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Try Something Different This Holiday Season: Sweet and Savory Pies from Piecemeal Pies

Nov 05, 2020 04:43PM ● By Virginia Dean

Rabbit and Bacon Pie

To local chef and owner Justin Barrett, sitting down and taking the first bite of his mouthwatering Steak and Kidney Pie is his reward for putting together a unique combination of beef and lamb kidneys braised with Guinness, mustard, Worcestershire and beef stock.

A British inspired pie shop and local hard cider bar called Piecemeal Pies in downtown White River Junction, VT, Barrett uses only local, organic and seasonal ingredients that he calls “exceptional”, the “tastiest” and the “best”.

“We want to make food that’s delicious for the community we love,” Barrett said. “And we want to offer the best cider around.”

Not surprisingly, then, it is not unusual to see a line formed out the front door of the farm-to-table restaurant that used to house the former JJ Newberry department store – and just a stone’s throw from the Center for Cartoon Studies and Northern Stage.

A graduate of architecture school, Barrett designed the space and did most of the renovation himself, resulting in a uniquely vintaged place. His partner, Joshua Brown, has also helped with construction and renovation and currently preps and serves the savory dishes.

Open from Wednesday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., the small eatery’s signature dish is Rabbit & Bacon Pie. The rabbit comes from Vermont Rabbitry in Glover, and is braised with local bacon, caramelized onions, garlic, thyme, prunes & red wine. 

Other delectable but not exhaustive items include Chicken & Leek Pie including pasture-raised chickens from Sunrise Farm in White River Junction, braised with leeks, garlic, white wine, chicken stock, McNamara Dairy (NH) cream & lots of herbs; Curried Lamb Pie with ground lamb from Sunrise Farm in White River Junction, braised with coconut milk, our curry mix of 14 freshly ground spices, cilantro, chickpeas, sweet potatoes, and cauliflower.

The Smoked Trout & Fennel Pie has smoked trout from Duck Trap River in Lincolnville Maine, with onions, garlic, celery, fresh fennel, lemon zest & McNamara Dairy (NH) cream; and the Coronation Chicken Pie - inspired by the chicken salad dish made for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953 - contains chicken braised in Indian curry and coconut milk, combined with toasted almonds, yogurt & dried apricots, in flakey pastry.

The French Canadian Tourtiére is the classic Quebecois holiday pie made with braised pork, rabbit & NH-raised veal with potatoes, sage & traditional spices, in flakey lard pastry. 

“This doesn't even touch on our sweet pies”, Barrett noted.

And some of those include Salted Caramel Apple with three varieties of Champlain Orchard apples, raw sugar, fresh ginger, cider jelly & English sea salt; Sour Cherry Maple with NY sour cherries, allspice & wood-fired maple syrup from Elm Grove Farm in Woodstock; Chocolate Bourbon Pie; and Roasted Vermont Pumpkin pie.

“This is my mom's recipe, made with sugar pumpkins & red kuri squash grown for us by Black Sheep Farm in Hartland,” said Barrett.

To complement his dishes, Barrett believes a well-crafted hard cider is ideal. He offers Flag Hill, Shacksbury, Eden, Whetstone, and Citizen Cider, among others. Beers come from River Roost in So. Royalton.

If you're looking to put a spin on this year's holiday pie (without having to make it yourself), Call 802.281.6910 to place an order. Whether it is sweet or savory, we're sure you won't be disappointed. 

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