Thursday, May 3, 2007

Spy in the House of Pies

Let me say one thing first- I love House of Pies. This is my favorite establishment in all of Los Angeles. I dare say my favorite establishment since the establishment of democracy in Greece. Let me say a second thing second- I do not go to House of Pies for the food. I go for the pie.
The food at House of Pies can be good, don’t get me wrong. It can also be awful. It can be a great patty melt with delicious crispy french fries. It can also be a hair fried into a Monte Cristo sandwich. I’ve had breakfast lunch and dinner, morning, noon and night and you never know exactly how it’s going to be.

These are the things you can always count on at House of Pies-
Coffee. This coffee comes from God’s own South America. It’s always good. Strong and never burnt. The staff is always there to fill your cup. If I lived closer to the House of Pies, I would come in everyday just for the coffee.
Pie. The best pie this side of the Hollywood sign to be sure and possibly the whole state. I've never had a disappointing slice of pie here. The fruit pies are heavenly. The cream pies are devilishly good. They recently added a peanut butter cream pie that is so wonderful I often wish I could abandon my human form and become a slice of it. Why would I do this? Sounds strange doesn’t it? The reason- I know that I could never bring as much joy to another person as I’d give if I were that pie. That’s how fucking good this pie is.

These are things you might experience when you go to House of Pies-
Service of various quality. Your service at the House of Pies depends entirely on your waitress. This isn’t like the 101 Coffeshop where you can count on bad service because that’s how they do it. At House of Pies I’ve had good service and I’ve had lacking service. I hesitate to use ‘bad" to describe it. I’ve had times where getting the check was an ordeal. It tends to be very consistent with specific waitresses. There’s the older lady with the bum leg who is great up until its time to get the check or order another slice of pie (Yes, I said ANOTHER slice of pie). There’s the obese woman who reminds me of an unhealthy version of my mom who is sweet and never forgets about you. There’s the young Latina with the tight curls pulled back in a severe ponytail who always seems just two steps behind.

Closed for health code violations. A few months ago it was unexpectedly closed for a few days. If that isn’t hardcore diner eating I don’t know what is.
And finally, Captain Pimp. He is an elderly black man with a sweet leather jacket with small chains hanging off it and a captain’s hat and large sunglasses.

This particular morning I sat at the counter. I don’t do that but today was a day for counter service I believe. I was there early enough for the Early Bird special. These are meals for old people. Usually an egg, an english muffin, plain omelet, etc. Light stuff and cheap at under five dollars. I got the diced ham and egg and english muffin. The eggs were a little slimy as usual but certainly edible and enjoyable.

When it came for pie, I had to figure out what kind of mood I was in. Fruit of cream? I’m most often squarely in the cream pie camp. I thought about a chocolate cream pie, which I had not had in some time. The pull of the peanut butter cream was too much and I had to have it.

They serve the peanut butter cream pie with two pecans on top. Why? No clue. Am I curious enough to ask? Nope. This is an incredibly rich pie. The peanut butter flavor might be too much for some but those people are weak so disregard them. If you are one, I have disregarded you. The crusts on the cream pies are crumbly, not flaky. This is how I prefer my pie crusts. Without a tall glass of milk I just can’t do a flaky crust. I have been known to leave the crust uneaten if that’s the case.

Two interesting things from this particular time at House of Pies- An old man put pepper on his cottage cheese. I had never seen that before. I'm sure that man was CRAZY.
A woman sent back her chicken fried steak because she ordered it well done. Which is completely her prerogative, however she also thought her chicken-fried steak was actually chicken, so there you go.

UPDATE: 7-15-2010

I went to House of Pies with my friend Skylar last night. I had not been there in a couple of months and I recieved quite a shock.

What the hell was this? They completely redid the counter. They added two flat-screen tvs and lights and silver. It looks incredibly out of place and bizarre. I can't tell if this is just an odd design choice or if this is the first step in a slow conversion of House of Pies into Ten-Forward from Star Trek: The Next Generation.

The pie was as good as ever. We had the fresh peach and the german chocolate cream pie. The peach was amazing. It had thin slices of fresh layered peaches and was naturally sweet. I always forget that the cream pies they serve you are basically a fourth of a pie. It was rich and I only ate about 3/4 of it.

I am starting to dislike the whipped cream tops on the cream pies though. It's too dense and I often find myself scraping most of it off to get to the good stuff beneath it.

Price: $6-14 for most entrees
Food: Hey, it's your call dude.
Service: You take the good, you take the bad.
Pie: Well, yeah!

1869 N Vermont Ave
Los Angeles in the Los Feliz - Silverlake District
(323) 666-9961

1 comment:

Paul said...

Wow. That new counter is horrendous. I thought it seemed odd and unfinished the last time I stopped in, but I never suspected disco lights.