I couldn’t resist it, I had to celebrate National Pi Day at Pie-Not, the Aussie Style Bakery in Costa Mesa. It had been a while since I sampled these savory meat pies. And today, being March 14th, Pi Day (as in the mathematical pi not the baked good), the Dog’s Eye was on sale for $3.14. But of course.
I have fond memories of visiting Australia some years ago and I do remember eating some meat pies and discovering the coffee-deliciousness of flat whites (lattes) over there. The guys behind Pie-Not are Jai Snowdon, originally from the Gold Coast of Australia, and Ryan Lopiccolo, of Newport Beach, California. The partners’ laid-back vibe is definitely reflected in their 17th Street Costa Mesa location.
Pie-Not offers meat, veggie, and gluten-free pies, as well as desserts, espresso and handcrafted coffee drinks – all inspired from bakeries across Australia.
The last time I took a Pie Not pie home, my family wasn’t too keen – but I suppose it takes some getting used to for the American palate to enjoy a not-sweet but rather, savory pie. Take the popular Dog’s Eye (regularly $5.50) which is filled with premium ground beef with finely diced onions in a shortcrust pastry shell with a puff pastry lid. It’s kind of like a burger in a pie but that would not do it justice at all. You could describe Aussie pies as less-soupy versions of pot pies but really you’d have to taste it and decide for yourself. Pie Not features a menu of creatively named pies like the Drunken Cow (red wine and roasted garlic braised premium chunky beef and pearl onions in shortcrust pastry shell with a puff pastry lid) and Rockin Chook (premium chunky chicken breast with apricots, pine nuts, sultanas, saffron and fresh herbs in a shortcrust pastry shell with a puff pastry lid).
Like the pies, the Sweet Treats are not your typical cupcake and cookie fare either. Classic Australian desserts like the Digger – an ANZAC biscuit (that’s a cookie to you and me) from World War 1 made using rolled oats, flour, desiccated coconut, sugar, butter, golden syrup, baking soda and boiling water and the Lamington – a butter sponge cake cubed and rolled in chocolate icing and dusted with desicated coconut, pair well with their Bun Coffee from Byron Bay.
It doesn’t have to be Pi Day to try out Pie Not. Visit them at 270 E 17th St. #17, Costa Mesa, CA. (They’re right next to Sidecar Donuts.)