Where We're Eating in June
We're stocking up on Healcrest Urban Farm's minty nectarine teapops and brunching on chicken and waffles at Carmi Restaurant.
Healcrest Urban Farm
Fruit, herbs and ice combine to create summertime refreshments in teapops from Healcrest Urban Farm. While the East End homestead’s crew crafts pops year-round using locally grown and sourced goods, current seasonal selections include two favorites: minty nectarine and strawberry knotweed. Healcrest stocks pops at select markets and shops, such as Biddle’s Escape in Regent Square.
healcresturbanfarm.com; photo by Laura Petrilla
The key to good gelato is using quality dairy to produce creamy results; it’s available here by the scoop or in a cake to top off any celebration. The family-owned spot near Washington, Pa., hasn’t toyed with its spaghetti and tomato sauce recipe for 75 years. Regulars rave about sandwiches, such as the bleu roast beef, and chicken entrées.
2109 N. Franklin Drive, North Franklin Township; 724/222-7120, angelosrestaurant.com
Funnel cakes often are associated with fun times — carnivals, fairs and the like. Zachary Winghart, who enjoys coming up with offbeat concepts, serves his own version at his namesake burger joints. Order your “hippy cake” plain with powdered sugar or with baconflavored cheese to offset the sweetness. The latter choice is the optimum companion for a pint, especially during a big game.
Five area locations; winghartsburgers.com; photo by Laura Petrilla
Rather than dense gluten-free buns, Gus’s offers a gluten-free waffle to sandwich your beef burger. This spot no longer is strictly gluten-free, but those dishes, including the rich mac ‘n’ cheese gnocchi, remain popular. Tachos are perfect for carb lovers — housemade tater tots loaded with cheese and salsa.
4717 Butler St., Lawrenceville; 412/315-7271, gusscafe.com
A plate of buttery, fluffy-as-air waffles with Southern fried chicken is the answer to mealtime doldrums. At breakfast, an order of shrimp and grits gets an upgrade via the addition of cheddar, spiced butter and assorted sautéed vegetables. The staff is genuinely friendly, and meals tend to hover at or below the $15 mark.
917 Western Ave., North Side; 412/231-0100, carmirestaurant.com
Nic DiCio is known for his tortillas, sold at his upstairs grocery and showcased in mini tacos and other favorites at Casa Reyna. Beef tongue, a traditional ingredient in Hispanic cuisine, is featured in several dishes, including one with tomatillo salsa and beans. Get a tequila flight; picks from Mexico’s Lowlands, such as ones produced by the brand 1800, pack spice.
2031 Penn Ave., Strip District; 412/904-1242, reynafoods.com
Naomi Homison, Co-owner | Pittsburgh Juice Co.
Naomi Homison, as many other Pittsburgh natives have done, returned to the city after living elsewhere for several years. She and her brother, Zeb — both avid yogis and juicers — opened a cold-pressed juicery this winter in a former cinema. Beyond selling beverages with a three-day shelf life — including fresh coconut water, carrot-apple-ginger juice and almond milk — the duo vends housemade products featuring the remains of used ingredients; for example, vegan coconut “bacon” is made of dried coconut “meat.”
Best menu option for hungry patrons?
Our power berry smoothie with protein powder, almond milk, [banana] and blueberries.
Tip for novice juicers?
Keep it simple. Concentrate on one solid base for your juice, with a few other ingredients for nutrients and taste.
Misconception about juice?
Just because it’s juice doesn’t mean it’s good for you. You need to look for other factors also; for example, low-sugar, high-alkalizing ingredients . . . Ideally, [juices should contain] simple ingredients with trace elements [such as silica].
3418 Butler St., Lawrenceville; 412/586-5060, pittsburghjuicecompany.com; photo by Laura Petrilla