The Food Column: Hometown-Homegrown

Heinz History Center’s “Hometown-Homegrown” event returns for a third year from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 21, with cooking demos by local “celebrity” chefs.

Nearly 40 local farms, grocers, wineries and other food-related businesses also will offer samples and sell their wares at a trade show inside the center. Several of the vendors have historic ties to the region, including 5 Generation Bakers, which started in the West End in 1875, and Market Square’s Original Oyster House, which dates back to 1870.

The schedule of cooking demos, to be held in the Weisbrod Kitchen Classroom, is as follows:

10:30 a.m.: Jared Lordon, Social at Bakery Square

11:30 a.m.: Rick Sebak and Chris Fennimore, WQED

12:30 p.m.: Kevin Sousa, Superior Motors

1:30 p.m. Bill Fuller, Big Burrito Group

The Strip District’s Wigle Whiskey will offer a presentation on the history of Pittsburgh spirits at 2 p.m. in the Detre Library on the sixth floor – and they’ll offer tastings, too.

Children’s activities will be held on the fourth floor of the center.

Attendees are encouraged to bring their old cookbooks and swap them for “new-to-you” cookbooks at a “Cookbook Exchange” table.

Hometown-Homegrown activities and food samples are free with History Center admission, which is $15 for adults, $13 for seniors, $6 for students and free for children ages 5 and under.

For more information, go to


Slavic Food Festival: Fish fry (Friday only), pork and kielbasa sandwiches and roasted half-chicken dinners (Saturday only), and Slavic favorites such as stuffed cabbage, pierogies, haluski, spanakopita, nut rolls, nut- and apricot horns, baklava and more, plus ethnic music and dance performances. 4 to 10 p.m. Friday, June 20, and Saturday, June 21, at Resurrection Byzantine Catholic Church in Monroeville. 412-759-0245.

Stroll the Strip: Taste and sip your way through various Strip District businesses, including Heinz History Center, In the Kitchen, Wigle Whiskey, Thin Man Sandwich Shop, Lidia’s, Pittsburgh Public Market and many more. Check in between 4:30 and 7 p.m. Thursday, June 26, at the History Center or Pittsburgh Winery; after-party is from 7:30 to 10 p.m. at Cruze Bar. Tickets are $45; open to ages 21 and up only.

Western Pennsylvania Rib Fest: Ribs, other food, beer, live music, children’s activities. 5 to 10 p.m. Friday, June 27; 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, June 28; and 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday, June 29. Westmoreland Fairgrounds, Greensburg. (click “Western Pennsylvania Rib Fest”).

FEASTival Food and Fun Fest: Food trucks and vendors, live music, crafts, rock wall climbing and more. Noon to 7 p.m. Saturday, June 28, in McKees Rocks Municipal Parking Lot.


Summer Solstice Sessions: Starting at 8 a.m. Sunday, June 22, Legume Bistro is holding a series of workshops, subtitled “Engaging our Food Communities,” in the Oakland restaurant and at adjacent Butterjoint. Presenters include chef-owner Trevett Hooper, blogger Leah Lizarondo and local (and sometimes PG) writers Virginia Phillips and Hal B. Klein. A vegetarian lunch will be served. There’s also a dinner that night but it’s sold out. Tickets are $30, or $45 with the “Drink Fresh Drink Local” workshop, which is $20 on its own.

Delicious & Nutritious: Eating Healthy on a Budget: Public health nurse Lorraine Starsky offers presentation, healthy refreshments, giveaways and chances to win Giant Eagle gift cards. 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, June 21, at Senior Care Plaza in McKeesport. Free. 412-247-7816.

Lunch & Learn: Food activist Leah Lizarondo of Brazen Kitchen demonstrates raw food recipes. Noon to 1 p.m. Thursday, July 17, at Pittsburgh Public Market in the Strip District. Free admission; lunch is included. Reservations are required by e-mailing

Wine & beer & spirits

Grain-to-Glass: Tastings of locally produced wines, spirits and beers, plus live entertainment and a showcase of sustainable-agriculture activities. 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Friday, June 27, at Chatham University’s Eden Hall Campus in Richland. $30 per person or $50 per couple. Open to ages 21 and up only. 412-365-1375.

Trax Farms’ Summer Wine Festival: Ten local wineries, food trucks, live music and locally made crafts and art. Noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, June 28, at Trax Farms in Finleyville. $20 in advance; $30 at door.

Wigle Whiskey Garden Fig Fest: The Italian Garden Project invites you to celebrate the arrival of the first figs of the season with traditional Italian music, fig delicacies, Wigle whiskey, cooking demos by Vallozzi’s Pittsburgh Executive Chef Josiah Henry, and silent auction by Mondo Italiano. 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, June 26, in the Wigle Whiskey Garden, 1055 Spring Garden Ave., North Side. $35 in advance; $40 at the door.


Lewis Family Farms Dinner: Emjoy dinner in the fields where much of it was grown. 5 p.m. Saturday, July 19, at Lewis Family Farms in New Sewickley Township. $100 per person.

Five-Course Beer Tasting Dinner: The Strip District’s Osteria 2350 and Lawrenceville’s Hop Farm Brewing Co. team up to present a five-course dinner with beer pairings. 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 23, at Osteria 2350. $55. 412-281-3090.

Volunteer op

Open garden hours: Got a hankering to do some vegetable gardening? Bellevue’s Rosalinda Sauro Sirianni Garden, which supplies fresh produce for North Hills Community Outreach food pantries, has open volunteer hours from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Mondays and the first, second and fourth Wednesdays of each month through September, as well as from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the third Thursdays of each month. Supervised children are welcome.

Rebecca Sodergren: or on Twitter @pgfoodevents.


Hot Topic