On Person Street, just up from the corner of Pace Street in downtown Raleigh, is Pie Bird. As the name would suggest they serve a wide variety of pies. They aren’t just desserts either. There are the sweet pies that most would be accustomed to, but they also serve meat pies and veggie pies of all sorts from chicken pot to tomato pies. Owner Sheilagh Cassidy said the idea for the restaurant was, in a way, accidental. Finding herself unemployed in the fall she decided to offer to make pies for her neighbors in Historic Oakwood for the holidays. She dropped menus in mailboxes on two streets in the neighborhood and before she had even gotten home there were people calling her ordering pies. That’s when she realized that there was a market for pies.
The menu is extensive. Beyond the various types of pies there are sandwiches, soups and salads. Cassidy said they get a lot of compliments on the Moravian chicken pie. The chocolate cream pie was featured in Southern Living. Other than that Cassidy says her favorite depends, saying, “The shepherd’s pie is good in the winter, and the strawberry pie is good in the spring.” The desert cannot be ignored either. Pies as simple as honey and sea salt pie to the Girl Scout Cookie inspired Samoa pie made with coconut and caramel, the selection is incredible.
The latest trip that I made to Pie Bird was at lunch time. At lunch they serve a slightly different menu than dinner time. Lunch features smaller hand pies along with slices of some of the savory pies. I had two hand pies: one filled with pimiento cheese and the other with chicken curry. Both were absolutely amazing. Incredibly satisfying and cooked perfectly. The crust was light and airy, and the fillings were divine. The chicken curry was as good as any I’ve ever had. The pimiento cheese avoided the fatal trap that so many have fallen into: I of course mean being mostly mayonnaise. While the two pies I chose would not normally be eaten together, I felt like tasting something less frequently seen on menus in Raleigh. To finish it all off I had a slice of the Samoa pie, heated, with ice cream. It was outstanding. I don’t typically order, or really even think about, deserts but these pies are something that even I can’t resist.
Because I grew up in Oakwood and my parents still reside there, I have been to Pie Bird several times. Everything I have eaten there was excellent and I never find myself without leftovers. With friendly service, and a relaxed atmosphere Pie Bird is a great place to go relax and eat a hearty meal. The entrees are beyond compare and the desert is some of the best I have ever had. While it looks unassuming from the outside Pie Bird is a fantastic place to go and enjoy yourself. I have to give Pie Bird a five out of five, and it definitely deserves it. If you are looking for all types of pies, or just a good meal, try finding your way to Pie Bird. You won’t regret it.