PhotoBlog: Pittsburgh’s Best Restaurant Party

The Pittsburgh TasteBuds attended Pittsburgh’s Best Restaurant Party on June 4, 2012 at Heinz Field.  At the event, Cure won “Best in Show” as voted by the attendees of the event.

Pittsburgh TasteBuds attend Best Restaurant Party
Pittsburgh TasteBuds attend Best Restaurant Party (TasteBudA and TasteBudB)
Displays of sweet, savory and everything in between were featured at the event
Displays of sweet, savory and everything in between were featured at the event
Arpino Trattoria was awarded best BYOB in Pittsburgh.  The TasteBuds will have to have an exchange there soon!
Arpino Trattoria was awarded best BYOB in Pittsburgh. The TasteBuds will have to have an exchange there soon!
Restaurants lined the club level of Heinz Field for the event.  Over 50 restaurants were represented.
Restaurants lined the club level of Heinz Field for the event. Over 50 restaurants were represented.

Search is on for Pittsburgh’s Best Wings

WPXI is searching for Pittsburgh’s Best Wings.  For the TasteBuds, when it comes to a good chicken wing, we’re looking for much more thank Frank’s Red Hot on a breaded wing.  When it comes to the Pittsburgh’s Best series of food accolades, it is great to know that it is based on a good mild wing and a specialty wing.

Think you know a restaurant or bar with a great wing?
As a former WPXI taste-tester, check out the TasteBud’s Keys to a Great Chicken Wing for our secrets to winning and then head over to WPXI.com and submit your nominations.

TasteBud’s Keys to a Great Chicken Wing

Be Meaty – A good, solid chicken wing should have a good amount of meat on it.  If it feels like it’d take dozens of wings to fill up a hungry Steelers fan.

Mild ≠ Flavorless – A mild wing should be something that does have a minor spice kick to it, but nothing that would require ranch or celery to help cool the heat.  Remember, just because a wing is mild, doesn’t mean it shouldn’t have flavor.

Creativity Reaps Rewards – Be creative without being wacky.  I’d much sooner try a lime-tequila wing (even sounds yum) before I’d try a honey and parmesan (when has sweet and cheesy ever worked?).
Oh, and just because the Mild wing is the first category – don’t try to do your Hot wing as your creative one.  Perhaps try a dry rub? or a rub-infused sauce?

Not Breaded – A chicken wing is not shake ‘n bake.  It is quite okay to bake, grill or coal-fire your chicken wings, but leave the bread for the birds.  Don’t use breading as a ploy to soak up the sauce.

An added bonus but not required:
Good Cold – Ever gone out for wings and your eyes were bigger than your stomach?  A chicken wing, like pizza, should be edible cold.  If it seems like something I could eat as a left-over, then


Please note: The Pittsburgh TasteBuds are not judges for this round of WPXI’s Pittsburgh’s Best.  But if we were, these would be the things we’d look for as we judged.

TasteBuds Judge Pittsburgh’s Best Hoagies with other local celebrities

This afternoon, TasteBudA and I had the pleasure of judging the WPXI Pittsburgh’s Best Hoagies contest where 10 of Pittsburgh’s top hoagie restaurants were put in a head-to-head competition for the prestigious title of having Pittsburgh’s Best Hoagie.  The competitors were chosen by online nomination and the top 10 were included in today’s final round of judging.  Judges included media personalities WPXI anchor David Johnson and 96.1 KISS FM morning show hosts, Mikey and Big Bob.  Special guest judges included Derrick Kosinski (from MTV reality shows), Frank Murgia from the Talent Network and  The Pittsburgh TasteBuds.
The competition was fierce and filling … and all 10 judges may have gas for a week, but it was worth it to participate in such a fun afternoon of taste testing.
Each restaurant submitted two hoagies, one italian hoagies and one speciality hoagie. Each hoagie was given a maximum score of 10 points and the restaurants total score was made up of their hoagie’s composite score.  

Watch for us on tonight’s news broadcast on WPXI and stay tuned for some online video and commentary.