Sunday, December 12, 2010

Blue Dust - venture outside the Waterfront

DB~ and I went down to the Waterfront to do a little shopping and take in a movie at Loews Theater (Love and Other Drugs -- pretty good). She asked me to pick where to go for dinner as I was staring at one of my favorite places, P.F. Chang's.

However, with every fiber I resisted the chance to choose Dan Dan Noodles and went with a place that we have been meaning to try for a while now, Blue Dust. It's located on Amity, which is the main road that you use to exit the Waterfront. But instead of going straight on to the Homestead Grays bridge, make the left and go across the railroad tracks. Blue Dust is on your left as soon as you go over the tracks. It's crazy how close it is to the Waterfront. (Note - the picture is a Googled image...our picture was dark, dreary, and slush on the sidewalk. Blah to winter already.)

You know a place is going to be quirky when they list on the door that their hours of operation are 11:37 am to 1:37 am. We were also greeted with a Mad Lib-esque billboard that told us to seat ourselves. We anticipated more of a Mighty Oak Barrel (not as expensive, though) type of restaurant with some tables and a small bar. However, it was actually more of a bar with an equal amount of tables. The bar scene was quite lively, even at 6 pm on a Friday. It was a pretty wide spectrum of ages at the bar and in the restaurant -- every type from post-college hipsters to mid-30's types to those in their 50's. DB~ wondered where all these people lived, as they sure didn't seem like they lived in Homestead. Maybe they were coming/going from the Waterfront like we were, but it seemed like some of them were regulars here.

The entire interior of Blue Dust has a mural of the Steel Valley at the height of the steel industry done in a faded deep blue paint (blue dust?). It was kind of fun to look at during dinner.

DB~ was pretty much immediately won over by not only half-price tap beers from 5 to 7, but the fact that she could get Hoegarten at half-price to boot. Seeing the tab with Hoegarten at $2.13 was refreshing.

As for the food, the word on the street is that the owner (an older man that we saw circulating) uses all the recipes that his family developed over the years. If so, his family had a very eclectic menu growing up, as there is Italian, Mexican (sort of the speciality), seafood, and barbecue on the docket. DB~ went with Eggplant Parmesan, which she loved. It had a good breading and tasty marinara sauce and was served with a portion of polenta. I chose something called the Homestead Surf and Turf -- half a crab cake sandwich and half a beef brisket sandwich. I found the brisket a little dry and it needed more sauce, but I loved the thought behind it. All sandwiches are served with nacho chips and homemade salsa.

Overall, we liked Blue Dust and would go back. The prices were very affordable for food and awesome during happy hour for beers. Next time you go to the Waterfront, go off the grid and check out Blue Dust. It will be worth the trip.

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