Neighborhood Food

Earlier this year, my employer moved our offices from a building in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood of Pittsburgh to an area close to the CMU campus in Oakland. Being at CMU has a lot of advantages. It’s an easier commute, and I’m closer to various people who I know at CMU. These things are good.

I miss Squirrel Hill though. I miss the lunches. It’s not like the food in Squirrel Hill is particularly superb. But there are several places that are almost without peer in Pittsburgh, and many of these places are also relatively cheap. Consider that within a reasonable walk of our old offices we had

- Rose Tea - Zaw’s (the KING of cheap eats in town) - Napoli Pizza - Mineos (not my favorite) - Milky Way - Pinati - Uncle Sam’s - Squirrel Cage - Ka Mei - Taqueria Mi Mexico (sadly closed)

And several others I’m forgetting. In the new location, it’s hard to get up the motivation to walk all the way to the heart of Oakland, so you find yourself picking from

- Newell Simon Hall (a fate worse than death) - Orient Express (not bad, nowhere near as good as Zaw’s or Rose Tea) - A few places on Craig Street, all expensive. - The Indian Store. This is the only really cheap lunch, and it’s not that good.

If you make it to Oakland, there are few great landmarks

- Primanti’s - The O - Sam’s

And a few new places that are good

- Oishii Bento - The Falafel Guy - Five Guys

But the hike to this area is too far for a daily trip, and the range of available choices is still not as wide as our old neighborhood. It makes one sad.

I find myself craving food I was tired of when we worked on Murray Ave. I guess we’ll just have to organize massive takeout runs for the whole office. You can only go so long without Zaw’s for lunch.