During a week when Pittsburghers raised our flags to celebrate our Pirates’ much-awaited entre into the playoffs, a group of local social media aficionados met over dinner and drinks to raise funds for The Gay and Lesbian Community Center (GLCC) of Pittsburgh.
The event was PghTweetUp, a way to make real-life connections with the folks we talk to online. Our venue was Verde Mexican Kitchen and Cantina, located at 5491 Penn Avenue. I believe it’s technically in Garfield but walk a few steps in either direction and you’re in East Liberty or Friendship.
Anyway, I am all about trying new (to me) restaurants and hanging with my tweeps, especially when a good cause is involved. Last night, Verde donated 10% of all food sales to the GLCC.
I’m a straight ally volunteering on the GLCC’s Development Committee because they are truly doing some good work for all members of Pittsburgh’s LGBTQA community. That includes youth (including many who are homeless), adults who are seeking social activities that don’t involve the bar scene, and family and friends who need support and resources.
We have some exciting things in the works and I’ll be talking more about them on the blog as they come into fruition.You can also check out the GLCC’s website for the most up-to-date information about programs, services, and events.
In the meantime, last night’s event was all about good conversation and good food. Our table certainly lived up to that! Most of our conversation centered around the upcoming Podcamp Pittsburgh event (October 5!) and – here’s a shocker – social media talk.
With a few opinions about Verde’s new drink, the Sunset Margarita, too.
(It’s slightly bigger than that. You can thank my camera phone for the shotglass version.)
I didn’t partake of the margaritas, but those who did pronounced them very good.
And very strong.
Onto the appetizers and dinner.
What I did indulge in (heavily) was Verde’s guacamole, which was excellent. I’m a bit of a guac snob. For me, it needs to be a particular consistency – not too chunky and not too smooth – and more on the milder side of life.
I could have eaten this straight.
As it was, we had a round for our portion of the table and then I ordered another as a side with my dinner. I was tempted to get ANOTHER order as take-out order to serve as my lunch today. (When I came home from a morning appointment famished, I was regretting not doing so, believe you me).
At $9.00, the guac is pricey. But so good. It reminded me of my days of working in Norristown and walking to a small Mexican restaurant to buy guacamole as an energy-booster during the afternoon. That stuff was good; this was even better.
I’ve been experimenting with a gluten-free diet over the past few weeks (I’m pleased with the initial results) and I was happy to see that Verde had several gluten free options on their menu, including their mahi-mahi tacos. I love fish tacos, which happens to be something the rest of my family does not enjoy, so it’s usually my dish of choice when dining out Mexican style.
That’s a citrus salsa on the side, which I didn’t try because I need to limit citrus. (I sound like a freakin’ octogenarian, don’t I?) But these three fish tacos were very good. At Verde, you can choose corn or flour tortillas. (The corn are gluten free.)
All in all, it was a fun night with friends – and hopefully, connecting more people with the work of the GLCC of Pittsburgh. Those attending the TweetUp were encouraged to bring donations of coffee, tea, or hot chocolate for the GLCC. One of the reasons why goes back to the reason why we do the TweetUps in the first place.
Just like the TweetUp was about connecting, so is the GLCC. Whether that happens on the phone line (412-422-0114) from someone looking for support or someone dropping by the center in person who needs a friend to listen. The GLCC provides a safe and welcoming place for everyone. And with the fall and winter months settling in here in the ‘Burgh, it would be nice to do that over a cup of coffee or tea – or to offer someone a cuppa something to warm up from the cold.
It’s even nicer to be able to count on friends in the community to help out – whether they’re a restaurant like Verde hosting a great fundraiser, a group of socially-minded (in every sense of the word) folks coming together to do good things, or a place that keeps its doors open for everyone.