International Pie Day is this Tuesday on 3.14 (geddit?). To celebrate this special day, what are arguably Canberra’s best hand-made pies will be on sale at a special price at the new Pie Day Bakery at 9/18 Whyalla Street Fyshwick. They are selling a limited run of 314 pies and sausage rolls for only half price. That’s good value for a delicious beef mince pie or beef sausage roll (only $3.75 and $3 respectively) made with love and locally grown ingredients.
If you love pies and you live in Canberra you’re probably already familiar with Pie Day and their delicious array of pies that they sell each weekend at the Canberra Regional Farmers Market and Southside Farmers Market, where they regularly sell out of their pies and sausage rolls.
Pie Day includes the same people behind Cuppacumbalong and uses ingredients from that farm such as award-winning fresh free-range eggs, beef, lamb and vegetables. The team from Pie Day recently lost the use of their usual kitchen at Pork Barrell when it closed. Many Pork Barrell fans didn’t realise the kitchen at their favourite restaurant was basically a 24-hour operation that churned out hundreds of tasty pies each night – meeting the high demand for the quintessential Aussie cuisine at Canberra’s local markets and numerous IGAs around town. The good news for Canberra pie fans is the best looking members of that crew are still together and still making pies.
I recently tried one of their steak, bacon and provolone cheese pies and was pleased to find lots of locally-grown veg amongst the meat and cheese. I’ve also had a delicious lamb, thyme, mint and rosemary sausage roll. They’re not the cheapest pies in town but they would have to be amongst the best-tasting, and certainly the best sourced in terms of locally grown produce. When local produce isn’t available they’ll use the next nearest source such as Shoalhaven Mushrooms. They’re making no less than twelve different styles of pie, including four vegetarian options (beetroot, fetta and pistachio/french vegetable with mustard seed/Shoalhaven mushroom, blue cheese, bechamel/pumpkin, coconut and Thai basil).
Anyone familiar with the Canberra food scene is aware it is constantly full of good news and bad news. Recently Canberra pastry connoisseurs suffered from the closure of a few well-patronised local bakeries such as Yarralumla Bakery, Autolyse and Dream Cuisine has moved as well. However, in the commercial food world it’s quite likely that a new phoenix will always (pardon the bakery pun) rise from the ashes of a recent closure.
I was a big fan of Dream Cuisine in Fyshwick and their croissants and macarons and was sad when they closed temporarily but was glad to hear they found another premises in Fyshwick and they’re still selling at local markets. However their old location at 8/19 Whyalla Street is now home to the best of the old Pie Day crew. As well as pies they’re also offering breakfast and lunch from 7am to 2pm and there are plenty of vegetarian options in both the pies and freshly cooked menu.
Pie Day prides itself on being a “Paddock to Pie Enterprise”, using their own pastry, along with meats and vegetables sourced from their own farms. I agree with their own description of “delicate, flaky crust filled with mouth watering flavours”. For those that prefer their pies in front of the footy (or other favourite TV program), you can eat where you shop or buy to take home. Once you eat Pie Day you’ll never look back! You can find them in supermarkets and fresh food markets across Canberra, or order in bulk by calling Shane directly on 0430 538 638.
Have you tried a Pie Day pie? Are you celebrating International Pie Day on Tuesday? Please let us know in the comments below!
Elias Hallaj (aka CBRfoodie) is a part-time food blogger and full-time political staffer who has joined RiotACT as a regular contributor. All opinions are his own. If you have any tips or feedback you can find him on Twitter @CBRfoodie.