Hurry in for a slice of heaven
A car speeds down Woods Hole Road from Falmouth toward the Steamship Authority Wharf. It enters the parking lot, and queues up with the other Island-bound cars. The passengers jump out of the car and run for the hill. Destination: Pie in the Sky.
Islanders and visitors in the know reward themselves with a visit to this quaint bakery and café before boarding the ferry, and timing is everything. It takes only a minute to make it from the ferry parking lot to bakery heaven, as the crow flies.
We suggest you take time to decide since there is so much to choose from. On a cold day in January we jumped on the ferry for a quick escape to the bakery. Start with their coffee: they use Dean's Beans, organic and fair trade, and offer a 65-cent per cup special each week. The coffee decision is easy, but now on to the main course.
Breakfast is offered all day and could include an egg sandwich with linguica, ham, or sausage, with or without cheese, on one of their many freshly baked breads. Or just skip the sandwich and go directly to the muffins, scones, croissants, Danish (Anna Marie likes the pecan rolls the best), cinnamon rolls, and more.
Lunchtime regulars enjoy the many homemade soups such as clam chowder (always on the menu), the plum tomato bisque (another must for Anna Marie), or split pea with smoked bacon. Each day they have specialty soups, and quiche, as well as a breakfast and lunch dish.
"Our coffee is the single most popular item, 65 cents for a cup of fresh, organic brew is tough to pass up," says owner Erik Gura, who has run the bakery since 2002. But as for the most popular food items? "I have a number of customers who make special 20-plus mile trips for their favorite cup of plum tomato bisque, a slice of warm bread pudding, or cup of steaming hot cocoa."
Continuing with lunch, their sandwiches are the best - loaded, healthy, and tasty. "The Vermonter" is a ham and cheddar delight heated with fresh apples, Dijon mustard, served on toasted wheat bread. "Denise's #1 Rollup" combines turkey, guacamole, bacon, lettuce, and tomato. For vegetarians, try either the "Veggie Rollup" (hummus or guacamole, lettuce, tomato, red onion, sprouts, cukes, carrots, and peppers) or the garden burger. There is even a PB&J or a hot dog for the kids.
If you want a salad before splurging on dessert you can have a garden, Greek, or chef salad. Try some chicken, egg, or tuna salad on the side.
One thing Mr. Gura is passionate about is the quality of his food. Many of the ingredients are locally grown, some from as close to home as his own garden.
"My longtime friend and coffee supplier, Dean of Dean's Beans, is Massachusetts-based," says Mr. Gura. "During the growing season, my own garden supplies tomatoes, lettuce, pumpkins, and herbs to the shop. Another local farmer, based in Teaticket, also supplies tomatoes, blueberries, and lettuce."
Enough with vegetables, let's move on to dessert. If there is a huge pan of bread pudding on the counter, go for it. It is served warm, soaked in a smooth rum hard sauce, with a generous dollop of whipped cream. It is worth swimming over from the Island for.
If bread pudding isn't for you, go for their namesake, pie. From blueberry and key lime to pecan and chocolate mousse, they have quite an assortment. The fruit squares are heavy in that wonderful all-butter-and-sugar way. The cookies should be packed to go because you'll want to snack on them on the ferry ride home.
Along with the many local regulars who come from the many neighborhoods of Falmouth, Mr. Gura says among his favorite frequenters are Islanders, such as school sports teams and SSA employees.
"Seeing the Vineyarders come home victorious is sweet, and I especially enjoy the Steamship folks, the lifeline of the community."
Pie in the Sky is located at 10 Water Street in Woods Hole. For more information, call 508-540-5475, or visit woodshole.com/pie.