Exploring the World with an Embry-Riddle International Captain

John Mazur/Correspondent

As an International Airline Pilot, one can get pretty familiar with many world class cities.

Airline crews, in addition to exploring the historical sites and museums, usually find the restaurants and cafes that best represent the local flavor and atmosphere and attitude of the local residents. Since we are on a per diem expense account, we usually find places that are priced where the locals go, not the usually more expensive tourist traps.

Every major city has a well-known special place where airline crews from around the world gather to socialize, compare work and travel conditions and share tales of worldwide exploration and experiences.

Recently, I returned from Rome, Italy, where I met up with fellow crewmembers in that city’s special crew hangout, a cafe by the name of La Botticella. What is really unique about this establishment is its commonly known name among airline crews worldwide.

We know it as the “Steeler Bar!” Yes, right in the central historic area of ancient Rome is a cafe named after the U.S. football team from Pittsburgh, PA, a tavern that celebrates American style football.

Very unusual for any establishment in Europe, there is usually a live or recorded U.S. Pro NFL or Collegiate football game in view on display at all times. Occasionally, there is a European football game, soccer as we call it, being shown if it is of special interest like a championship playoff.

Originally established in 1904, this cafe definitely has an old world atmosphere and charm, except for the football. The Steeler Bar is decorated with professional jerseys and pennants of many U.S. college athletic teams.

Since it is frequented by many airline crews from the U.S. and worldwide, we had to ensure Embry-Riddle is well represented. Giovanni assures that the Embry-Riddle’s pennant will have a premier location for all crews and tourists alike to admire. Next time you’re in Rome or if you know anyone who is going there, make sure they make a point of stopping in the Steeler Bar.

The owner, Giovanni, is friendly and welcoming, and will make sure you are as comfortable as being at home. Oh yes, look for that Embry-Riddle pennant in ancient Rome!