Our last morning in Pittsburgh started out with some free orange juice and mini muffins at the hotel, and then it was time to pack up and hit the road. We had plans to stop for lunch and ice cream before leaving the city, and then to drive the old Lincoln Highway all the way east until we hit Gettysburg. We were deliberately taking the "back roads" instead of the interstate, but we had a whole list of places we wanted to visit on the way, the types of roadside spots you would miss on the toll road. It was our Pennsylvania road trip, so we wanted to see as much of Pennsylvania as possible.
We decided to spend our last moments in Pittsburgh in an area called Oakland, home to a lot of universities in the city. We were mostly heading there because A wanted to take me to an ice cream shop that he liked, and before we left, I looked up places that might be nearby for lunch on Yelp. There was a taco joint with good reviews down the street, so we decided to try that. What we didn't realize was that it was actually a Mexican grocery store with a griddle and taco bar on the street outside, but that was actually better for us since we weren't entirely sure whether we were parked in a legal spot (signs were a bit confusing) and eating outside would mean we could keep watch on our car.
We got three different tacos -- chorizo, chicken, and pork -- which came on doubled corn tortillas with no toppings. The reason for that was because they had an entire bar of toppings and salsas next to it so you could pile on whatever you wanted. For us, that meant some guacamole and salsa verde, and tons of pico de gallo, onions, and cilantro. We love eating tacos with a garden on top of them, and this one had lots of options.
We don't remember a ton of the details about the tacos four years later, stuff like which one we liked best, but we do remember they were really tasty. I wish we had taken notes, because they look really good in the photos and I would love to remember more about the experience.
After the tacos, it was time for ice cream from Dave & Andy's, known as one of the best ice cream shops in Pittsburgh. A had been there once before when he was in college and really enjoyed it. The thing Dave & Andy's is known for, besides good ice cream, is that they put an M&M on the bottom of the cone to prevent the ice cream from dripping out. Smart idea.
We each got a cone. For me, it was a no-brainer to get birthday cake, which made my favorite food memories list back in 2013. They mixed yellow cake and sprinkles into the ice cream and it was delicious. The waffle cone, even though I'm not usually a cone person, was crispy and sturdy, and it was just a great ice cream cone all around. A doesn't remember exactly what he got (maybe something coffee-based), and back then we didn't always take pictures of the menu board, but he does remember he liked it.
Back when A went there the first time with other Pittsburgh folks, they told him that the thing to do there was to try to guess the color of the M&M at the bottom before you got to it. No idea if this is a real tradition or not, but we did it anyway because it was fun. I guessed blue, and it was blue. A guessed orange, and his was orange. We were pretty happy that we both guessed right.
After our tacos and ice cream, we drove over to the Lincoln Highway to start meandering our way across the state. We had a lot of stops planned -- the Flight 93 Memorial first, followed by a really fun and mind-boggling trip to Gravity Hill (completely worth it), and more -- but for now, it was goodbye to Pittsburgh!