The Open Road is a Must Stop for Non-Alcoholic Beverages

As those involved in the alcohol space, it has been interesting watching both consumer demand and production shift towards non-alcoholic products.

While not going to take over the traditional markets for beer, wine, and liquors, non-alcoholic alternatives have been rising in popularity in recent years just about everywhere you look.

For those who are seeking out these products, there is a store in Pittsburgh you absolutely cannot miss- The Open Road in Allentown!

This store has just about everything you could want for all things NA beverages in the city!

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Vendor Bender Brings International Snacks to Squirrel Hill

When we travel, we often try new snacks and beverages that we rarely see again. From weird flavored potato chips to an unusual sparkling beverage or candy, these random food items tend to make a lasting memory we wish we could enjoy once more at home.

At Vendor Bender in Squirrel Hill, you get just that.

This dedicated vending machine store does not just have a load of snacks and drinks for customers to enjoy, but the vast majority come from countries all over the world!

So if you're looking for a highly sought-after treat or beverage you've enjoyed while traveling, Vendor Bender is for you.

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Fat Butcher Brings Quality Local Meats to Lawrenceville

When it comes to buying meats in Pittsburgh, we always look for two things- local farms using ethical practices and, if possible, processed by a skilled butcher.

The former is easy to find, and the latter, well, let's say the art of butchering meat felt like it was on its way out for quite some time with only a few famed butchers remaining in and around Pittsburgh.

Thankfully, this profession is starting to make a resurgence in the city, and if it is anything like what the team at Fat Butcher in Lawrenceville is doing, we are sold on what the future will be like.

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Steel City Garage Brings Epic Pittsburgh Gear to Cranberry

You know we are suckers for a good Pittsburgh t-shirt, one of our favorite stores in the area is the downtown-based Steel City as many of their shirts capture what it means to truly be a proud Pittsburgher. The “I'm Just Here for the Pierogies” shirt is a great one to wear at PNC Park and the “Pittsburgh – So Many Rings it Should Be a Planet” shirt we could wear just about everywhere to name a few.

As this one has been selling its gear online and downtown for over 15 years, we were delighted to find out that they are now expanding to its second location, the aptly named Steel City Garage, to the Streets of Cranberry in Cranberry Township.

We were able to check out this store for a sneak preview and wanted to share more about what you can find here!

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Sarris Candies is Pittsburgh’s Premier Chocolate Shop

Every major city in the country has a local chocolate shop of critical acclaim, and in the Pittsburgh metro, that shop is none other than Canonsburg-based Sarris Candies.

While we often pick up Sarris Candies' chocolates at shops all over the city as they're stocked just about everywhere, it is hard to pass up making a trip to their store in Canonsburg. Not only does this one have an incredible amount of chocolate, they also have candy, ice cream, and a pretty stellar ambiance as well!

So if you are planning on making the drive south to Canonsburg, we wanted to share a bit about what you can expect in this one.

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Public Lands in Cranberry Helps You Enjoy the Great Outdoors

If you explore outdoors as we do, odds are good you've shopped in outdoor specialty stores from time to time to pick up gear and supplies. One such chain you have likely visited is DICK's Sporting Goods as their stores are, well, seemingly everywhere.

But what you may not know is that DICK's Sporting Goods is now a Pittsburgh company as their headquarters can be found in Coraopolis (the company relocated their headquarters to the area in 1994).

As such, when DICK's decided to launch a new outdoor-oriented specialty store known as Public Lands, it should be no surprise that the very first location was announced to be right here in southwest Pennsylvania. We were fortunate enough to visit the store during its soft open in September 2021 and have a chance to share about what to expect when visiting the Cranberry Township location!

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Drinking Your Way Around PA at Pennsylvania Libations

Pennsylvania liquor laws are weird. In fact, we'd go as far as saying they're awful. Between the state-run liquor stores, limited accessibility of beer and wine outside of producers and select sellers, and other oddities, finding a good bottle to enjoy in Pennsylvania does not come without its challenges.

Thankfully, some of the most archaic of regulations have been changing in recent years, and one such change has allowed for the creation of a unique store in the Strip District called Pennsylvania Libations (now with a second location in Shadyside, too!).

Their products? 100% Pennsylvania-made spirits.

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10 Specialty Stores for Shopping Outside of the Strip

When it comes to boutique shopping in Pittsburgh, it is really easy for us to simply direct you to the Strip District and (almost) call it a day. This neighborhood has so many specialty stores that you can find a great number of products all within a ~10-block shopping district.

That being said, leaving the shopping discussion to purely the Strip District would be doing you a disservice as there are many other boutique and specialty stores in the Pittsburgh area. 

In this one, we wanted to share a few of our favorites all with one thing in common- none of these are located in the Strip District. So if you're looking for a store to go deep into a particular style or item, these are a few great places to start!

Note: We know that there are way more than the following in the metro area. As with everything on this site, we will add more great stores as we visit them!

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Grove City Outlets is a Massive Shopping Mall Near Pittsburgh

I'll be honest- in our quest to support local we often overlook some of the more commercial and national entities that are available in the city. Shopping is no different.

As such, I never expected to find myself stopping at Grove City Outlets. But on my way home from a trip to Erie and Presque Isle State Park, I saw the outlets coming up and decided to pull over.

While the outlet is still a commercial retail space for national brands, I have to say that the collection of shops is rather impressive all the same.

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Salty Pork Bits Review – Charcuterie by Justin Severino

Note: Salty Pork Bits closed its brick and mortar store in Lawrenceville in June 2022. This review is from enjoying the charcuterie online via their subscription service. A la carte purchases are also available.

When Justin Severino's acclaimed restaurant, Cure, closed in 2019, we were pretty heartbroken. So heartbroken, in fact, that we would tag the chef in sad updates every time we walked past the now-closed Lawrenceville storefront. (I'm not sure he appreciated it, granted, we also never asked.)

We do this because, in all honesty, Cure was perhaps the best restaurant in Pittsburgh during its run and we were sad to see it go.

Thankfully, Justin Severino had a plan to offer his charcuterie to the world and opened up Salty Pork Bits- an online store where you get his charcuterie whenever you like. Naturally, Angie got a subscription for me as a birthday present, and it was like having Cure's stellar charcuterie board at home as much as I wanted.

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