared: Lavender Pound Cake! This was paired with Coconut Pudding and Pineapple! This dish was truly exceptional! The Pound Cake was nice and moist, and the Lavender was not overpowering (which is great! It should be subtle). Dipping some of the pound cake in the coconut pudding made you feel like you were floating on a marshmallow cloud! So tasty! The pineapple was the perfect fruity punch to this dish!

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I love Station’s logo! Simple yet so effective! Right away, you know by looking at it that this is Contemporary American Restaurant!

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Thanks again to Curtis, Justin, Jesse (our waiter extraordinaire) and staff for a truly WONDERFUL brunch! Top-knotch hospitality, good vibes and incredible food! Plus, I was surrounded by lovely company! How could I ask for more?

Whether you either live in or near Pittsburgh or will be visiting soon, PLEASE make sure you get to Station for either dinner or brunch! Trust me when I say it’s one of THE best restaurants in Pittsburgh!

 

Next post: dinner at The Vandal!

 

-Friendly Pittsburgh Foodie

 

Station’s website

Station’s Facebook page

Station’s Twitter page

Station’s Instagram page