IN GOOD TIMES OR BAD, Pittsburghers like a fish sandwich and a place to savor this culinary icon is also a fixture in the city's psyche -- Wholey's, which this weekend is celebrating its 100th anniversary with a festival at its Strip District store. The famous fish market wasn't always in that location. As reported in the PG's Food & Flavor section Thursday, Wholey's started in 1912 as a store in McKees Rocks, selling mostly butter and eggs but also live poultry, meats, sausages and coffees. The St. Patrick's Day flood of 1936 devastated Wholey's, but in 1948, with the return of Robert C. Wholey, son of the founder, from World War II, the store was moved to Downtown's Diamond Market, where Market Square is now. After the old market was razed in 1959, Wholey's moved to its present location in the Strip. In 1960, it started selling fresh fish -- and the rest is history, or for some Pittsburghers, lunch.
WHEN IT COMES to festivals, it is the time of year to celebrate Oktoberfest, the traditional Bavarian romp of suds and sausage. Oktoberfest will be held this weekend and next at Penn Brewery on the North Side. Those crying in their beer over the state of the economy might add a tear for the founder of the brewery, Tom Pastorius, who died Sept. 6 of prostate cancer at the age of 67. He had the distinction of being Pennsylvania's first microbrewer, which required a change in state law to make happen, and was nationally known in the craft beer industry. His beer followed an old German recipe and he held his first Oktoberfest just weeks after opening Penn Brewery in 1989. Here's to the memory of Tom Pastorius: Prost!