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Saturday, October 27, 2012

Bubba's Gourmet Burgers and Beer

Bubba's Gourmet Burghers and Beer on Urbanspoon
 Gourmet burger places are all the rage around Pittsburgh in the past couple of years, and the locals have really embraced them.  For many years, a lot of us have been making the trek to Bloomfield to enjoy a great burger at Tessaro's.  At one time, they were the only game in town, but not anymore!
One of the newest and best burger places is Bubba's Gourmet Burgers and Beer, just south of the city in Bridgeville.  I stopped in this week with my good friend Gary to check the place out.  The space is open and comfortable with a full bar and plenty of TV's if you want to watch a game.  We were promptly greeted as we entered and made to feel comfortable by our outstanding bartender, who introduced herself as Shea.  It's always nice to feel welcome as soon as you walk in.

The menu is concise, with choices of appetizers, salads and of course burgers.  Neither Gary or I were very adventurous as we both opted for a Classic Burger...with cheese, of course!  The burger was properly cooked to a perfect medium rare and the flavor was tremendous.  I later learned that Bubba (yes, the Bubba from local morning radio fame) grinds the meat fresh every day, using a mix of brisket, prime rib, short rib, and certified Angus beef.  All of the beef is grass fed, and steroid and antibiotic free.  The burgers were served with fries, but with a twist. They use a combination of standard potatoes and sweet potato fries, which I really enjoyed.

Pittsburgh has a number of quality burger places now but I think Bubba's is as good as just about any of them, and will be sure to return soon.  Next time I'll be sure to try a different burger...I have my eye on the N'awlins Burger, with Cajun seasoning and chipolte mayo, bacon, blue cheese, lettuce tomato and onion...Wow!

Bubba's is located at 3109 Washington Pike, about a minute off the Bridgeville exit of Interstate 79, in Bridgeville Pa.  Stop in and say hello to Shea, (who recently relocated from the west coast) and make sure to make her feel welcome to her new hometown!

Monday, October 22, 2012

The winter factory All Clad sale will be held on November 30th and December 1st. at the Washington County fair grounds.  For those of you that have never been, they sell All Clad cookware at significantly discounted prices.  Even at the sale, this stuff is pricy, but it's a way to put together a set at a somewhat more reasonable price.  Both first quality and seconds are offered.  Over the years I've purchased many of the seconds and have gotten more than ten years of steady service of several of them.  Even now, I don't think I could find the defect on these pans!

The fair grounds are just off of Interstate 79, about 40 minutes south of Pittsburgh.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

PO Lunch

I've seen Lawrence County, Pa referred to as the Hot Dog Capital of the World.  That's quite a claim.  Over the years there have been numerous discussions on foodie sites such as Chowhound debating the virtues of various hot dog shops in the New Castle, Lawrence county area.  Usually the talk centers not so much on the dogs themselves, but the chili sauce that they top them all with.

I was in New Castle last week and happened upon P.O. Lunch.  The P.O. stands for Post Office...Why, I don't know.  Anyway, P.O. Lunch is one of the names that I remembered being a favorite of the locals so I had to stop in for lunch.

The place is diner like, very bright and very clean.  The menu offers typical diner fare, and while I was temped to try a burger, I had to go with what made them famous, the hot dogs.  I order two dogs with everything.  In New Castle lingo that means mustard, onions and chili.  The following explanation of New Castle hot dog lingo (from the Lawrence County website) is described as:

New Castle Hot Dog Terms
Everything = Mustard, Onions,and Chili
Ketchup Everything = Ketchup, Onions, and Chili
Ketchup with Everything = Ketchup, Mustard, Onions, and Chili

I was told that they would put ketchup on my dogs, but that is frowned upon.  I was obedient.  The dogs were great and the chili really made them.  On top of that a couple of loaded dogs, and order of fries and a soft drink came out to less than six bucks.  Can't go wrong with that!

P.O. Lunch is located at 2402 Wilmington Road, New Castle, Pa.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Log Cabin Inn

When I'm north of the city there are a couple of places that I really enjoy.  My favorite, the Iron Bridge Inn in Mercer is a close relative to The Log Cabin Inn.  Both restaurants are owned by the same restaurant group.  The Springfield Group operates a handful of pretty good restaurants in out of the way places.  While they don't qualify as a mom and pop operation, these places are not like chain restaurants in location, food or atmosphere.

The restaurant is built around an actual 160 year old log cabin.  The original cabin serves as a dining room and a room in the back overlooks a beautiful wooded valley.

The menu is simple, but very nice with a variety of appetizers and salads, steaks and at least a half dozen seafood selections.    Being lunch time, Stacy and I choose to order sandwiches.  She went for the classic Ruben and I decided on Sonny's Favorite which is smoked turkey, ham, Swiss, coleslaw and Thousand Island dressing on marble rye.  This sandwich was a monster!  The meat and fillings were piled about 3 inches high on a great tasting rye bread, and served with a side...I choose boring coleslaw.  This sandwich wasn't only quantity, the meat was lean, tasty and just a very good quality product.  Stacy was just as pleased with her Ruben.

Both of us decided that we need to get back here and try dinner sometime when our schedules allow.

The Log Cabin Inn is located on route 19, at 430 Perry Highway in Harmony,  just a few minutes north of Zelienople, Pa.