Tram’s is not the cleanest looking place. In fact, it’s dingy. The years of consecutive Best Restaurant plates appear to have never been dusted. 2011 still looks pretty clean though.
Tram’s is small. The tables are really close to each other. It often seems like you’re dining with complete strangers.
The one-armed proprietor, I’ll call him “Tram,” has his own personal version of friendly, akin to Seinfeld’s Soup Nazi.
Order quickly and clearly and maybe you’ll get what you wanted. Regardless of accuracy, it’s always delicious. I recommend the Chicken Pho and Vegetarian Split Rice (which came with every kind of meat the last time I ordered it). Jess is faithful to the Beef Fried Rice and Egg Rolls. The egg rolls are unique to Tram’s, brown and crispy.
Tram’s Kitchen is BYOB. If you’re bringing wine, it’s easiest to supply your own corkscrew. If you prefer to drink your wine out of glasses bring those too, or you’ll be sipping your 1986 Margaux out of plastic juice cups.
And here’s something very important – Bring cash. Tram’s doesn’t accept anything else for payment, although I’ve never tried to barter with them. Hmm. Anyway, they recently installed an ATM in the already cramped vestibule, apparently catering to those forgetful enough to arrive with only plastic in their wallet. I suppose you could call that customer service.
They also do a bustling carryout business. Rumor has it Tram speaks perfect English when he answers the telephone, but you didn’t see that here.
4050 Penn Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15224
By the way, if you’re wondering how to pronounce “pho,” there’s a good explanation here.