Exploring Homestead

Saturday afternoon in Homestead PA. Just across the Monongahela River.You take the Homestead Grays Bridge.

Annex Cookery has moved across the street into a wonderfully restored building and is now Art Space as well, featuring lots of interesting furniture, sculptures and art. Check out those fun and creative clocks! Delicious coffee will be served in a couple of weeks, once the rest of the chairs are delivered.

Trib Article David Lewis

Meet the Mayor of Homestead Betty Esper




Just down the block is Studio AM  (available for private events-catering

open Thursday and Sunday- check link for hours and menu)img_0987img_0985img_0988


Retro on 8th sent out the invitations. They have everything from furniture music, books, toys, jewelry, clothing and even a huge mid-century orange ashtray.






Meet RetroOn8th Co-Owner Hayley



In the same building as Annex Cookery and Art Space– I got the tour (thanks Daniel)

if you need well lit office space….just $1500 a month-   if you’re interested leave a comment below.

and upstairs is a spacious 2stories of fabulous loft apartment to rent……

You can live and work in the same building.


Christmas Shopping at the Annex Cookery in Homestead PA

After school let out,  I drove down to Homestead from Carrick.  Judith and Daniel extended a warm welcome and we caught up.  I hadn’t been there in awhile but was so glad I went.

I had my Christmas list and wanted to support my Independent Kitchen Store.

First, I ordered the 4 cheese pasta bake with a side of sautéed spinach at the Tin Front Cafe. where I sat at the old Chioda’s bar.  The restaurant is vegetarian.  A lovely Spring mix salad with balsamic dressing and asiago cheese shavings, a slice of crusty bread.

Yum.  I heard about the up and coming new restaurants coming to the avenue in Homestead.  Judith showed me the special honor in the Pittsburgh Magazine. Her son, Daniel Valentine, was recognized for his work to rebuild  and revitalize Homestead and was chosen as a winner in the Forty Under Forty awards.

“Winners were chosen based on their passion, commitment, visibility, diversity and overall impact on the region.”  

Congratulations Daniel!

Then after dinner I shopped in the adjacent Annex Cookery which is the most beautiful store.  (Smidge of Just a Smidgen blog would love it!) 

You might remember I blogged a visit to both places when Laura visited Pittsburgh.

Supporting independents!  Scroll down and see the specials on USA Pans- Bakeware manufactured in Ambridge PA!

Buy three (any shape) and get a free jelly roll pan. (I love jelly roll.)   Everyone needs a new cookie sheet!

I can’t say what I bought as that would be a spoiler.  You can call Judith 1-800-862-6639 and she’ll ship out in time for the holidays.

All- Clad is manufactured in Canonsburg PA, just down the road from Pittsburgh.

Judith has a Holiday Special on an All-Clad 3 quart lidded saute pan for just 99$!  WOW!   I love cooking with my All-Clad pans.

This is the store where I bought my Nespresso machine  before the display was so high speed.

I hear George Clooney is advertising them  on TV in France, oui?

Check out the elegant and classy  Museum of Modern Art flower vase.    Understated and stunning.

Love the quirky clocks!  A 3 cup steamed pudding mold. The Twoolies and the Riviera Bags are one of a kind gifts.

Shop YOUR Independent Store today.   Now to gift wrap everything………………..


Annex Cookery STore in Homestead

3 qt all clad saute pan

Glassware and soap

MOMA vase
MOMA vase







Riviera Bag


Espresso Beans covered in chocolate to see you through the holidays
Espresso Beans covered in chocolate to see you through the holidays


Bodum teapots





Especially for Rufus

After school on Wednesday, I went down to Annex Cookery and the Tin Front Cafe.  I was in the market for a new espresso maker.   I ordered a lunch portion of their four cheese macaroni and a mixed greens salad with balsamic and asiago cheese shavings on top. And what do you know?  As I sat there, I saw the infused vodka on the glass shelf and thought of Blogger Rufus’ Food and Spirits Guide. (AKA Greg)  and here is the wild part- his post today is about Pepper Infused VODKA!

 Horseradish Vodka? (they use it for Bloody Marys) Ellie explained how they make it.

I knew he would not care for the Apple Raisin Infused Rum  (he detests raisins as I’ve read his wife Katherine’s writings about that topic)  but I just thought the line of glass bottles filled with colored spirits and the labels would be of special interest to him.

Laura and I Went to the Annex Cookery and Tin Front Café- Homestead, PA

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A full weekend of family and happy times. Laura drove in from Columbus and met me at Clarissa’s Boutique at 3:30, ( they close at 4 on Saturday) tried on and picked up her bridal veil and headpiece. I’d driven down from Uncle Frank’s and Aunt Linda’s in West Mifflin on the way to Carson Street and saw the Annex Cookery Store looking inviting. So after we got the veil, we drove back along the Monongahela River to Homestead to check out the Annex Cookery, a cool store that used to be almost behind our first house (1989) in Pittsburgh on Walnut Street years ago. The Tin Front Café (all veg, beautiful bread and local resources) with a wonderful back patio. Judith Tener gave us a nice tour of the cafe. A great place to meet friends and eat, then shop in the adjacent Annex Cookery. Laura and I bought a couple of Joseph Joseph kitchenware items (there is a whole line in the store) and made a wish list for more. Like the triangular olive dish with the holes leading to a circular bowl underneath where partygoers stash the olive pits they never know what to do with after they eat the olive! A square colander that would fit in a sink’s corner perfectly, and all these utensils where the spoon bowl or spatula head doesn’t touch the counter or stove top when it is at rest. They call it Elevate Slotted Spoon or Elevate Ladle- How smart is that? Those Joseph brothers have created a lot of colorful and useful kitchen ware. “Joseph Joseph is now internationally recognized for producing some of the most stylish and technically innovative products available.

I bought a Riviera Bag and it was hard to choose between sizes/colors but you know how I am about the Red White and Blue. Didn’t I just tell everyone don’t buy me anymore Red White and Blue items. Well, it looked like something the kids would think funny when I travel to visit. Of course, I’m not going to look like Julia Roberts carrying her Riviera Bag in Eat Pray Love but the bag is going to be able to hold knitting and whatever else I need to take to the Riviera, I mean Ohio.

And if you ever spent a rowdy evening raising a beer stein and cheering the Steelers underneath the Maidenform, Bali and or Warner’s assorted brassieres hanging at Chiodo’s Tavern (formerly at the end of the Homestead Highlevel Bridge) you can see the bar(without bras) in all its stunning beauty of wood and mirrors and glass right here! Now a Walgreen’s is in Chiodo’s location. 🙁

Get thee to Homestead and eat brunch or “Butternut bisque with coconut milk and basil $3.75 Four bean chili with cheddar and cilantro $3.95 Black bean hummus with sliced cucumber and warm pita $7.95 Spinach salad with apple, gorgonzola, walnuts and pickled beet $7.95 Hot tamale with black beans…” (menu sample taken from their website) Tin Front Café and shop in the unique store with wonderful kitchen and cookware and jazzy aprons and tableware at the Annex Cookery- There are write ups and reviews galore, raving about the renovations, the store AND the café. Click here for one by Patricia Lowry.

Homestead is happening!

A return visit to the Tin Front Cafe 6/15/11-  Joan and I ate a delicious lunch.  I had Grilled Cheddar and Apple sandwich with mixed greens on the side with a touch of balsamic dressing and lovely parings of sharp Italian cheese.  Joan had the spicy spinach quesadilla.  A couple of iced teas and a lot of fun.  Ellie brought out “Happy Beans” with our check- Chocolate covered coffee beans.

(And if you’re following Keep or Pitch there is a shot of the Yard Sale Leftovers at St. Raf’s Gym.)