Friday, July 2, 2010
Meet Yinz in Da Burgh: Pittsburgh
“Most people think when they come to Pittsburgh that they’re going to see soot, smoke and steel mills. They don’t know how beautiful the city has become with the Pittsburgh Renaissance.” The Pittsburgh Renaissance began in the 1970s when the steel mills closed and the city began redeveloping tracts of industrial land. BK noted that “the days when men had to change their shirts at noon because of the soot are long gone.”
Phipps Conservatory, a must-see attraction for plant lovers and gardeners. This amazing botanical garden dazzles with its designated “rooms,” each devoted to some particular botanical treat: a butterfly forest, a palm court, an orchid room, a tropical fruit and spice room and an Amazon rainforest room.
I was delighted to find Kaya, where I ate one of the best Caribbean meals I’ve had in North America. Located in the hip Strip District, where old industrial warehouses have been converted into restaurants, nightclubs and the site of several outdoor markets, Kaya’s island cuisine takes its inspiration from the Caribbean, the Hawaiian Islands, the South Pacific and South America. From Jerk Wings, to Tuna Poke, Kaya is island fusion at its best!
And then there’s the unique “Pittsburghese.” I’m used to people telling me that I “talk funny.” So I was glad to find a city where they revel in their own completely distinct dialect and pronunciations! Dahntahn (Downtown), Da-Boat-a-ya (the both of you), Da Burgh (Pittsburgh), Yinz (you all/ people from Pittsburgh), Meet yinz at cordada four (meet you at quarter to 4), sammitch (sandwich), Ahia (Ohio), City Chicken (veal and pork cubes breaded and fried), Kennywood's Open (Your fly is unzipped).
I’ll be in Pittsburgh for the next three weeks, taking advantage of the great medical care at UPMC. Blog postings will resume asap. See you Yinzers soon :-).