Yinz goin ta Pittsburgh? Well, that’s your call, and I won’t judge you for it. Actually, I’m going too, so I thought I’d assemble a quick primer on the Steel City. I consulted my buddy Kenny, who matriculated at University of Pittsburgh, and my former ladyfriend eBagel, who attended pretty much every other school in the city. They advised me on the history of the city, some sights and sounds, and where to get properly sauced up before the game. Readers, please print this article out and stuff it in your fanny pack while travelling the Pitt-y wilds. It’s an untamed land full of hooligans and ne’er-do-wells, cutpurses and castrati, Pensbloggers and Super Swamper Boggers, and– of course– the ever-swelling army of Max Talbot’s illegitimate children. Let’s jump on in.
Pittsburgh Fast Facts!
- Pittsburgh was first settled in 1983 by the occupants of a Bon Jovi roadie van that blew a tire on the turnpike.
- Pittsburgh’s main export is gristle.
- Since the collapse of the big steel, Pittsburgh has been supported by the atherosclerotic plaque industry.
- Beer can be purchased only from distributors. Liquor and wine are sold elsewhere.
- If you request transportation to Heinz Field, the correct phrasing would be: “can you ride me to Heinz?” Transitive verbs hold no meaning within city limits.
- The Incline
Built in the 1870’s, these cable cars will give you a lovely aerial view of urban decay. Keep an eye out for the tire fires illuminating the cityscape.
- The South Side
Dense with bars and college students, the south side also hosts the Beehive, a hipster-friendly coffee place where the only thing blacker than the coffee is the horn rims on your oversize, prescription-less reading glasses.
- Strip District Market
Despite its name, this is just a cool historic area with shopping opportunities.
- The Warhol Museum
How exactly did Andy “produce” the Nico album? Whatever. Can’t miss the museum if you’re into po-mo.
- Bellisario’s Pizza Palace
Die-hard Steelers fans, but they’ve got tasty pizza pies. I frequent the one in Frederick.
- Primanti Bros.
Famous sandwiches served with coleslaw and fries in ’em.
- Fat Heads
Nestled on Carson Street in the South Side, get your wings here.
- Steak n Shake
Fast food: cheap and delicious. The fries are incendiary! Incccccendiary!
Japers’ Rink and Caps News Network are hosting an NYE party at this German beer hall. I’ll be there, tugging on J.P.’s coattails, lest I break a few more ribs in the meantime.
- Church Brew Works
It’s a microbrewery inside of an old church, for those who prefer their alcohol served in the same place as their AA meetings.
It’s not looking good, friends.
Pack your poncho. I’ll be sporting the trash bag with eye-holes cut out.
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Alright, this is obviously a desperately incomplete list. Do you have any recommendations to share? Got any plans for a meet-up or a tailgate party? Do you know the map point to a slamming warehouse party? Please put ’em in the comments. We’ll all be in enemy territory, so solidarity is necessary to our shared survival.
If you’re in Pittsburgh and would like to buy me a beer or three, hit me up via the Twitters: @peterhassett.
And remember, if stuff goes bad, Caps-friendly Hershey is only 200 miles away.