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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Tuesday, March 28

Gapers Block

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Carly / November 10, 2004 2:23 PM

Pie? I hate to be lame, but I'm going to say Baker's Square.

Brenda / November 10, 2004 2:23 PM

Not touchin' that one with a 10-foot pole.

(hehe... she said "pole")

Ken / November 10, 2004 2:26 PM

Um, besides my grandma's house?

Carrie / November 10, 2004 2:31 PM

Carly, I'm so glad that you said Baker's Square first. I agree. What is it? The peanut butter cup one- mmmmm. dreamy.

Thurston / November 10, 2004 2:32 PM

About a year ago I attended a miserable work function at a Bulls game at the United Center (needless to say, the Bulls lost). A dessert cart came to the skybox, and I selected a piece of key lime pie, and it was wonderful. It was the real deal, i.e., not green. Anyone who finds themselves in a skybox at the United Center should indulge.

dan / November 10, 2004 2:34 PM

Actually, Whole Foods has really great pies. Their strawberry shortcakes are incredibly good too.

miss ellen / November 10, 2004 2:35 PM

that dessert cart rocks! we were up in a skybox for the beastie boys last week, but didn't try any pie. the chocolate cake and caramel apple with nuts & chocolate were great, though.

as for pie, i agree, something about bakers square. the triple berry a la mode - wowsa!

Benjy / November 10, 2004 3:00 PM

The best key line pie is at Joe's Stone Crab. But that's more of a summer pie.

I used to love the apple pie ala mode at Bub City Crab Shack back in the day.

While not exactly apple pie, Maggiano's Warm Apple Crostada tastes like one and is amazing!

Andrew / November 10, 2004 3:09 PM

Seems good pie is hard to find. Ann Sather's has pretty good ones, and they're actually home, er, restaurant-made, as opposed to truck-delivered.

jenny / November 10, 2004 3:43 PM

Pie? My house, on a good pie day.

Maggie / November 10, 2004 5:01 PM

Re: the United Center dessert cart, I interned with the Bulls one summer and we would get to try out the food for the suites every day - it was amazing. Turtle cheesecake, white chocolate mousse in chocolate cups, some concoctions that I had no clue what they were, they were just yummy. If you ever go to a suite at the UC, save room for dessert. You will not be disappointed.

Sorry, I don't know any good pie places.

Lacey / November 10, 2004 5:41 PM

I'm not sure about pie, but Swedish Bakery has some tasty cookies. Random, sorry.

audrey / November 10, 2004 7:41 PM

We really like the Sweet Potato Pecan Pie at Pappadeaux's (Arlington Heights and Westmont).

Why does it seem like all the good pies are at chain restaurants? Doesn't that seem antithetical to the idea of homemade pie?

Tom / November 11, 2004 6:12 AM

The best pecan pie is at the Conch Restaurant in Key West........ best locally is at the Chicago Sweet Connection on the NW's a bakery supplier for a lot of restaurants (Pappadeaux, Cy's, Pete Millers, Mortons,Lawry's, etc)

Shasta MacNasty / November 11, 2004 7:21 AM

Forget the pie. Go to the Cheesecake Factory for a slice of pumpkin cheesecake. Which reminds me, I should order a whole one for the holidays!

Shylo / November 11, 2004 9:23 AM

Costco. Seriously. They have a top-notch bakery. I've purchased a pecan pie from Costco several years in a row. Toothsome, decadent. And the bakery is next to the booze.

Benjy / November 11, 2004 9:33 AM

Yeah, I second CostCo pies. Their apple and peach ones are pretty damn good. And huge. And cheap.

vit / November 11, 2004 10:00 AM

The ones my sister makes.

Dorothy / November 11, 2004 10:12 AM

I love the brown bag pies at Long Grove Apple Haus in Long Grove, IL. Pricey, but good. But if I was looking for a quick fix, I would go to good old Poppin' Fresh.

poppin fresh / November 11, 2004 10:26 AM

poppin fresh!!
that name has always been slightly disturbing to me. it doesn't make any sense!

(i never hear anyone but my mom refer to baker's square by its old name)

that's what happened right? baker's square used to be poppin fresh? that's what i've always assumed.

Eamon / November 11, 2004 10:33 AM

I hate pie. Hate it.

Andrew / November 11, 2004 10:44 AM

Poopin Fresh indeed turned into Bakers Square. I'm guessing the name change was required when Pillsbury sold the chain.

Naz / November 11, 2004 10:45 AM

This is sort of the weird thing about it - I can't think of a good place to find pie (thus the posting of this question) that isn't from a chain restaurant. During the holidays those lines going out the door at Baker's Square are pretty intense.

A few nights ago, the girl and I were thinking about getting a nice warm slice of pie with ice cream or whatnot somewhere and we couldn't think of a good place that had good pie in the city. I mean there's diners and there are cafes and whatnot but no place that was known for pie.

I was hoping (and there have been some decent suggestions here) for some secret little pie spot.

amyc / November 11, 2004 10:57 AM

Achatz four-berry pie (with crumbly topping) is a great pie. It's from a farm in Michigan, carried locally by Whole Foods, and always a hit at parties.

And while not pie exactly, Taste of Heaven and Bittersweet are nice local joints that make delicious cakes, bread puddings, and other tasty sweets.

Alex G / November 11, 2004 11:08 AM

Sweet Mandy B's on Webster has some great pies. Also Bennison's Bakery in Evanston makes a great brown bag apple pie. Both also have a fantastic selection of other delights.

If you want some legendary pie, Crane's in Fennville, Mich., is hard to beat. You can even have them shipped (great for the holidays, just look for them on Google). Further away, the Norkse Nook in Northern Wisconsin and Betty's Pies on Minnesota's North Shore are both beyond heavenly.

lynn / November 11, 2004 11:13 AM

I'm not much of a pie person (or cheesecake person), either. I do *love* the tarts at Bittersweet, though. My god. Bittersweet....yes. Good espresso, too.

jenny / November 11, 2004 11:21 AM

Actually, you know where they make REALLY good, NON-CHAIN pie? The Medici on 57th in Hyde Park. Gracie and her boys, who arrive at, like 3am every day to make all the pastries, make an apple pie that is TO DIE FOR, which they'll heat up (no microwave) and serve a la mode, if you ask. They also do a very nice pecan pie, and a mean carrot cake.

If you're ever in Maine, go to Spurwink Country Kitchen in Scarborough, near Portland, for fabulous pie. Maine, just about every diner you visit makes their pies from scratch, daily...but SCK is where I worked, and will always be my favorite. They do strawberry rhubarb, peach blueberry, plus all the traditionals (lemon merengue, coconut cream, chocolate cream, blueberry, apple, pumpkin, pecan). God, now I'm getting homesick...

eep / November 11, 2004 11:45 AM

I'll second amyc on A Taste of Heaven. Sometimes they do have pies. (It's on Clark, a few blocks north of Foster on the East side of the street.)

Gladys / November 11, 2004 1:32 PM

I second Bennison's Bakery in Evanston. They've got a great pumpkin pie that one can easily consume for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

trachea / November 11, 2004 2:16 PM


Try Humboldt Pie on W. Augusta. They just opened, and boy do they have pies!!!!

daruma / November 11, 2004 3:29 PM

The other day I was at HUE Hilary's Urban Eatery on Division, and while I didn't order pie, I saw a really nice one come out of the kitchen looking very home-madey and good.

Anne / November 11, 2004 4:57 PM

Years ago I met an Amish family and was offered a slice of cherry pie. It was terrible, which really surprised me--you'd think the Amish would know their pie. Maybe that's just what they feed the English, I don't know. Or maybe I should stop making cultural assumptions.

I'm more of a cake girl anyway. But I concur with Jenny on the Medici.

Lacey / November 11, 2004 5:25 PM

It just occurred to me, but Sweet Thang on North has lots of tasty items AND it has atmosphere. I haven't been there in a while though so I'm not sure of their stock of pie, but they are definitely a cute sit down and have dessert kind of place.

Lyle / November 11, 2004 11:09 PM

Physical Grafitti in Hanover Park makes a great "drop down" custard pie.

paul / November 12, 2004 6:50 AM

And another vote for Bennison's. While you're in Evanston, Prairie Moon does a decent Key Lime Martini. It tastes just like the pie.

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