Pie scenes during my trip to New York City were plentiful and I would be remiss if I didn’t report on them.
My stay kicked off by having dinner with my fabulous literary agent, Deidre Knight, who I hadn’t yet met in person. Obviously our first meeting — over a delicious meal in SoHo at The Dutch — was a huge success. Why? For one, it ended with pie! Pictured is the Buttermilk Pie with a gingersnap crust and the Grapple Pie, a combo of apples and grapes. The Dutch’s pie was not blue-ribbon-worthy (they were complicating something that should be respected for its simplicity) but still it was encouraging to see that NYC is embracing this quintessential comfort food.
I made a point to walk everywhere, rain or shine. On a blustery day, making my way back from Wall Street to the West Village, I veered through TriBeCa and passed Bubby’s. I had heard of this “pie shop” but from the outside it looked like a busy semi-upscale restaurant. So I kept walking. One block later, I couldn’t shake the notion that in spite of appearances this could be the place New Yorkers flock for pie, so I turned around, walked in the door, followed my pie radar, and found it! Yes, there was pie!
Bubby’s also sells cookbooks with their pie recipes.
And, as a nice touch, they offer a park bench outside on which to sit and admire a cow while you’re digesting your meatloaf, mac and cheese, and peanut butter chocolate pie. (Who could walk immediately after that kind of meal?!)
On another trek across town, from the West Village to Midtown, I stumbled upon New York Cakes and Bakery Supply in Chelsea. Pie baker’s dream store or nightmare? I can’t say for sure. All I know is that I was overwhelmed by…
…A whole wall of cookie cutters (good for cutting cute pie crust shapes)
…And a million rolling pins of all shapes and sizes.
I picked out a few items to buy, decided I should come back later when I had more time, returned my items to the shelves and racks, and then, naturally, never made it back. Oh well. There’s always mail order.
And then, walking through La Guardia Airport as I went to take my flight back to Iowa, I saw this pie book prominently displayed in a souvenir shop. The book was a compilation of recipes from over 80 chefs, created by a New York photographer, and therefore qualified as a memento of the Big Apple. Hey, whatever. Works for me.
So even in a mega-size city full of noise, chaos, and competition, all around me there were signs of pie. And that made me feel right at home.