Born in the thick of the steel mill era amidst the cultural revolution in the 1960s, Mary was raised in the South Hills of Pittsburgh and spent much of her time as a teenager biking around Pittsburgh neighborhoods.
As a college graduate, she lived with her aunt, a cook notorious in the family for using copious amounts of butter and rum in baking, and it was then that Mary discovered her love of cooking, baking, and talking with whoever was sitting in her kitchen.
She feels most at home when her house is filled with friends and family, crowded around her kitchen island, nibbling, or “grazing” as she and her family affectionately refer to it, and trading stories that sometimes elevate to screams of laughter. “Food always tastes better with a story,” she says.
Mary raised her three children with her husband Doug in the West Hills of Pittsburgh. “My kids have all lived in different areas of the country at different times,” she says. “One of my favorite things as they have aged into adults is when they bring their friends from other cities here for a weekend, and I get to take the newcomers around the city and show them the best places to eat.”
After spending eighteen years working in early childhood, Mary decided to make this hobby something more permanent, sharing her love for the city, its people, and most importantly its food with newcomers and locals. Mary’s favorite Pittsburgh landmark is the statue of Fred Rogers on the North Shore, and she prides herself on her ability to park anywhere.
“Try your best to make goodness attractive. That’s one of the toughest assignments you’ll ever be given.”