Move over doughnuts, pies coming through.
Potentially starting a new trend, Rustique Pie Kitchen in St-Henri bakes fresh, wholesome pies daily to stuff your piehole with. Whole pies are available, as are mini ones that while cute, serve a greater purpose. Portion control? Don’t kid yourself. To fulfill your gluttonous need to sample a variety of flavors? Damn straight.
The selection rotates frequently, featuring seasonal numbers and creative whims side-by-side with regular finds. Whatever the flavor, every mini pie – which can be consumed in three bites or less – will set you back $1.65.
The foundation of all good, classic pies lies in the golden crust. It has to be dense but flaky, and crisp along the outer rim. It shouldn’t be salty or sweet, just buttery enough to get noticed without distracting from the filling. Rustique Pie Kitchen meets all of the above.
Top and bottom crusts unite at the edges to seal in the peach stuffing in this peach pie. Fresh peaches reduced with a little bit of sugar transform into an orange, slightly chunky and tart mash that could pass for an apricot spread in a blind tasting.
In the raspberry pie, the essence of the red berries, seeds ever-present, doesn’t drown under the influence of sugar because there’s hardly any. It’s dominantly tart with bitter undertones – true to a fresh batch of not-quite-ripe raspberries.
Both fruit pies weren’t exactly standouts, and the fillings are to blame. My pastries were pretty hollow, and all that was found inside lacked oomph. Maybe they purposely skimp on sugar to let the nature of the fruits shine, but if so, something else is crucial to enhance their flavors.
Pecan pie gets nutty with crunchy pecans studded at the surface of a brown and jiggly layer that’s not at all sweet, gently kissed with salt and laced with butter. It should be sweeter, please! Preferably by way of the deep, rich profile of molasses or dark brown sugar.
I lucked out on two flavors I so desperately need to try: key lime and banana cream. But I did sink my teeth into #1 on my most-wanted list. Polished with a cloud of sweet, melt-in-your-mouth meringue to balance the bright, sour and beyond lemony custard, the lemon meringue pie is everything I hoped it would be. A+
Despite the name of the bakery, it’s not all pies up in there. There’s a baked good in store for every pie on display. Think cookies, brownies, blondies, marshmallows, bark and candy-coated popcorn to name a few.
Ideal for those who love sweeter-than-sweet treats is this giant meringue cookie ($1.00), its bottom dipped in chocolate and pistachios. In a matter of seconds, it goes from dry and crunchy to sticky and chewy, eventually turning into a pool of sugar.
Don’t even think about skipping the coconut macaroon ($1.09). With the exception of the lemon meringue pie, it’s better than everything I just described. Underneath that toasted exterior is a concentrated cluster of shredded coconut that’s chewy, sweet and ultra-moist. So good, I couldn’t get it off my mind for days.
A charming bakery with old-fashioned pies and goodies galore, Rustique Pie Kitchen is worth the detour to St-Henri if you don’t already rep the neighborhood. While I don't love all their pies equally and there are more pies to be had, the lemon meringue wonder along with the coconut macaroon will have me back for boundless encores. Cursed with an incessant need for sweets, it's only a matter of time before I discover other gems right under my nose.
N.B. Closed Monday
Rustique Pie Kitchen
4615 Notre-Dame W. | map