Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

The Possibilities of an Excellent Breakfast

There are lots of local places for eggs, bacon and wonderful surprises.



Columbia Ave., Vandergrift, home of G&G Restaurant.

I eat breakfast most mornings in my car. I’m a semi-distracted driver with a bagel or some toast in my hand, coffee in a paper cup between the front seats.

Since this past November, however, I’ve been working on a new TV program that celebrates good places to go for a morning meal, and I’ve been to some wonderful eateries nearby and across the country. (My show “Breakfast Special” premieres July 14 at 8 p.m. on most PBS stations.)The Mixed Grill at  Gab-N-Eat.

And while we shot at a couple of local eateries—Hot Metal Diner in West Mifflin and Square Café in Regent Square—I’m still exploring, and that’s one of the joys of my job: I don’t have to stop doing research. Ever.

Early on in the production process, I met video editor Matt Conrad one morning at the Gab-N-Eat in Carnegie. This much-loved little restaurant has a perfect name, an obscure location (we both drove by before finding it on Washington Avenue) and a totally comfortable and homey atmosphere. We sat at the counter—always the best seats. I got the legendary Mixed Grill there, and it was tremendous: a jumble of potatoes and meat and eggs, topped with Italian toast. We gabbed and ate. Actually, I appreciated that the waitress had no problem getting me a small side order of corned beef hash, too. It was unnecessary but excellent, and I will find a way to get back for more soon.

Then one Saturday, while editing “Breakfast Special,” I drove through Bloomfield and saw the bright plastic signs in the windows at Rocky’s at the corner of Liberty and Edmond, and I had to stop in for bacon and eggs. Not bad. It’s a small neighborhood spot where breakfast is no-nonsense and fast, cooked right in front of you. A valuable place.

The Gyros Omelet at  G&G Restaurant.When I had a bit more time, on a Sunday when our editing system was down, I drove to Vandergrift for breakfast at the G&G Restaurant. I had eaten lunch there in March 2009 after I slipped and fell into the Kiskiminetas River, and back then, I had the amazing Vanderburger, but the owner, Mike Kakias, told me I really should stop back for breakfast because that is what they are known for. Then a friend in Vandergrift recently reminded me of the place and said the Gyros Omelet was truly tasty. Yes, it was giant and meaty, scrumptious and tomato-y, with that sour-creamy cucumber tzatziki sauce that comes on gyros. Mike took my order and suggested feta on top. I took my time, attacking this mega-breakfast with Italian toast and countless cups of coffee. Worth the drive.

These three places remind me that there are no rules about breakfast and prove that all the wonderful breakfast spots are not on TV. They’re all around us. You just have to look around, keep your eyes open and figure out where you might go tomorrow. Be sure to order something you’ve never tried before.


  • GAB-N-EAT, 1073 Washington Ave., Carnegie.
  • Info: 412/276-8808.
  • ROCKY’S, 4759 Liberty Ave., Bloomfield.
  • Info: 412/682-4538.
  • G&G RESTAURANT, 149 Columbia Ave., Vandergrift.
  • Info: 724/682-4538.

Rick Sebak produces, writes, narrates and eats his way through TV programs for WQED and PBS. Don’t forget to tune in for “Breakfast Special” on July 14 at 8 p.m.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow TagsEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

Peters Township Native Wins Silver Medal in Speed Skating

After swine flu kept him from competing in Sochi in 2014, short track speed skater John-Henry Krueger finally won a spot on the podium at the Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang.

Perspectives: A Better Life

A former Pittsburgh television reporter recounts the lessons taught to him by his grandfather who spent more than four decades as a Pullman Porter.

Pittsburgh MultiStories: Phipps Legacy – The Fulton Building

With its distinctive seven-story archway, the Fulton Building (now the Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel) remains a beloved Pittsburgh landmark.

Kick Back and Relax with a Baby Sloth

For $150 you can book an up-close hang out session with Vivien the two-toed sloth.

Jack Kerouac: Manager of the Pittsburgh Plymouths

In a league of his own making, the famous writer cast himself as the skipper of a (fantasy) Pittsburgh ball club.

Bucking the Trend: Gallagher’s Groovy Growing

Megan Gallagher is part of a small cadre of young farmers bucking demographic trends.

Meet the Woman bringing Dignity and Diversity to Twitter

As Twitter's vice president of intersectionality, culture and diversity, Candi Castleberry Singleton, who splits her time between Pittsburgh and San Francisco, works tirelessly to bring inclusion and respect to companies.

Where's the Flu Bug Biting Hardest? There's an App for That

The Doctors Report Illness Tracker has the scoop on germ hotspots all over the region and beyond.

Black Panther is Marvel's Best Film

Reviews of "Black Panther" and "Early Man," plus local movie news and notes.

First Look: Poulet Bleu in Lawrenceville

PM dining critic Hal B. Klein takes a look at the new Richard DeShantz restaurant ... and he has the scoop on what's next from the energetic restaurateur.

Meet Pittsburgh's James Beard Award Semifinalists

Pittsburgh has eight nominations in six categories.

Urban Beekeeping Creating Environmental Buzz in Pittsburgh

No backyard? No problem. The country’s first community apiary brings beekeeping to the city.

Dig In: The Next Wave of Pizza in Pittsburgh

Now is the time to be eating pizza in Pittsburgh. Pizza makers are crafting pies in a variety of styles from New York to Old World. We round up our nine favorite destinations.

Can Anthony Hamlet Fix Pittsburgh Public Schools?

The superintendent, and former NFL player, is using a new school of thought to change legacy problems.

5 Pittsburgh Craft Distilleries Earning a Place on the Shelf

Uncovering the hidden gems of western Pennsylvania’s craft spirit world.
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags


Peters Township Native Wins Silver Medal in Speed Skating

Peters Township Native Wins Silver Medal in Speed Skating

After swine flu kept him from competing in Sochi in 2014, short track speed skater John-Henry Krueger finally won a spot on the podium at the Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang.

Comments

Where's the Flu Bug Biting Hardest? There's an App for That

Where's the Flu Bug Biting Hardest? There's an App for That

The Doctors Report Illness Tracker has the scoop on germ hotspots all over the region and beyond.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
First Look: Poulet Bleu in Lawrenceville

First Look: Poulet Bleu in Lawrenceville

PM dining critic Hal B. Klein takes a look at the new Richard DeShantz restaurant ... and he has the scoop on what's next from the energetic restaurateur.

Comments

Avenue B is Closing

Avenue B is Closing

The Shadyside restaurant ends its 8-plus year run in a few weeks.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
Sweet Ideas: Our Favorites for Valentine's Day

Sweet Ideas: Our Favorites for Valentine's Day

Where to eat, where to go, what to buy –– some of our favorites to make your Valentine's celebration memorable.

Comments

5 Best Ways to Go Beyond Regular Recycling

5 Best Ways to Go Beyond Regular Recycling

Recycling your cans is great. Recycling your couch is better.

Comments


After Dark Hall of Fame: Stage AE

After Dark Hall of Fame: Stage AE

The North Shore concert hotspot is the latest inductee in the After Dark Hall of Fame.

Comments

Five Essential February Events in Pittsburgh

Five Essential February Events in Pittsburgh

Pajama cinema, laser-aided indie rock, Pittsburgh punks and more February activities.

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
The Quest is No Less Recognizable Even if Team USA Is Not

The Quest is No Less Recognizable Even if Team USA Is Not

They’re still playing hockey at the Winter Olympics, but without NHL players. Which means the guys doing the playing are relative nobodies. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Comments

Steelers Headed in Wrong Direction on The Stairway to Seven

Steelers Headed in Wrong Direction on The Stairway to Seven

A year ago at this juncture, the Steelers could legitimately perceive the Patriots as the only team standing between them and yet another championship. Now, a lot more more than just one team is in the way.

Comments


The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
Black Panther is Marvel's Best Film

Black Panther is Marvel's Best Film

Reviews of "Black Panther" and "Early Man," plus local movie news and notes.

Comments

At Last, We're Freed from Fifty Shades

At Last, We're Freed from Fifty Shades

Reviews of "Fifty Shades Freed" and "The Cloverfield Paradox," plus local movie news and notes.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
Cookie Table Contest: And the Winner Is ...

Cookie Table Contest: And the Winner Is ...

We introduce the winner and the runners up for our biannual cookie table contest.

Comments

This Pittsburgh Couple Got Lucky in Love

This Pittsburgh Couple Got Lucky in Love

Lea Guarino and Richard Blatz channeled their casino meeting into their wedding theme.

Comments


Weekly inspiration for your home from the editors of Pittsburgh Magazine
Great Mews: 68 Townhouses Underway for Lawrenceville

Great Mews: 68 Townhouses Underway for Lawrenceville

Located on the site of former Hanlon-Gregory Steel galvanizing plant, Mews on Butler should have its first townhomes ready for occupancy by fall.

Comments

Purple Reign: Decorating with Ultra Violet

Purple Reign: Decorating with Ultra Violet

Local interior designers detail how to incorporate Pantone's 2018 Color of the Year into your home.

Comments