After consuming 16 boxes of Trader Joe's Australian Strawberry Licorice that I had shipped to me by mail from various relatives living near a TJ's store, I finally made it to a Trader Joe's Store for the very first time! My Mom thought I was insane (more than usual) when I added a grocery store to the list of things to do during my short visit home to Pittsburgh. She, My Sandy, and I braved the nasty Pittsburgh heat and humidity and went to Trader Joe's!
They even painted this cute welcome sign, just for us!
I, too, questioned my sanity - wondering if I'd be experiencing a typical, cookie-cutter, chain store after all the building anticipation. Trader Joe is a clever one and the store SCREAMED Pittsburgh! I was in Burgh, and food, bliss.
Steelers emblem in the wall, 6 Lombardi trophy's above, Steelers clock... awesome! Also, I'm sure there's no other TJ's in the world with 6 Lombardi's! Had to throw it in there :) WOO HOO football is back on!
Much of the decor in the front of the store is beachy-fun and there are several parrots. This particular parrot is a Pittsburgh Pirates fan and his little ball cap made me laugh out loud! Does that make him a Pirate Parrot, too?
2 of 3 Burgh sports teams - covered. Next up, bridges! They're everywhere around tahn and around TJ's!
They're even labeled! Here's the 16th Street bridge, how cute?
The Fort Pitt bridge. This bridge is my favorite - if I'm on it that means I'm either on my way to the cabin or to Penn State!
The 9th Street Bridge. This one is next to PNC Park and actually got a great photo of the real bridge at a Pirate's Game. Want to see?
I thought you did :) Here's the 9th Street Bridge at night. Pittsburgh is so charming!
The unique Smithfield Street bridge is in the produce section! Speaking of unique - do you see all those tomatoes there on the bottom shelf?
That's where I found these Brown Tomatoes! Have you ever seen or heard of them, or made anything with them? I didn't have time to experiment in the kitchen while I was home and passed on the opportunity to have my very own Brown Tomatoes.
This baked goods sign, made to mimic the point where the 3 river meet downtown, is so fabulous! I'd buy one for myself if it were an option! The pie fountain is the best part.
I bought one of the skinny baguette loaves from the side and made strawberry, feta cheese & mint bruschetta with it! I took a picture, but... it's better left up to your imagination :) It was delicious, although not pretty.
We got some chocolate covered blueberries, green figs, and these dried green beans. They were just ok, I wouldn't buy them again.
This garlic naan bread was so good! I topped it with hummus or cheese and put it in the toaster oven for a minute, YUM!
Trader Joe's was even better than I expected, overall! The prices were very reasonable, too. I was sad that I barely got to eat any of the food I bought from TJs and wish Hawaii could get our very own store!