Photo courtesy Broadway Brunch WTAE's Elena LaQuatra with Broadway Brunch Owner R.J. Carrabbia and daughter Nora during a May 20 broadcast.
By Jamie Wiggan
Diners in Stowe, McKees Rocks and Coraopolis have captured the airwaves in recent weeks, as two local TV stations have traveled west of the city in search of the region’s best breakfast spots.
Love Rocks Cafe in McKees Rocks and Tootstie’s Diner in Coraopolis were picked up in KDKA’s Diner Week (May 10-15), while Broadway Brunch in Stowe featured in the final installment of WTAE’s five-part Best Breakfast in the ‘Burgh series on May 20.
“When you open up a restaurant, you think about making it to the next day, maybe the next year, but you don’t think about making it on TV,” said R.J. Carrabbia, Broadway Brunch owner. “It’s been a very humbling experience.”
Taking her cues from viewer call-ins, WTAE’s Elena LaQuatra visited five Pittsburgh-area restaurants for several weeks throughout April and May. She said Carrabbia’s collection of fifties-era memorabilia, many items which have local ties, was what most captured her attention at the Stowe diner.
“The whole vibe when you come in — there’s so much to look at,” she said. “There’s a story behind them.”
Meanwhile, KDKA’s Mikey Wood stopped in at two area restaurants for a similar production by the rival station.
Her interview with Tootsie’s owner Coleen Baldwin honed in on the acclaimed specials served up by Baldwin’s mother Deloris Melani, affectionately known as Tootsie.
At Love Rocks Café, owner Jackie Page described her journey into the food business and talked about her restaurant’s unique positioning inside a community center with a library, art gallery and a host of other facilities.