Vegetarian (Pittsburgh, Penn Hills, Liberty: house, live in, restaurants)
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Not a great help. Several of those are not quite right or closed.
I suspect most of the folks reading are not vegetarian, but I have a vegetarian girlfriend so I'm a bit familiar with restaurants in the general area. Penn Hills, not so much familiarity there. There aren't a lot of strictly vegetarian places, but there are plenty of places where you can get decent vegetarian food.
Maggies: this has now closed, again. It was crazy expensive anyway.
Not too many other all-veg places I can think of.
Other stuff: any Indian or Thai restaurant of which there are plenty should do just fine. Or Chinese (my GF is not a fan really of Chinese so we don't do that much). Standouts or choices local to Penn Hills, don't really know. Other less common ethnic restaurants (Ethopian, etc.) are also good. Goes back maybe to what you'd like to eat. Most anywhere can do something that will work for you, but for an everyday type dining some places are better than others. One more weird choice you might not run across: if you like meat substitutes and like pizza/wing type food, Spak Brothers in Garfield (not far from Quiet Storm above). They make seitan wings, make their own meatless "sausage" for pizza topping, etc. Spak Brothers Pizza and More - 412-362-7725 - 5107 Penn Avenue, Pittsburgh Pa. Kinda far to take home as takeout, and not the greatest place to eat in, but it's good stuff.
There are far too many other places that I could be missing or that would also work. The list of all-veg places is very short, but the list of veg-friendly is plenty long. Oh, on the other end of pizza, upscale, sustainable, local, Dinette in East Liberty: Dinette
Grocery: Whole Foods of course, Trader Joe's can be useful, farmer's markets all around in-season for veggies, the larger Giant Eagles are adequate for some things and you have the shops in the Strip for their ethnic specialties. Our shopping is generally a periodic Trader Joe's run (we don't live near the only location in town) with the rest coming from Giant Eagle and a couple local shops which won't be particularly useful because they are in Wexford. (Neither are worth going out of your way when it's closer to go to something in the city.) CSA shares from a number of places are available, if that's something you want to try next year.
The Double Wide Grill, which I mentioned in another thread, has a pretty decent selection of vegetarian/vegan options: Pittsburgh Southside Restaurant Menu and Ordering | Doublewide Grill (http://doublewidegrill.com/ordering.html - broken link)
another suggestion is zenith in the south side. their sunday brunch is very popular.
also, if you like to support local businesses, the east end food co op is a good natural grocery within the east end natural foods triangle, near whole foods and trader joe's. their prices are pretty competitive to whole foods on some items, especially bulk items. they also have prepared foods. another option is ethnic groceries - i do a lot of shopping at the asian markets in the strip and various indian markets - there's a good one on rte 22 in monroeville called patel brothers. you can get super cheap tofu, interesting produce, and fake meats at asian markets, and indian cuisine is very vegetarian friendly.
zenith and quiet storm are the only all-vegetarian restaurants i can think of, but there are vegetarian options all over the place. oh - and i almost forgot one of my favorite restaurants - udipi, a vegetarian south indian place in monroeville. it's on old william penn highway. you will think there's no way there's a restaurant anywhere near there but then there it is, next to a gravel pit!
thai cuisine in bloomfield has a lot of fake meat stuff, as does new dumpling house in squirrel hill. china palace in shadyside also has an extensive vegetarian menu. any thai, chinese or indian place is bound to have decent vegetarian options. some of my favorites besides the ones i already mentioned are the aforementioned udipi, tamarind (locations in oakland and green tree), indian oven & taste of india in garfield for indian, green mango (they have a location in monroeville) and sweet basil/la filipiniana in lawrenceville for thai, zaws in squirrel hill for takeout chinese. the owner of zaw's is of chinese descent but grew up in indonesia so the food there is not your typical chinese. if you like southeast asian food i highly recommend the coconut tofu.
tram's and pho minh in garfield are vietnamese restaurants with a decent amount of vegetarian options. i've heard coca cafe in lawrenceville has a lot of veg stuff too, and yo rita (mexican) in the south side, although i haven't been to either.
colangelo's in the strip isn't really a sit down restaurant, but they have really good to-go food and they always have a vegetarian option. they're also happy to make any alterations you ask for.
i find that the big burrito restaurants i've been to are very vegetarian friendly. kaya, mentioned above, is owned by big burrito but they also own mad mex (there's one in monroeville). i really like their tofu tacos.
i'll second the recommendation of spak brothers - that place rules!
Holey moley, Pittsburgh is an oasis for a veg-head.
Udipi in Penn Hills, take away rice from the temple; one million pizza places in Squirrel Hill; The Milky Way in Sq Hill is kosher vegetarian; Oakland is filled with veggie restaurants. Oh yes, the Food Coop.
There are numerous Indian, Thai and Middle Eastern restaurants.
Bloomfield is also great.
Most Asian ethnic restaurants are vegetarian.
What kind of food do you like?
BTW, do you know that Aldi's owns Trader Joe's?
(This thread is making me homesick, I live in Europe and speck (bacon) is a spice like salt and pepper)
Why do I always forget the East End Food Co-op? I don't get there very often because it's not compelling enough to haul things all the way from there as compared to some of my closer options, but absolutely.
BTW, the Albrecht family (Aldi, Trader Joe's) is much more complicated than "Aldi owns Trader Joe's" when you are referring to the US stores. But they are at least distant cousins. There are two brothers. They split up the company decades ago. The brother that owns Aldi stores in the US is not the brother that owns Trader Joe's stores. Because these companies are privately held, they don't have to disclose much, and there is speculation of cooperation. But the products and target audience are for the most part rather different anyway. Very little overlap. Either way these chains are ultimately owned by companies based in Germany, that much is true.
Just be warned...SOME places that have a veg item or seperate menu and are not 100 percent veg or vegan....have and may use animal fat lard etc to prep the food...ask before ordering...I keep a somewhat flex macrobiotic diet and have seveal friends who are veg or vegan and we have encoutured this A LOT in NON veg Vegan restaurants in PA.
Sort of true, kind of. There are two brothers who own two separate Aldis. One owns Aldi South, which has stores in the south of Germany and also operates the US stores, among other countries. Aldi North is in the north of Germany, owns stores in the countries without Aldi South, has a slightly different logo and is the one that owns Trader Joe's. So, the Aldi that has stores in the US doesn't own Trader Joe's, but his brother does. However, they're still two completely separate companies. And, since you live in Europe, you're pretty much correct (assuming you live in an Aldi North country), but the Aldi here isn't connected to Trader Joe's. Thanks to my German exchange student for the Aldi lesson.
Also, I haven't eaten meat for almost 18 years and I haven't had much of a problem in Pittsburgh, but it sure isn't the West Coast, where practically every restaurant has a veggie burger on the menu. I've learned a lot of new places from this thread and can't wait to try them out, especially the pizza place in Friendship with the seitan wings!
I live in Germany, and yes, Aldi's is owned by two brothers, their companies are Aldi Nord and Aldi Sud.
The brother who owns Aldi Nord owns Trader Joe's.
They had TJ salads in the Aldi Nord in Dresden and some Aldi chocolate that I didn't try because, well, I live in Germany and eat German chocolates.
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