19 April 2011

Pievana: Market Life is Delicious

Move over, cupcake- there’s a new pie in town.

Not just one pie either, many pies. Sweet ones, savory ones, and tiny little pie tarts that fit right in the palm of your hand.

Get ready for a lattice-crust-covered take over.

This year, some of the newest additions to the Portland Farmers Market line up include some pretty amazing pie slingers who feature everything from raw, vegan pies; to savory, bacon-in-the-middle hand pies. If your most recent experience of pie resembled something like canned pumpkin during Thanksgiving, you’re in luck. There are some new artisans around town that will show you just how pie is supposed to be: No canned pumpkin in sight.

The Raw: Divine Pie

Meet Alissa and her raw food creation, Divine Pie. Alissa originally began creating her famous raw pies for a food cart she cleverly called, A Streetcar Named Inspire. While the food cart business was good for Alissa, she gradually realized she needed to break out on her own and focus on her unique, raw pies full time.

Divine Pies are all made with love and filled with as many locally sourced ingredients as possible. With flavors like Key Lime, Chocolate Hazelnut (featuring our own Freddy Guy’s hazelnuts), and Marionberry Cheesecake, Alissa’s pies will trump any pre-conceived notions that raw food is too bland or too earthy. She even has a growing cult following to prove it. This may be the first year for Alissa at the market, but over the past few weeks, she’s been selling out like a true veteran.

The Classic: Loretta Jean’s

Named after owner Kate McMillen’s grandmother, Loretta Jean’s makes classic, flaky, butter crusted pies just the way you wish your own grandma used to make.

Kate’s grandmother taught her the secrets of pie making, and we’re all better for it. Kate spent 3½ years dreaming up creative pies at Random Order Coffeehouse on NE Alberta, as well as a stint at Tastebud in Southeast before opening up her own pie-centered business.

Loretta Jean’s quiches and pies are made from gorgeous, seasonal ingredients found right here in Oregon. Just like the name of her bakery, Kate’s market booth is nostalgic with elevated cake pedestals and tiny little fluted pie tarts filled with chocolate custard and whipped cream. But don’t be fooled by the sweet little pie “sliders” in the front of the case, Kate also has savory treats up her sleeve with ingredients like spicy meatballs, and roasted squash with goat cheese and caramelized onion. Last week she even gave us the first rhubarb pie of the year.

The Future of Portland Pie

Whether you’re into raw food pies sweetened with agave nectar, or butter laden pies filled with meatballs, the 2011 Portland Farmers Market has everything your little heart desires. Loretta Jean’s and Divine Pie are only two of our four, new, pie-centric vendors this year. Queen of Hearts, a gluten free bakery (though you’d never know it) can be found at the Saturday PSU market, and a new vendor, Crust & Common, will be opening up at our Northwest market in June.

Pies aside, if you still want a classic, frosting-loaded cupcake, you can get that too. We even promise not to give you a hard time about it, even though it’s like, so, 2010.

-Nicolette Smith