Re:My Year in Roadfood (2012)
Thu, 01/17/13 8:32 PM
As usual, my list of best pies are the strongest of any of the lists. So strong that to name only 10 would be an injustice; there was too much great pie eaten in 2012. Here are pies 20-11 and I will complete the list tomorrow. Best Pies 20-11 20) Bananas in Pajamas Pie - Pie Bird (Raleigh, NC) Pie Bird offers some of the most creative and interesting pies anywhere, including one simply called crack pie. But it was the bananas in pajamas that won our hearts. This has an oreo crust, tiny slices of bananas, white chocolate, hazelnut ganache, whipped cream and cocoa powder. Very complicated and very good! 19) Coconut Cream - Stoby's Restaurant (Russellville, AR) It comes as no surprise that Arkansas, maybe the top state in the nation for pie, is well represented on this list. We came to Stoby's for a chance to eat possum pie, but Cousin Johnny's coconut cream stole the show. 18) Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Pie - Hammett House (Claremore, OK) A big thanks to Roadfooder Howard Baratz for taking Cousin Johnny and I to this Oklahoma pie palace. The three of us split four slices of pie, with not a loser in the bunch. Unlike most peanut butter pies, this vertically impressive version wasn't overly rich or cloyingly sweet. Howard and Johnny named it the best of the four, but since this is my list, I get to place it here. 17) Chess Pie - Sylvan Park (Nashville, TN) A lousy photo of a great slice of pie. Sylvan Park makes, for me, the gold standard chess pie. 16) Chocolate Pie - Pope's Cafe (Shelbyville, TN) Pope's Cafe has had some up and downs in the last few years, but based on the excellent pies ChiTownDiner and I sampled last February, they are in an upswing! We caught them at the perfect time as they were soon to close and our slices of pie was really a 1/4 pie! 15) Blackberry Cream - The Upper Crust (Kansas City,MO) Located in the basement of an upscale kitchenware store, this place sells some really beautiful pies. TTM, Cousin Johnny and I all selected a mini-pie and as usual, Cousin Johnny's choice was the clear winner. I thought this would be a light pie by the name, but the sweet, fresh blackberries were in a wonderful, thick custard. 14) Pumpkin Pie - Nick's Kitchen (Huntington, IN) Our visit to Nick's was during Fall, which was just the right time for pumpkin pie. We loved the whipped, rugged texture and perfect blend of spices. This was the best pumpkin pie I have ever had. 13) Banana Cream Pie - The Apple Pan (Los Angeles, CA) You would think with a name like Apple Pan, that the apple pie would be the featured dessert, but it is the banana cream pie that stars here. Real whipped topping, neatly stacked rows of fresh bananas and a wonderfully flaky crust. 12) Cherry Vanilla Pie - Orlean Market (Orlean, VA) Orlean Market is small town general store that makes fine sandwiches, salads and chili. We sampled a trio of desserts, including hummingbird cake and peach mango pie, but the buttery, flaky crust of the cherry vanilla pie was the big hit. 11) Black Cap Pie - Homemade Cafe (Pepin, WI) In a case of Roadfood serendipity, I had just left the great Stockholm Pie Company to find a sign out front of Homemade Cafe advertising black cap pie. Who could say no to that? I grabbed a slice to go and was rewarded with deliciously sweet black raspberries on top of a light cream cheese filling. The Top Ten pies tomorrow.....
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