Sidewalk Bites

Looking for a quick meal on the run? These outdoor food vendors might change your perception of “fast food.”

  • Joe’s Dog House (Locations in Shadyside and on Carnegie Mellon University’s campus): It’s not much of a house—more like a traditional cart, shaded by umbrellas—but Joe’s little nooks on CMU’s campus and in Shadyside are community institutions. Half the joy is eating a grease-dripping kielbasa on a bun, covered in onions and ’kraut, for a measly $3.75, or the equally tasty vegetarian version made from soy protein. The other half? Satisfying that afternoon (or very late night) hunger pang with no cleanup (or fork) required.
     
  • Sree’s Foods (Oakland): Sreevardhan Mekala is a smiley, mustached man with a good head for health and business, and there’s nary a downtown office worker who hasn’t visited his super-efficient restaurant at Seventh Avenue and Smithfield Street (there’s another location in Squirrel Hill on Murray Avenue, too). Meanwhile, over in Oakland, Carnegie Mellon University students can enjoy his “food truck,” a little mobile kitchen parked in front of the dorms serving tamarind curry chicken, tomato dal and spinach tofu. Sree’s is the best-known stop, but visitors can also sample from the row of other food trucks, all of which offer eclectic lunchtime bites.

     

  • Vendors of the Strip (Strip District): The Strip District is chock full of food vendors touting portable, delicious foods. Dozens of businesses set up stands to sell kabobs, egg rolls, ice cream, fried ravioli, pizza slices and lo mein. Don’t miss Sam Bok Oriental Foods (1745 Penn Ave., 412/261-9377), where an outdoor lunch table serves up fried rice, Korean barbecue and “banh mi,” or in Pittsburgh-speak, “hoagies.” While you’re in the neighborhood, visit the lemonade stand a couple of blocks down, where just-squeezed lemon juice, sugar and crushed ice are shaken to frothy perfection.
     
  • Vendors of Schenley Plaza (Oakland): It wasn’t long ago that Schenley Plaza was a parking lot. Now there are grass lawns, benches, a carousel and several places to eat. Two favorites: The Bagel Factory, for a quick shmear, and Asia Tea House, which serves everything from sushi to bourbon chicken. For breakfast or bubble tea, Schenley Plaza has become a favorite outdoor lunch spot.
Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Best Doctors in Pittsburgh

Best Doctors in Pittsburgh

Our exclusive list of the region's 584 leading physicians across 76 specialities.
Endless Challenges: 48 Remarkable Hours with 8 Pittsburgh Doctors

Endless Challenges: 48 Remarkable Hours with 8 Pittsburgh Doctors

Follow eight physicians over two days as they perform surgeries, consult on end-of-life care, treat accident victims, discuss hospital programs –– and then reset and do it all over again.
The Commoner — Too Much of a Good Thing?

The Commoner — Too Much of a Good Thing?

Chef Dennis Marron designs a menu of modern-American fare at The Commoner in the downstairs space of Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco Pittsburgh.
What Inspires Ray Gastil's Careful Plan for Pittsburgh's Future

What Inspires Ray Gastil's Careful Plan for Pittsburgh's Future

How will the city’s new planning director stoke Pittsburgh’s next generation of developments?
Edit ModuleShow Tags

The 412

Two Pittsburgh Restaurants Closing; Kings Leaving the Family

Two Pittsburgh Restaurants Closing; Kings Leaving the Family

One of the eateries has been a staple in Bloomfield for more than a half-century.
Who's Carson? Why Does He Have His Own Street?

Who's Carson? Why Does He Have His Own Street?

Some of the names synonymous with Pittsburgh have surprising histories behind them.
Aviary Determined to Have Dwindling Condors Leave the Nest

Aviary Determined to Have Dwindling Condors Leave the Nest

The National aAviary is working to send ’Burgh-born birds back to their natural habitats to boost endangered populations.
Are You Missing Out? Why More People Love Life in Butler County

Are You Missing Out? Why More People Love Life in Butler County

Cranberry Township is crammed, but people still are flocking north.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Best Doctors in Pittsburgh

Best Doctors in Pittsburgh

Our exclusive list of the region's 584 leading physicians across 76 specialities.
Endless Challenges: 48 Remarkable Hours with 8 Pittsburgh Doctors

Endless Challenges: 48 Remarkable Hours with 8 Pittsburgh Doctors

Follow eight physicians over two days as they perform surgeries, consult on end-of-life care, treat accident victims, discuss hospital programs –– and then reset and do it all over again.
The Commoner — Too Much of a Good Thing?

The Commoner — Too Much of a Good Thing?

Chef Dennis Marron designs a menu of modern-American fare at The Commoner in the downstairs space of Kimpton’s Hotel Monaco Pittsburgh.
What Inspires Ray Gastil's Careful Plan for Pittsburgh's Future

What Inspires Ray Gastil's Careful Plan for Pittsburgh's Future

How will the city’s new planning director stoke Pittsburgh’s next generation of developments?
Dare to be Different — PittGirl's Better Ways to Use Social Media

Dare to be Different — PittGirl's Better Ways to Use Social Media

You can use social media to change your life and the lives of those around you in a positive way.
Pittsburgh's Top 10 in April

Pittsburgh's Top 10 in April

The 10 best things to do in April in Pittsburgh.
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module