Monday, June 15, 2009

Nashville Hearts Pittsburgh

Update: Read about another Pittsburgh surprise at GlobalPittsburgh.

The popular perception is one of a culinary backwater. But any well-traveled foodie knows better. The Pittsburgh you experience depends on your tastes. Regarding cosmopolitan excellence, Pittsburgh isn't on the map.
But if you like culturally distinct flavors and hidden gems, Southwestern PA is a treasure trove:

I just get giddy when I think of spending a weekend in the 'Burgh, what am I going to taste and eat when I get there? What chef owned delights am I going to go manic over? Here is a chronicle of my last trip to the foodie heaven - Pittsburgh.

Foodie heaven? Pittsburgh? I'm reminded of the White House press conference announcing the site of the upcoming G-20 summit.

Pittsburgh, along with St. Louis and Cincinnati, is an archipelago:

The Midland would not hold much interest to a person searching out accents were it not for three enclaves that have retained unique speech: St. Louis, Cincinnati and, in particular, Pittsburgh, which seems to be the Galapagos Islands of American dialect.

Thus, the geography of traditions such as the cookie table are small and localized. There's a Pittsburgh-ness you can't find anywhere else. For the food critic who is more anthropologist than snob, Pittsburgh is heaven. (I hope you didn't snarf your coffee and damage your computer)

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