Mission Im-pie-sible

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Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/12 16:14:39
The Engagement Ring Pie!

That pie has had an impact...

Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/12 18:08:01
YES!!!!  That's it!!!    That's impressive that you found that.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/12 18:47:09
L2B, great pictures, great report. This is a true quality Roadfood report, the restaurants and Bakeries were well thought out. In doing so you showed us all the many places to stop going through these areas of the USA.....Thx for taking the time, I know how much time this takes to do what you do.....................pnwc
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/12 23:51:25
Thanks, pnw!  I followed your train trip, too.  What a fantastic journey and fabulous pics.  Taking that trans-Canadian trip has been on my bucket list for years.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/13 18:16:45
It's the next day, and I'm assigned to judge professional pies today.  Here are a few of the entries.
First up, a raisin pie.  Until I came to the National Pie Championships, I don't think I'd ever even tasted a raisin pie.  However, I came away from these events craving them.  This pie had many interesting elements to it--nothing too weird or edgy--all delicious!  The crust was made of oatmeal cookies.

This was also raisin pie, but seemed more like a chocolate pie with raisins, and kind of blurred the category lines.  It was tasty, though!

In the fruit and berry category, quite a voluptuous pie:

This year they had a mini-pie category.  This is a beautiful example, and it won in its category.

A triple chocolate cream pie--not for the faint of heart!

I also ended up judging junior chef and Best of Show for both of those divisions.  Instead of going to watch the awards, however, I drove over to Cocoa Beach to put my feet in the warm Florida ocean.  Ahhhhhh...
Leaving Florida the next day and heading north to visit my sister, I found a place called Southern Image Catering and Eatery in Richmond Hill, GA, and they had a buffet--YES!

Here's the BBQ up close:

And assorted desserts.  (Notice--no pies!!)

I kept going and arrived in Fayetteville, NC, where I stopped at Cape Fear BBQ & Chicken.  I adore North Carolina chopped barbecue, as I spent several years there.  Their's was a classic example, and I was a happy girl.

They also had house-made hush puppies so fresh they fogged up my camera lens.

The flavor of their Brunswick stew was also classic; however, I wish they wouldn't have allowed green beans in there.  I imagine it was part of the frozen vegetable mix they used, but still.  Anyway, no biggie--I was happy to be having it.

Forgive the fast food stop, but the next morning it was Bojangles for biscuits.

And country ham:

Time for a break.  Next stop will be Warrenton, VA, at Frost Diner.
post edited by love2bake - 2013/03/13 18:22:59
ann peeples
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/13 18:23:16
Love Bojangles!
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/14 13:55:02
The strawberry little vixen pie!

With the stems still attached it screams to plunk one of those strawberries off the top. Is that allowed...as a Judge?
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/14 15:38:17
March 14th...Happy Pie Day....at 1:59 PM!!!
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/14 15:44:20
I celebrated Pie Day...
SEVERAL Times so far, and there is still 8+ hours left in the day.

Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/15 02:24:56
My Bride was hungry for pie tonight but didn't realize it was National Pie Day!
Must have been her inner clock!
So I went to the Black Bear Diner and got her one of their Individual Blackberry Pies, i.e. cobblers.
No sense waisting,(spelling correct!) a trip so----I got me one of the Apple ones!
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/15 12:26:05
I read the rules of the contest....gasp!

New Jersey residents are not allowed to participate!


We can have you come judge the parking lot pie category for us. That's where all the fun can happen in 2014.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/15 12:27:27
CC - I'm with you!  Judges are supposed to taste the pies as they were intended to be tasted, and I agree with you 100%--those berries were intended to be plunked off there and popped in the mouth!  Although I didn't see anyone do that, maybe after the judging is done, what happens in the judging room stays in the judging room.
As far as Pie Day is concerned, please let me clarify:  National Pie Day is January 23, and National Pi Day is March 14.  We pie lovers have happily adopted the latter in addition to the original for obvious reasons!  The math people are mostly okay with this.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/15 13:41:27
In Warrenton, VA, visiting my sister, I stopped at Frost Diner.  It's a classic metal diner, and while I don't have any pics of it, there are several on the following page--just scroll down a bit to see them: http://www.choppedonion.com/id133.html
Here's what I had for breakfast:

Accompanied by:

Another visit to Carousel Frozen Treats:

And it's on to Culpeper, VA, a quaint, historic town and home of Knakal's Bakery, recommended by my sister.
Supposedly famous for their doughnuts, I tried a variety of good-looking pastries.  Although I don't recall the name of this pastry, the cake had one of the most tender crumbs I've ever had.
Here's a mini lemon chess pie:

And a custard-filled doughnut:

However, my favorite item here was their cinnamon roll ring, which I unfortunately don't have a photo of, but can definitely recommend!
Fast forwarding a few states and heading to Chicago, I went through Amish country, hoping to find some pies (I hadn't had enough!!)  Seeing folks in buggies is common enough, but bikes were a first for me:

So, excited by the review and pie pics of the Village Inn in Middlebury, IN:
I headed there.  As I reached town, however, the following sign grabbed my attention:

Waahhhhhh!!!  It was only a tease because, guess what--it was Sunday, and they were closed!   So, I suspected the same would be true of the Village Inn, and sadly, it was.  It should've been a no-brainer, but it was also an unfortunate result of my scheduling. 
My consolation prize was a (say this in your best Barry White voice) Choco-Cherry Love blizzard at Dairy Queen, which didn't care what day of the week it was.

So, that was my Sunday school lesson...
I happily made it to Chicago, which I've wanted to visit for years.  Although I only had one full day there, I did at least a little damage.  First up was Johnnie's, in Elmwood Park, thankfully not crowded on a chilly afternoon.

I loved this place!  The lemon ice was spectacular:

And Italian beef, dipped, with sweet peppers--what can I say!

If I'd had more tummy space, I'd have gotten a sausage.  This is a definite drawback to traveling alone.
Next day, in addition to hitting a few of the city highlights like the Willis Tower (I think it used to be Sears), Millenium Park, and the Chicago Art Institute, I stopped at Garrett's Popcorn Shop, where the Chicago mix was outrageous.  Caramel with pecan was also delicious:

Later I went to Gene & Jude's http://www.roadfood.com/R...erview/2284/gene-judes and had some of the best French fries ever:

covering up the dog:

With little time to spare before closing time, I made a beeline for Eli's Cheesecake, another famous Chicago favorite.
Here's what I tried at Eli's.  Salted caramel cheesecake:

Their original "plain" cheesecake:

Mixed berry cheesecake:

And lemon:

I definitely have to go back to Chicago--I hardly made a dent.
post edited by love2bake - 2013/03/15 14:04:38
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/15 13:43:59

I read the rules of the contest....gasp!

New Jersey residents are not allowed to participate!


We can have you come judge the parking lot pie category for us. That's where all the fun can happen in 2014.

Wth!!!  Is that the only state?  Wonder why. 
Absolutely--I love the parking lot pie category.  I'm sure we could recruit a few other RF judges!!
post edited by love2bake - 2013/03/15 14:07:32
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/15 14:17:35
Maybe they think we'd try to bribe the Judges.

Psst...look under my pie plate...before you vote.

Then we can pie toss. I'll win that with my own skillz.

We're not alone. AZ...TN...MD...DC as well.
post edited by CCinNJ - 2013/03/15 14:19:02
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/15 15:32:05
I should never check this thread in the morning.  Those calories jump out from my monitor and attach themselves to me.
For dinner tonight or right now I'd like that Italian sandwich and the lemon chess pie... and cheesecake.
love2bake...  you're travels and choices are so inspiring. 

I'm loving your report!
ann peeples
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/15 19:00:07
Your report is fantastic. You are a real trooper, love2bake, and a fantastic member of this tribe.........
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/16 13:02:13
Haha, CC!!  We should rent one of the villas next door and bake and eat pies.  So, I checked with the American Pie Council, and apparently the restrictions in those states have to do with old gaming rules on the books.  However, even though people can't compete, they can still be judges, volunteers, etc., and get all the pie they could possibly ever want without any of the stress of competing!
Thanks Mar and Ann - Thank you for making me welcome in the tribe!!  I really hope to meet you in the future. Roadfooding would be way more fun then.
Mar - you have so hit on the reason I didn't read trip reports for months.  I was busy dieting off the weight I'd gained from this trip and lots of home cooking/baking experiments, ballpark food, etc., so had to shut out all of that amazing input.  Cooking shows, too--outta my life!  Waahhhhh
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/16 13:51:32
love2bake, Great report and pics....it is a fusion similar to the philosophy of Thai food-sweet, sour, salty, bitter and hot....of course while featuring PIE! Thank you.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/16 14:05:38
Once past Chicago, I'm on the home stretch via I-80. (I hear a collective sigh of relief out there!!)
It's funny, but you can tell when you've left cow country for pig country, and I entered Iowa wanting to find a pork tenderloin sandwich.  Stopped at the Machine Shed in Davenport, so I could also try their famous cinnamon buns.  I must say that this pork tenderloin was not was I was expecting--it was more like fish and chips--batter-and-fried--than a breaded and fried type:

Sorry for the blur:
And a slice of raspberry pie to go:

Here's how big the cinnamon bun was (room key for comparison):

Unfortunately, in the afternoon it wasn't very fresh. :(
My next "significant" stop was in Cheyenne, WY, and what I was not expecting at all was to find soul food there!  Mitchell's BBQ is fairly new on the scene in town, but it already had a following.  I went for the "Tennessee Tango" dinner comprised of a double-decker sandwich and sides:

The sandwich had a layer of BBQ pork and BBQ brisket, separated by a slice of white bread:

Moving along, the next day I stopped for lunch at Grub's Drive In in Rock Springs, WY.  Maybe it used to be a drive-in, but now you just park out front and walk in.  It's mostly counter seating and is popular with the locals.  I went for the Shamrock, which is their standard burger.  

and French fries, which were made fresh in house and spectacular:

I heard they were good with gravy.  Some might not be into it, but I tried it:

And two house-made pies!  Fresh pear:

And rhubarb, still warm, so fell apart when they cut into it.  (This was my favorite.)

Last stop was The Griddle in Winnemucca, NV, where I tried their unique looking house-made cinnamon bun. (The toothpicks in there were to keep the to-go-lid away from the topping.)

and their French toast stuffed with cream cheese and house-made strawberry-rhubarb jam.

I just realized that I neglected to mention my ice cream stop in Oklahoma City at Braum's Ice Cream & Dairy Store, a regional favorite.  Rather than go back to that post, I'll just leave it here as dessert:  German chocolate sundae.

Thanks so much to everyone for your encouragement and sense of humor!  I look forward to meeting up with you whenever we can.  In the meantime, the 2013 National Pie Championships are coming up the last weekend in April.  I won't be driving there this year, but will spend some time on the road between Florida and Virginia.  Bye for now!!
post edited by love2bake - 2013/03/16 14:33:26
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/16 15:03:17
You're leaving?  DON'T!!!
You just killed me with that rhubarb pie.  If I saw that slice, I would have ordered an entire pie to go.
There are some pies that I do like. 
Stay and tell us about San Francisco Bay spots to eat.  Our dinner thread needs you!
Your trip report was spectacular.  Thank you for sharing it with us.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/16 15:37:36
Just an outstanding report!!
Ralph Melton
Double Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/16 22:29:57
A splendid report. Thank you very much.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/17 16:59:45
Thank you for your kind words and observations, Wintahaba.  
Agnes and Ralph - Thank you for the shout out!
Mar - I'm happy to hear you like a few pies! I like a few cakes.  And a lot of doughnuts.  I'm also ashamed to say that I go out to eat more in other people's cities than I do in my own.   Part of it is because I really dislike driving in SF, and the public transportation to many of the places I'm interested in just sucks.  However, I'm going to take this challenge and try to get up there more this year. (It's just 25 miles...pitiful.)  A friend and I did a bakery crawl a year or so ago in the Mission District.  It was a blast--maybe I should look up those pics.
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/17 18:54:42
Do it!  (Great name for a store)
My niece lives in San Francisco.  I've only visited her once, sad to say.
mr chips
Filet Mignon
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/18 05:24:38
A report for the ages. Please come here to portland. We have wonderful pie shops, great seafood and food carts to die for.Thank you so much for sharing it with us.
Filet Mignon
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/18 08:52:47
love2bake, Spectacular Report!  Excellent choices and photos.
I figure Buffetbuster's heart stopped somewhere around page 3.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/18 16:00:39
Thank you, mr chips!  Almost came up last fall--definitely thinking about it this year, and if so, will coordinate with you. 
Thanks, joerogo - and that's such a great way of putting it.  buffetbuster's reports do that to me, too, and make me want to bake, like, 20 pies afterwards. 
Root-Beer Man
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/18 20:04:33
I loved this report! And the pies. Thanks for sharing it with us!
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/20 09:26:06
Thank you, Root-Beer Man!  I'm glad I could share my pie and road trip adventures.
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/20 11:13:19
I hope to see your bakery crawl report!

Snif snif...I smell donuts!
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/21 10:38:23
Haha--it's coming!!  I've uploaded the pics and will create a post soon. 
Junior Burger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/23 18:55:45
love2bake, your fabulous trip report brought this regular reader but confirmed lurker out of her hole.  Had to post to tell you how very much I enjoyed reading it (and drooling on the keyboard a little).  

Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/24 10:08:31
Thank you, crab!  I came late to the forum party, myself, while having drooled over people's trip reports, too.  I'm glad you stuck your toe in the water.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/29 13:01:30
My bad!  I just realized a place I forgot to include on my 2012 trip to FL.
Who'd expect to find soul food in Bakersfield, CA???  Not me, but there it was--J's Place, 2681 Calloway Drive. 
Good, southern style food, and the place was packed out.  FYI, fried catfish served only Fri-Sun.
Smothered pork chops, black-eyed peas, dirty rice, and cornbread:

And caramel cake!

Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/03/29 13:12:06
Thanks L2B! I'm so happy you found it. It looks great and I think my Mother will love it!
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/04/01 20:26:22
Your reports almost make me want to put off Gastric Bypass Surgery.

If I judge it would have to be before surgery so I could REALLY enjoy myself.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
Re:Mission Im-pie-sible 2013/04/02 14:39:03
Oh no!!  I'm glad to know you enjoyed my report, but getting healthy is far more important.  A good alternative to judging is volunteering in any of the myriad roles they have--then you can be a part of the action and sample only the pies you really want to, and none of the ones that aren't your thing.  Think about that possibility for 2014!  There could be an informal Roadfood gig there next year.
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