There's something to be said for wandering this city we call home: you just might find a new favorite place right around the corner.Ann
and I had the urge to frolic in the park today, so we went to Highland Park and played in the fountain with the local kids. I gave away the Nerf football that had been residing in my trunk for the past 4 years to kids who would get more use from it than I do. Then we walked around the reservoir, which I'd never seen before, and I was possessed by the urge to roll down a hill -- which I did, without my glasses, resulting in a blurrier-than-normal blur as I sped downhill toward a parking car. Disney should include that sensation in their next motion thrill ride...
Afterwards, we started to drive back to Squirrel Hill when we saw a shaded cafe on Highland Avenue called Enrico's Tazza D'oro
and -- again, on a whim -- stopped in for a chai and cookie.
The chai was great (among the best we've had in Pittsburgh). The Reese's Pieces cookie was small but delectable. The service was friendly and very helpful, and the barista from London added a wonderful touch of Euro-authenticity to the proceedings.
The atmosphere is also very inviting: hardback padded chairs, imprecise seating arrangements, cozy (some might say dim) lighting and a generally warm ambience. The neighborhood is multicultural, comprised of what seems to be equal parts grad students and chilled-out professionals. All the kids were cute, especially the 2 or 3 year-old boy who smiled and waved with authentic joy at everyone who entered or exited, including the dogs. Seeing happy families relaxing in a cafe on the weekend gives me hope for our future, or at least for a pleasant evening.
And, best of all: free wireless!
On first visit, I believe this scores a 5 out of 5 on the "Five Key Elements of a Good Cafe"
scale. I'll have to come back and test-drive the paninis. They're a bit expensive for my taste ($7-$9 apiece), but seem worth a bite.
Will I return? Certainly. Probably without the grass stains.