Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Top 5 Tuesday | Open Mic Night

I pick up a guitar every once in a while  - it relaxes me and happens to be one of my favorite things to do with some of my closest friends. I've even played a couple mics before (some more successful than others). I think I enjoy playing music because it's been a part of my life since I was young - my grandpa always kept a guitar in his garage and listened to Hank Williams, Patsy Cline and Johnny Cash. And it just so happens to be Johnny Cash's birthday today.  So strap on your guitars, dust off your music books, and get to one of these awesome open mics - or just attend one, you would be amazed at how talented people are!  In light of Johnny's birthday, here are my top 5 favorite open mics:

Club Cafe


Considered Pittsburgh's #1 Open Stage Club Cafe  hosts their AcousticCafe's open stage with Mike Why. Fashioned after some of the high profile and wildly successful open stages in Nashville and New York City, AcoustiCafe's open stage intends to create a supportive environment for artists to network with their peers, test new music or haul out old favorites, and most importantly, extend their reach in the local scene. Every Monday at 7pm - No cover charge! 

Eclipse Lounge
Every Wednesday from 8 -12am, Eclipse Lounge hosts their very successful open mic. It's quickly becoming one of the top places to hang out on a Wedsday in the city!

Bloomfield Bridge Tavern


Amazing Polish food, cold beer, and live music, what better way to spend your Tuesday night than at this "Polish Party House"?  BBT hosts open mic every Tuesday at 9pm.

Papa Di Vinci 


Located on Forbes Ave. near Duquesne University, Papa Di Vinci packs a full house every Tuesday from  9pm - 1am along with featured performers.  Grab a slice of pizza and get ready to hear some amazing local talent.

Thunderbird Cafe


Perfect for the bluesy - jazz guitar type!  The Thunderbird Cafe is located in Lawrenceville and holds acoustic open mics hosted every Monday at 9:30pm by Craig King - No Cover Charge!!

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Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Top 5 Tuesday | Valentine's Day Dinner Restaurants

Hey Pittsburgh!  Have you gotten your Valentine's Day plans squared away yet?  If not, then feast your eyes on my Top 5 Valentine's Day restaurants - perfect for any relationship status.  Each of these restaurants promise interesting, mouth watering menu items, great settings (some more intimate than others), and good company! Hope your Valentine's Day is scrumptious!

A sushi roll from Penn Ave. Fish Company

Penn Avenue Fish Company
Penn Ave. Fish Company is one of my favorite places in the city for seafood!  Served fresh everyday, they specialize in sushi, gigantic fish sandwiches (grilled or fried), fish soups, and daily specialty entrees. With locations in the Strip District and Downtown, it provides an upscale, trendy, yet comfortable environment with fun and interesting staff to talk to as they prepare your food.  Here, you can literally get dinner, then buy fresh fish for later on in the weekend - market style- before you leave. Grab a bottle of wine and get ready to have some of the best seafood in Pittsburgh. They're planning a special menu for Valentine's Day that includes oysters on half shell!  Find out more and make a reservation HERE.

Pizza Del Rey from Mercurio's (foodspotting)

You may be thinking, "Pizza? Seriously?" But quite the contrary, pizza can be very romantic (you can share it) especially in a place like Mercurio's.  Mercurio's is a new hot spot on Walnut St. for Italian food.  It's a family owned and operated restaurant specializing in fresh and authentic Italian dishes: oven roasted pizzas, anti-pasta, paninis, salads, and best of all - homemade artisan gelato in over 40 interesting flavors (stracciatella anyone?)! With a small bistro-like feel, Mercurio's is perfect for a romantic and relaxing Valentine's dinner.  Share a pizza, some antipasti and a bottle of wine from their list,  then finish it off with a decadent scoop of gelato.  Buon Apetito! Find out more about Mercurio's HERE.

Ethiopian Sampler Platter from Abay (foodspotting)

Since sharing is caring on a day such as Valentine's Day, why not take it to the next level at a place that encourages sharing food and eating with your hands? Located at Penn Circle in East Liberty, Abay serves up authentic Ethiopian cuisine that begs to be shared and enjoyed with others.  As you sit around the mesobs - traditional basket-like tables - you'll experience authentic Ethiopian culture, from everything to the art on the walls to their interesting menu.  Each platter is served with injera - an Ethiopian flatbread - as a substitution for a plate, fork or spoon.  Simply tear off a piece of injera and dunk it into one of their amazing, saucy dishes.  Finish it off with an Ethiopian coffee and a dessert!.  Don't worry, if you're scared to make a mess in front of your date, there is regular seating  and utensils available upon request. Find out more about Abay HERE.

Fire & Ice Seviche 

Headed for a night on the town - Downtown that is? Seviche is a perfect spot to take your sweetheart or a group of friends to for a spicy Valentine's Day treat.  Seviche is Pittsburgh's hottest Spanish tapas restaurant with menu items perfect for a group tasting or a couple's feast in an order-as-you-go fashion.  Seviche is a preparation of fresh seafood marinated in citrus juice and then consumed moments later - at Seviche they feature seven different preparations as well as other tapas style entrees - mini pork cubans, ahi tuna sliders, bistec and empanadas.  It's a great place to go if you and your date are the indecisive kind who want to try a little bit of everything.  This year, Seviche has a special Valentine's Day menu prepared for $80 a couple which features a three-course meal, dessert, and a complimentary glass of sparkling wine.  See the menu HERE and find out more about Seviche HERE.

Hofbrauhaus Reuben Sandwich (facebook)

Not into the whole fluff and frills of Valentine's Day, but still want to have an amazing dinner?  Head down to Hofbrauhaus for some schnitzel and a stein! Hofbrahaus is a traditional German style beer hall featuring authentic German dishes - can you say Kartoffelpfannkuchen (aka potato pancakes), German beer which they brew on site (this month's specialty beer is a Dopplebock called "Adulterator" with hints of chocolate, coffee and caramel), live German music, and of course - shot skis!!!!!  For Valentine's Day they have a special menu for $50 a couple that includes a choice of the house wine or of half liter of beer...I mean bier..Check out the Valentine's Day menu HERE and get more info on Hofbrauhaus HERE.

You have read this article Abay / Best restaurants for Valentine's Day in Pittsburgh / Hofbrauhaus / Mercurio's / Penn Avenue Fish Company / Seviche / top valentines day restaurants in Pittsburgh / Valentine's Day Pittsburgh with the title February 2013. You can bookmark this page URL https://afreakatheart.blogspot.com/2013/02/top-5-tuesday-valentine-day-dinner.html. Thanks!
Monday, February 11, 2013

Monday Spotlight | Pretty Living PR

Pretty Living PR

Happy Monday Pittsburgh!  In light of the most romantic week of the year, this week's spotlight congratulates my dear friends at Pretty Living PR on their debut as Pittsburgh's new go-to source for all things pretty and all things Pittsburgh.  PLPR provides exposure and creates relationships among models, designers, hair dressers, bloggers, make up artists and more around the area!

Charity by Dawn Lily makeup line

Some of their clients include Charity by Dawn Lily skincare & cosmetics, fitness model and IFBB professional Lynn Sambuco, Ahseiat-inoR, Enhanced Creativity and the CMU fashion team.  They are also the masterminds behind some of the city's hottest upcoming events:

  • Join PLPR this weekend (Feb 16th) at the CMU Lunar Gala Fashion Show for an exclusive peek at Pittsburgh's top fashion designers, as well as new and upcoming student designers to keep your eye on.
Looks likes things just got pretty in the Steel City!  Have a great week everyone!  

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Monday, February 4, 2013

Monday Spotlight | Fall in Love with the Phillips House Collection

What do you get when you add timeless sophistication and modern chic?  Why, the gorgeous collections of Phillips House of course!  Since the launching of their line in 2010, Phillips House has become a breakthrough name in jewelry design; its available in nearly 50 stores in the US, including SAKS, Louis Anthony and Orr's Jewelers right here in Pittsburgh.  The intricately crafted baubles of Phillips House has caught the eye of publications such as Women's Wear Daily, Harper's Bazaar, Elle, Vanity Fair, Oprah and Glamour.  

Phillips House pieces have also been spotted on some of the biggest names around: The First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama, chose to wear a pair of Phillips House earrings to meet with Queen Elizabeth II, Duchess Kate Middleton, and the Royal Family in 2011. The jewelry has additionally become a favorite among other celebrities such as Zooey Deschanel, Lauren Conrad, Kerry Washington, Erin Wasson, and Mamie Gummer, among others.

 Lisa (maiden name Phillips) and Danielle Frankel, are the masterminds behind the Phillips House line.  The mother and daughter began their line in Miami.  Lisa has been an artist her whole life and Danielle is a ballerina turned fashion student.  Lisa's artistic eye mixed with Danielle's knowledge of fashion, has helped them create a dynamic collection that is modern and timeless all at once, and leads rather than follows the fashion trends.  

Just in time for Valentine's Day, Phillips House will be hosting a trunk show at Orr's Jewelers this Saturday, February 9th in Squirrel Hill from 9:30am - 5:30pm. Take a peek at their lovely collection including the new "Love Always" collection which holds sentimental value to the Phillips House collection.  

The Pittsburgh Look digs deeper into the Phillips House collection.....

TPL:  Where did your draw your inspiration from for your "Love Always" collection?
PH: Growing up in Boston, Lisa’s mother used to stop her at the door to button up the top button of her coat before sending her off to school. Lisa and Danielle wanted to create an iconic bangle that any woman could wear, and put on herself. The “button” concept held such sentimental meaning that they created a proprietary button closure, which can be worn by everyone. The personalization on the inside is another nod to the sentimentality.

TPL: What makes your collections unique in the industry?
PH: The two designers – Lisa and Danielle Frankel – get their inspirations from very different places, and as a result, the collections offer a range of appeal and design aesthetic, from classic and traditional to chic and sophisticated.  Moreover, despite being a newer brand, we strive to focus not only on purely design but also on craftsmanship and functionality, so that the wearer can feel a collectability with their Phillips House pieces.

TPL: What kind of person wears your jewelry?
PH: The fans of our jewelry are often described as classically chic women who are excited to discover something new and exciting, while sophisticated, in the fine jewelry space.


VISIT Phillips House website HERE.
FOLLOW Phillips House on Facebook HERE
SAY HELLO to Phillips House on Twitter HERE
CHECK OUT Phillips House on Instagram HERE. 

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