Pittsburgh Pickle Co. nails the flavor of its chief product by balancing the sugar-salt ratio, says co-owner John Patterson. He and his brothers Will Patterson and Joe Robl own The BeerHive, where they’d served their own pickles for years. The trio got serious about pickle production after regulars nudged them. The result: a line of sweet-and-salty “Pittsburgh-style” pickles.

“The pickles are like Pittsburghers — a majority of time, we’re sweet people,” says John, who notes that roughly 2,000 cucumbers go into each 500-jar batch.

Order plain or deep-fried spears at The BeerHive, or pick up a jar at a local market.

[2117 Penn Ave., Strip District; pittsburghpickle.com; photo by Laura Petrilla]