Good Taste: Magpie

Butterscotch pie from Magpie. (MICHAEL BRYANT / Staff Photographer)
Butterscotch pie from Magpie. (MICHAEL BRYANT / Staff Photographer)
Posted: September 20, 2012

I'll choose pie any day over cake (not to mention cupcakes), so it was with great anticipation that I waited for Magpie to finally open its adorable "nanna chic" cafe on South Street.

If my first buttery bites of designer-turned-baker Holly Ricciardi's delights are any indication, we've embarked on a wonderful new trend.

From the flaky-crusted slab pies filled with plum and almond, orange-blossom-scented peach, or apples laced with pink peppercorn-touched salted caramel, to a savory cup-shaped potpie crust brimming with creamy tarragon-infused chicken velouté, these homey-yet-sophisticated pies display smart handcraft and a sense of seasonal creativity.

The crunchy "pie fry" strips with fruit dips are a lovely, light snack. My favorite, though, was a slice of pure indulgence inspired by Ricciardi's great-grandmother, whose 1950s recipe, rich with brown sugar, eggs, and butter, has been goosed with a dose of Jim Beam, like butterscotch silk with a bourbon punch. It was good. Really good.

In fact, Barbuzzo's budino now has some old-school competition.

- Craig LaBan

Butterscotch bourbon pie, $5, Magpie, 1622 South St., 267-519-2904; www.iluvmagpie.com

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