After a long, skinny summer, we’re ready for some carbohydrate-loading in the form of a slice, slice, baby. Not pizza, but fresh-from-the-oven fruit, chocolate, and even savory pies to kick off the season. Who needs to wait until the holidays?
Click through the above gallery for a peek at the pies.
Best All American—Apple Crumb, Flour Girl
What’s more all-American than tart Granny Smith apples lightly sweetened, spiced with cinnamon, and topped with a crunchy crumble? This pie. So, okay, it gets a little international twist with some Chinese 5-spice, but we’ll still claim this taste bomb as our own. Preorder at myflourgirl.com .
Best Savory—Mushroom Bourguignon Pot Pie, Criminal Baking Company
A vegetarian twist on one of Julia Child’s most classic French dishes, perfect for cool fall days. All of the flavor, none of the beef. 808 Donahue St., Santa Rosa. 707-888-3546, criminalbaking.com
Best Throwback Pie—S’more Mississippi Mud Pie, Noble Folk
Fall sometimes comes a little too fast. Bring back memories of summer with a decadent chocolate and marshmallow pie atop a graham cracker crust. Fluffy whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon class things up. 116 Matheson St., Healdsburg and 539 Fourth St., Santa Rosa. thenoblefolk.com
Best Friday Pie—The Weekly Special, Hazel
Every Friday is pie day at this Occidental restaurant. Co-owner Michele Wimborough’s pies are legendary, ranging from peanut butter and blackberry to Dutch apple and lemon meringue. You never know what she’ll be making, which is half the fun of your pie adventure. 3782 Bohemian Hwy., Occidental. 707-874-6003, restauranthazel.com
Best Taste of the South—Pecan Pie, Sweet T’s
Famous Southern pecan pie served just as it should be—with a crown of vanilla ice cream and a drizzle of caramel. 9098 Brooks Rd. S., Windsor. 707-6875185, sweettssouthern.com
Best Rock ‘n’ Roll Pie—The Elvis, Petaluma Pie Co.
This petite shop has sweet and savory pies of every stripe, but we’re especially fond of the Elvis Pie (peanut butter cream, bananas, chocolate cream, chopped peanuts and whipped cream). This Elvis wants to leave the building with you. 125 Petaluma Blvd. N., Petaluma. 707-7666743, petalumapiecompany.com
Best Pie for One—Berry Hand Pies, Village Bakery
The relocated bakery has handy handfuls of pie perfect for on-the-go. Be a little stealthy, though. Crumbs on the car seat are a dead giveaway that you’re not a sharer. 3851 Sebastopol Rd., Santa Rosa. 707-829-8101, villagebakerywinecountry.com
Old-School Sweetness—Natural Sugar Apple Pie, Mom’s Apple Pie
For those who don’t want a lot of added white sugar, Mom’s makes a twocrust apple pie made with apple juice concentrate to boost the yum without extra sweeteners. 4550 Gravenstein Hwy. N., Sebastopol. 707-823-8330, momsapplepieusa.com