Saturday, May 29, 2010

This is how much a pie should cost.

Baked goods

Now, look.  I live in New York City, but I'm a midwesterner by heritage (and a west-coaster by birth!).  When it comes to my taste buds, I like to imagine I'm eating through life with an eye toward both down-to-earth sanity and aspirational luxury.  I don't need everything I eat to be beautiful, trendy, or perfect.  Still, I can appreciate good food, I have enough income to pay a fair-to-inflated price for dishes made by others every so often, and I know how much work it can be to create an amazing mouthful.

This established, I am horrified at the price of whole pies around here.  Pie-men (I mean this as a genderless term) in NYC ask a lot for their creations, and I think it's gotten out of control.  For example, I have a lot of affection for a Brooklyn establishment known as Pies 'n' Thighs.  I treasure their "chicken box" dinner close to my heart.  But their whole pies cost $30.  Yeek, I say.  Yeek!  That's expensive. 

I've bought, eaten, and made a lot of pie in my lifetime.  I'm willing to pay a fair price for a good one, too, but frequently the $30 pies of the world (and I'm not talking about pies from Pies 'n' Thighs specifically because I can't afford them) do not measure up to the down-home simplicity and pleasing flavors of, say, an Amish creation retailing for $4.25 (as advertised in the photo at the top of this post).

I took the picture up top at The Green Dragon to remind all of us that a delicious pie need not break the bank.   I mean, I'd pay more than $5 -- I don't want to rip off any pie-bakers -- but I doubt the Amish women selling these pies were doing so at a loss.  I know people selling homemade pies will have to charge more than that per pie if they don't grow their own fruit, but there's a lot of room for fair pricing between $5 and $30.

I'm taking a daring, political stance: Accessible pie prices for every man, woman, child, and person who does not identify as male or female!


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