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Italian classics, breakfast are big draws at Oakmont restaurant

Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2009
 

More than two decades ago, Rose and Bill Henry found what they thought was the perfect space to open a pizza shop in Oakmont.

But their landlord had other ideas.

He told them Oakmont needed a full-service restaurant that offered breakfast as and a full lunch and dinner menu.

In 1984, they opened What's Cooking at Casey's at the corner of Allegheny River Boulevard and Maryland Avenue. Twenty-five years later, Rose Henry and her son, Casey Tolerico, still are running this family-friendly community resource.

The menu is filled with Italian classics -- pizza, strombolis and hoagies -- as well as traditional entrees that include chicken saltimbocca ($16.95), eggplant parmigiana ($13.95) and traditional or vegetable lasagna ($14.95).

Those in the mood for something else will find the menu extends to non-Italian choices such as fresh wild-caught salmon ($16.95), pulled-pork barbecue sandwich ($8.95) and a hamburger ($5.50) that's made with hand-pressed Black Angus ground beef.

"We make everything from scratch," Henry says.

That includes the dough, sauce and meatballs that are made daily in the kitchen, along with the pies, croutons and salad dressings.

The tin ceiling, checkered wallpaper and wooden window blinds make the restaurant feel cozy and home-like. There's an abundance of vintage photos of Oakmont adorning the walls, and arrangements of painted toleware and pewter dishes decorating the ledge that runs along the pine booths.

Breakfast is a big draw, Henry says. It's especially popular with late risers, who can order from the breakfast menu until 11 a.m. Mondays through Fridays and until 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

Eggs Benedict ($8.15) is the most popular breakfast item. "People come just for that," she says. "Also our omelets ($6.75-$6.95), because they are not skimpy."

To keep big breakfast crowds happy, servers put a pot of coffee on each table.

Two other features that should keep customers happy are a selection of homemade Italian desserts, such as tiramisu ($3.95) and zabaglione ($4.50), and the house beverage policy. You are welcome to bring your own alcoholic beverage, and there is no corkage fee.

Additional Information:

What's Cooking at Casey's

Location: 608 Allegheny River Blvd., Oakmont

Hours: 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 8 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sundays

Details: 412-826-1400 or Web site

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