Republic of Pie
Have you seen The Hobbit yet? Why not? What’s wrong with you? Are you locked in a basement, deprived of natural light and the ability to go to the movies? Your pockets a bit skint? I get that; it is the holidays…but come on! It’s The Hobbit for goblins sake! Dragon! Dragon!! DRAGON!!! I guess I needn’t tell you that I saw it recently (Tuesday as a matter of fact), nor the fact that I loved (nearly) every minute of it. I wasn’t an overall fan of Tauriel (her actress being half of my blasé attitude) nor the continual theme of Elves/Dwarves surfing improbably on objects not meant to be surfed on. I’m looking at you, Legolas. Poor Mirkwood prince missed his true calling in life as a pro surfer. He just wants to hang ten.
My friend Mr. J and I intended to catch an early showing, so I was up and at ‘em much earlier than usual. As I waited for Mr. J to pick me up, I heard footsteps coming up my staircase. Figuring it was the aforementioned friend, I began to gather my purse and put on my socks and shoes. I heard some rustling, but no one ever knocked. Then the person turned and walked back down the stairs. Unfortunately, this is not a singular occurrence and it never fails to freak me out. Rationalizing it was the postman, I peeped outside to discover a purse with a big present and little presents inside, addressed to me! On her way to an early morning meeting, my friend Annie decided to drop off my Christmas present because she is heading out to Denmark for the holidays and wanted to make sure I had my gift before she left. The big present was a Remington ceramic curling iron – which I’ll film a quickie review for eventually. You can see I’ve already been having fun playing with it!
Rachael, I can hear you cry out in agony, what does this have to do with pie? Absolutely nothing. Let’s boogie down.
Republic of Pie – interior
Down in the ever growing hip area of North Hollywood, within easy walking distance from the North Hollywood red line station is a deceptively spacious coffee house called Republic of Pie.
I met with Vince, the owner, who took over Republic of Pie and took it from an average coffee house to a neighborhood favorite. Listening to his customers and his own palate as a food forward self-taught home chef, Vince transformed the recipes. His personal favorite savory is the turkey pot pie. The success of his tender loving care was visible throughout my stay; I never once saw a lull in activity. At one point, the line was to the front door. Midday dates, study groups, solo Wi-Fi seekers, friends catching up; there was hardly a seat open.
Republic of Pie – Coffee
First and foremost, Republic of Pie is a coffee house, and Vince stresses that coffee is king of the Republic. He looked a bit broken hearted when I had to gently let him down that I cannot partake in coffee due to the caffeine. Everywhere I turned, however, patrons were enjoying a hot cup of joe from Portland’s finest, Stumptown Coffee. I contended with a vanilla flavored steamed milk.
Who says I can’t eat my dessert first?! Loathe as I am to admit this, their pumpkin pie trumps my own! It all came down to the seasonings, and though it tastes of the same seasonings I use (nutmeg, ginger, allspice, cinnamon) everything tasted too bold to be simply pulled off the rack in a jar. I’d warrant that at least with the cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg, they were freshly grated. This quintessential pumpkin pie gets my seal approval.
Australian Meat Pie
With a name like ‘Australian Meat Pie’ you’d assume it has meat unique to Australia in it – emu, anybody? Alas, ’tis only beef, but what a beef pie! Secured in that majestically buttery, flakey pastry exterior is the perfect Sloppy Joe’s. On par with the kind my mother always made me growing up, I was transported into rose-tinted comfort food induced memories. Ground beef in a thick tomato based gravy with a generous helping of onions and spices, Vince could not have picked a more apropos savory pie to serve me.
Chocolate Banana Cream Pie
I’m sitting here, totally stumped on how to describe this luscious slice of heaven. Silky smooth chocolate with velvety cream top layer and a bottom layer of banana to cut the intense, natural sweetness. Not at all overly sugary, though; just the perfect amount of indulgence one would hope for in a cream pie.
All of the food left me craving for more, despite filling me up to the point of needing Oompa Loompa assistance to roll me out of there. As long as Vincent and his staff maintain that high caliber of quality to the patrons of Republic of Pie, I predict well-loved longevity as a continued neighborhood mainstay.
BONUS: If you’re looking to pick up some pies for holidays, or any special occasion, give them a shout and 24 hours notice and Republic of Pie will have it ready for you!
Republic of Pie
11118 Magnolia Blvd,
North Hollywood, CA 91601
Sunday 8a-9p | Monday–Thursday 8a–10p | Friday-Saturday 8a-11p
BONUS: Live music every night!
Interior shots courtesy of Chad Miller. FTC disclaimer: the meal was on the house, but all opinions and wording remain my own!