Cheryl Perry and Felipa Lopez opened Pie Corps last October at 77 Driggs Avenue with two missions in mind—to bring back the popularity of the savory pie, and to debunk the idea that pie must always be unhealthy.
Perry and Lopez remember growing up at a time when savory pies were a far more popular dinner choice than they are now. “We’re starting to read labels more and question where our food comes from. Pies went from being made on the farm, to being made in factories with preservatives, and it turned into maybe something that we didn’t really want to eat,” Perry says. She cites people’s growing concern about where their food comes from, and pie’s newfound popularity, as motivators for Pie Corps’ inception. “We’re bringing it back to wholesome pies, with ten ingredients, and you can identify each one of them.” For a pie shop looking to dazzle people who care about handmade food and natural ingredients, Lopez noted that there was no better place to go than Greenpoint, right beside McGolrick Park. Murmurings about pie being the new cupcake could be heard in the food media last summer, and the proliferation of pie shops across Brooklyn helped to fuel the fire.
But the Pie Corps team doesn’t believe cupcakes are going anywhere, referring to them as “the black dress” of the dessert world. However, they do credit the cupcake with helping to broaden the popularity of single serving desserts, paving the way for the pie-splosion. The Pie Corps team had been catering, and selling pies at farmer’s markets, for a year before opening a storefront to “bring pie to the people.” Savory offerings like their Chicken Pot, Smoked Ham White Cheddar and Green Onion, and Mac & Cheese pies are the team’s passion, as well as big sellers. Eventually, though, the two decided to make room for sweet pies on their menu.
Thus far, the make-or-break feat for Brooklyn’s pie shops has been the ability to offer a “signature flavor” that gets the borough talking. At Pie Corps, nearly every flavor is unique enough to be described as signature. Flavors like Minty Lime, and Rosemary Apple Cobbler, are unique to Pie Corps, but the team’s Honey Lavender Pie has differentiated itself as the most unique and beloved of the pack. Whether or not pie stays in vogue in the coming years should be of no concern to Pie Corps, where pie is merely a medium through which Lopez and Perry make delicious discoveries and break culinary convention.
Pie Corps welcomed the WG into their store with open arms, allowing us to sample some of their premier slices. Here are the results.
The bruleed marshmallow topping alone is enough to make this slice worth tasting. Pie Corps takes a blow torch to the thin layer of marshmallow atop this slice, giving the rich chocolate filling a light and sticky offset.
As delicious as rosemary can be, we don’t always want to bite into a piece of it. However, a hint of rosemary goes a long way to give depth to a classic piece of apple pie. That’s why Pie Corps infuses a good dollop of caramel with rosemary and adds it to this perfectly executed apple pie. It features crisp yet soft apples atop a nice, thick crust that, when soaked with apple goo, will have you looking for excuses to go to Greenpoint.
This signature slice is unlike any piece of pie you’ll find in Brooklyn and is made of a sweet and creamy honey custard infused with lavender and cream. It may sound simple, but the taste is anything but.
Fallen Chocolate Tort
How there is no flour in this flourless chocolate cake is beyond understanding. This chocolate cake on a pie crust is so light you almost expect it to start deflating on your tongue.
Chocolate Bourbon Pecan
Similar to a derby pie, this slice is a cookie-dough lovers dream—that is, as long as they can hold their liquor. This nice helping of half-baked cookie is well-soaked with bourbon atop a graham cracker crust. Pie Corps has a well-guarded secret of how they make their graham cracker so soft and crumbly; you have to take their “Pie Crust Intensive” class to discover it.
Minty Key Lime
A proper piece of key lime pie must have a certain hue of green. It’s not the color of a lime rind, but of a dead glow stick. This mint-infused lime custard is the most tart of any key lime pie in Brooklyn, with a bite that’s not to be missed.