|Food type||North American cuisine sandwich shop|
(original Strip District location)
Primanti Brothers (Pittsburgh English: [pɚˈmæːni], Standard English: [pɹɪˈmænti] or [pɹɪˈmɑnti]) is a chain of sandwich shops, founded in 1933. Locations are throughout Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and its suburbs, with an additional three locations in the Fort Lauderdale, Florida area. Its signature items are its sandwiches, which consist of grilled meat, an Italian dressing-based coleslaw, tomato slices, and French fries between two pieces of Italian bread.
The original shop is located in Pittsburgh's Strip District, a narrow strip of land where the warehouses and produce yards are located. In the 1930s, the Strip was a very busy place. Truckers delivered their goods in the middle of the night and had to get back on the road quickly. So Primanti's designed their sandwich to be eaten with one hand, while the driver drove the truck with the other. By combining the sides with the sandwich, a Pittsburgh staple was born. Of course, the restaurant offers a slightly humorous take on it, offering the explanation that the Primanti brothers simply forgot the plates and forks one day. According to the restaurant, Joe Primanti, born in suburban Wilmerding, Pennsylvania, invented the sandwich during the Great Depression. His brothers, Dick and Stanley, later joined him. The Primantis opened their hole-in-the-wall restaurant at Smallman Street and 18th Street in the Strip District and served the late-night and early-morning workers who were unloading fish, fruits, and vegetables.
It has also been a tradition for the late night crowd to go to Primanti's in the Strip District after the bars have closed, due to their hours of operation (at one time they were one of the few establishments open after 2 A.M.). Crowds line up with standing room only; however, the cooks prepare the sandwiches at a very fast pace and keep the crowd moving without writing down any order on paper.
The restaurant has evolved to become a casual neighborhood restaurant with 16 Pittsburgh locations, including those found in the city's major sports venues PNC Park, Heinz Field, and the Consol Energy Center. An ESPN.com rating of PNC Park mentioned that "the best [concession] item is the famous Primanti Brothers sandwich, a Pittsburgh institution", and granted this "signature concession item" an exuberant score of "5+++" (out of 5). This helped PNC Park to achieve its overall #1 ranking in the feature.
Primanti Brothers has expanded beyond the Pittsburgh market. Three locations are in the Fort Lauderdale, Florida area, and a 2010 location opened just outside Pittsburgh's metro area near Grove City, Pennsylvania.
Media exposure and notability
The restaurant was featured in an article in the August 2003 edition of National Geographic magazine.
The restaurant was mentioned on the April 21, 2008, episode of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart in an interview with president Barack Obama. Stewart suggested that Obama visit the restaurant for their "great sandwiches", which Stewart had enjoyed as a comedian on the club circuit.
Primanti Brothers made the list of 1,000 Places to See Before You Die in the USA and Canada by Patricia Schultz.
On March 9, 2011, U.S. District Judge David S. Cercone approved a settlement between Primanti Brothers and a customer in response a lawsuit over the content of credit card receipts. In the suit, the plaintiff, Nora Hoxha, claimed that the restaurant's credit card receipts printed all, or if not all, too many digits of a customer's credit card number in violation of the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act. As part of the settlement, the restaurant agreed to provide affected customers with a free menu item and a side item or non-alcoholic drink. The restaurant also agreed to make a donation of $25,000 to the Carnegie Museums and pay up to $62,000 for the plaintiff's attorneys' costs.
- Primanti Brothers, Pittsburgh Restaurant Reviews, About.com.
- "Primanti Bros. - The Real Story". PrimantiBrothers.com. Retrieved 17 December 2010.
- "Locations". PrimantiBrothers.com. Retrieved 12 August 2010.
- Caple, Jim. "Pittsburgh's gem rates the best". ESPN.com. Retrieved 12 January 2010.
- Kadushin, Raphael (August 2003). "15222: Come Hungry". National Geographic: 114–122. Retrieved 2007-08-26.
- "Barack Obama Pt. 2". The Daily Show. Comedy Central. Retrieved 2008-07-26.
- "Travel Briefs: 1,000 more places to see before you die". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. 10 June 2007.
- "Man v. Food in Pittsburgh". Man v. Food. The Travel Channel. Retrieved 2012-01-20.
- "Primanti to provide free sandwiches to settle suit". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 9 March 2011.
- "Yinztagram By Pegula". iTunes Store. Apple Inc. 2012. Archived from the original on December 15, 2012. Retrieved December 13, 2012.