You wouldn't expect a restaurant that specializes in beef brisket, wood-grilled steaks, and burgers to be referred to as "a hidden vegan-friendly gem" by a blogger from Yummy Plants. And yet, Double Wide Grill satisfies both meat- and vegetable-lovers, with menus that run the food-chain gamut from lentil veggie burgers to St. Louis–style pork ribs. Adding to the eclectic feel, both of the restaurant's locations are housed in converted gas stations where vintage pumps still stand out front. Indoors, the decor pays homage to these rugged beginnings with bottle-based chandeliers, a hubcap ceiling, and a vintage trailer that recalls Floridian vacations to the wetlands where all lawns' pink flamingos migrate every year.
Patrons can also stop by on weekend mornings for brunch on the outdoor patio, or hang around until late at night for karaoke and more than 30 types of beer at the license-plate-covered bar. Sports fans can watch games on four 10-foot-wide high-resolution projection screens.
If tea is the thinking person's coffee, then coffee is the tea for the thinking person's action hero. Caffeinate and consume with today's Groupon: $5 for $10 worth of organic, fair-trade coffee and casual fare at Morning Glory Coffeehouse in Morningside. Open every day, Morning Glory features free WiFi, signature sips, and intimate live music.
Gateway Grill serves breakfast daily, so early risers can head butt breakfast entrees throughout the week. Tuck into an array of omelets packed with veggies, cheeses, and meats ($6.99–7.99), or breakfast sandwiches such as the belt ($6.99), which uses its namesake to keep bacon, egg, and tomato fillings from bursting out of grilled italian bread.
The chefs at Zaiaka draw on their knowledge of 1,000-year-old recipes to fill their menu with authentic Indian dishes, which they say helped earn them a 2012 Readers' Choice Gold Award for Best Ethnic Food from Trib Total Media. They cook vegetarian dishes including palak paneer, house-made cheese cubes and fresh spinach cooked in ground spices, and vegetable biryani, the chef's specialty rice entree. Naan bread baked in the eatery’s clay tandoor pairs with rogan josh, lamb cooked in a gravy of aromatic spices. During dinner, the dining area swells with soft music, which is punctuated with the clink of wineglasses full of beverages brought from home. Like a maitre d’ arriving late to work, the dark tables are draped in white tablecloths, and light flutters across the rich tapestries that cover the walls.
Named after retired Chicago police officer Jim Mullen, who was seriously injured in the line of duty, Mullen's Bar & Grill first opened its doors in the Windy City before branching out to Pittsburgh. Classic bar fare such as boneless wings, nachos, and burgers shares menu space with deep-fried philly cheesesteak sandwiches and SpaghettiO's straight from the can. An entire squad of flat-screen televisions hangs from exposed rafters so eaters can easily view broadcasted sports without craning their necks or duct taping rear view mirrors to their wrists. Mullen's Bar & Grill has two locations, one stationed near the cheering crowds at PNC Park and the other in the midst of the nightlife scene on Carson Street.