New Food, New Friends
I’ve lived in Pittsburgh for almost twelve years now. In that time, I’ve worn a Steelers jersey, eaten a Primanti Bros. sandiwch (the original weird meat patty one), and downed one or two Iron City brews, all in the name of embracing what my new city had to offer. One staunch holdout however, is that in all my time here, I’ve never in my life eaten Pierogi. Pasta and potato…all starch, and a combination that I could never understand. They say that the Irish gave kilts and bagpipes to the Scots five hundred years ago as a joke and they still haven’t gotten it. I’ve always assumed a similar history with whoever introduced this dish to the Poles. Nonetheless, my friends were horrified enough at this glaring dietary omission to arrange a secret plate of Peirogi be brought to me and finally put me to the test. I was hesitant at first, not because the dish looked at all unappealing–indeed, with the sour cream and onions and (oh, they’re fried too?), it looked quite good. But I had worn my Pierogi abstinence as a badge of honor since I’d passed ten years in Pittsburgh, and I was reluctant to give it up so unexpectedly. However, it was a gesture given with affection (thanks, Ilene), and the moment soon rose to the proper level of ceremony that I was prepared to step boldly into the unknown.
But my pierogi moment aside, the night should be more memorable for two new friends met, great conversation, and lots of laughs. And Sazeracs. 1947 makes the best I’ve had.