Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Bye Bye Cutie Pies

So... I've thought long and hard how to write this and still haven't come up with much. Here's the fact, Cutie Pies will be officially closing this Saturday. The Saturday Winter Market at Hope Artist Village will be our last hurrah.

The menu? Whatever I feel. I was thinking maybe a Drunken Coconut Turtle, or a Lemon Thistle. Not sure yet, but I know it'll be amazing, and exactly what I want to see. If there's any requests, now is the time. I don't doubt there'll be more than two pies, because who can say all they want to with just two?

The question a lot of y'all must have on your mind is why. Very simple, though twofold. First is the economy. We're small, one full time employee (me) and a part time, sometimes more depending on the season. It's been two years, to the day, and we haven't gotten any bigger. I can't find any funding to grow, the SBA is dry and every backer I find takes a look at the tax codes here in Rhode Island and backs right out. Food is also a risky investment. So I have a choice.... I can stay small and barely make ends meet or move on to something else with a little more security.

The other big reason is my mother. As some of y'all know she's been sick and is only getting worse. I'm taking this time to head down to Florida in order to look after her and run her business for a little while. Until she gets back on her feet or until something else. What will happen to Shea, you ask? He'll stay here for the time being, until things are figured out. We're taking the next few months as they come. It's what times of transition call for.

Before I sign off, I'd like to say a few things and some folks I'd like to thank. First to my partner Shea. He's been very supportive and has struggled with me through everything, lent a hand when he could and backed off the best he knew how when he had to. Also Josh Selle, the owner of the now gone Blue Elephant. He rented his kitchen to me when we started out and we wouldn't have gotten anywhere without him. Ian Wade, now at Julian's, has been a great support and a fantastic cook, there's no amount of praise I can give that's worthy of him.

I'm deeply indebted to Tina of Tina's Jamaican Caribbean Restaurant. She took up our cause after we parted ways with the Elephant, and has been my personal champion. Tina, in all her warmth, love and glory, is one of the best human beings I've had the pleasure of meeting. Please, keep going to her place, show her support. I know of no harder working, loyal and genuinely lovable people. Her food is amazing and walking into her place you'll feel a great homecoming. I did.

And while there's a whole host of folks I'd love to thank personally, I wont bore y'all. There's just one big ass group. And that's y'all. If you're reading this, you've bought something in the past or been part of this little adventure. You've supported and loved us beyond the call of duty, read all the updates, ordered, showed up at markets, festivals, hired us for weddings, tea parties and everything else in between. You've delighted in my weird little creations and enjoyed classics. You've hung on when maybe something didn't turn out exactly as expected and been surprised when the unlikely knocked it out of the park.

Thank you.

Because of y'all I made it two years. That's longer than most in this business, and if I were to go on I have no doubt y'all would still be with me. I am grateful.

While I know this is kind of sad, especially for those who've no idea how I made that Sweet Chai Pie or crave Chicago Blues, know this isn't the end. I'm leaving the door open. I'm willing to come back to being the Pie Lady in the future, here or elsewhere. Nothing is ever the end and never say never and all that.

You're welcome to come around on Saturday to send us off, take a picture or get one last cinnamon roll. I'll be there and happy to see you because you've been great.
Cutiepies - Our only competition is Mom.
400 flavors, 9 crusts, and 3 sizes
at your local market or for home delivery.

- Providence Phoenix & RI Monthly 2009

Friday, March 19, 2010

French Vanilla Strawberry and Sunrise Pie

Hey all! Yes, another late entry into our ongoing menu release. Why? I just got strawberries.

Strawberries, you say... not just any strawberries, but local organic greenhouse strawberries!
There aren't many, so I'm making a French Vanilla Strawberry pie. This has just about everything you'd want. Sweet, light, rich and chock full of bursting fresh berries. I love berries more than almost anything else, so it is a delight to work with really good ones.

In other things I love, I love sunshine. We have finally come out of the worst of winter, it's almost behind us, almost all done. As some of you know, I'm a southern gal and can't stand the winter, just makes me want to sleep. But then spring starts to come in, the windows get thrown open and I shake off the doldrums of winter and get into something new.

Hence, Sunrise Pie. This is a playful orange cream with toasted coconut layered on top. This reminds me of bright days, warm breezes, picnics and kite flying. Which are all things I'm looking forward to.

We'll be at the Hope Artist Village in Pawtucket tomorrow, that's Saturday, from 11-2. And if you're lucky, and early enough, you'll find some cinnamon rolls and a bit of Cutie Quiche. See you then, and stay tuned, big announcement next week.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Giveaway ~ Get a free pie from Cutie Pies!

Here at Cutie Pies we love to work with other great people (that's why we work with Tina's, Farm Fresh, I Heart Providence, etc), and Erika Smith at I {heart} Rhody is no different. We're big fans of her blog and have coordinated a giveaway with her. Yea! I'm going to simply cut and paste the entry, because she put it so well.
Enter early and often, y'all and get a free pie, is what it comes down to.
Thanks and have a great week!

Giveaway! ~ Get a free pie from Cutie Pies!

This is my first giveaway! Because of its nature, it's limited to readers who live within traveling distance of the Wintertime Farmer's Market in Pawtucket.

Cutie Pie Pies is a Rhode Island bakery that has more than 400 different pie recipes. Each week, Iris the Pie Lady makes two flavors, ranging from the unusual ("Black and Tan") to the standbys (Chocolate Cream) and available in three sizes. In 2009, Cutie Pies was voted Best Pie in Rhode Island by both the Providence Phoenix and Rhode Island Monthly. You'll find Iris, her friendly smiles and wonderful pies at the Wintertime Farmer's Market in Pawtucket, and she's been known to pop up in other venues as well.

Iris has generously offered a full sized pie in your choice of Black & Tan or Chocolate Irish Cream flavor. The pie must be picked up on March 13 at the Cutie Pies table at the Wintertime Farmer's Market, or by arrangement with Iris.

Black & Tan is a sweet guinness bottom layer with a chocolate top.
Chocolate Irish Cream is a creamy chocolate pie infused with Bailey' and decadent.

Either will be a delicious and fun addition to your St. Paddy's Day.

To enter:

  1. Mandatory entry. Visit Cutie Pies Web site at, and leave a comment, telling Iris what flavor sounds best to you (you can even make a suggestion!), then leave the SAME COMMENT HERE. (this gives you two entries)
  2. For an additional entry, follow iheartrhody on Twitter, then leave a SEPARATE COMMENT here.
  3. For an additional entry, follow cutiepielady on Twitter, then leave a SEPARATE COMMENT here.
  4. For an additional entry, become a fan of I {heart} Rhody on Facebook , then leave a SEPARATE COMMENT here.
  5. For an additional entry, become a friend of Cutie Pies on Facebook, then leave a SEPARATE COMMENT here.
  6. For an additional entry, follow this blog and then leave a SEPARATE COMMENT here.
  7. For an additional entry, follow Cutie Pie's blog and then leave a SEPARATE COMMENT here.
  8. For an additional entry, Tweet about the contest with a link to this page and then leave a SEPARATE COMMENT here.
  9. For an additional entry, post a link to the giveaway on your Facebook page and then leave a SEPARATE COMMENT here.
Note: Please do not enter if you will be unable to pick up the pie at the Wintertime Farmer's Market in Pawtucket on March 13, 2010.

Winner will be selected by on March 8, 2010. The winner will have 48 hours to respond, or I will draw another winner. Winner may choose either Black & Tan or Wild Honey pie.

Thanks to Iris for making this giveaway possible!