My Thoughts About One of My Favorite Places--Northeastern Indiana's Amish Country

Monday, September 12, 2022

The Pie Critic Returns: Fresh Peach Pie

 Last fall my husband Gary did a “guest post” called “The Pie Critic” in which he evaluated four local pumpkin pies and rated them.  Well, he’s back, and now he’s going to talk to you about fresh peach pies—meaning, the shell is baked, then the filling is added, then a topping of whipped cream, so the filling is fresh, not baked.

Fresh peach pie is part of what Gary calls the “Fresh Fruit Pie Trifecta”—strawberry in June, blueberry in July, and peach in August, typically.

Our first pie (above) is from Blue Gate Bakery, a part of the Blue Gate Restaurant complex in central Shipshewana.  I’m not a fan of the restaurant these days, but the bakery remains a favorite—although not in this case…  Gary showed up on a Monday morning to see a sign saying “Today Only—Fresh Peach” with a price.  He mistakenly thought they had fresh peach only that day, but the reality was, it was the sale price that was “Today Only.”  But he took home the pie…

Gary rates this one only 2 forks.  His comments:  “Fresh?—I don’t think so. The fruit was already getting soft...  It had a good amount of fruit, and I bet three days earlier it would have been great.  They are very generous with their whipped cream topping, and the crust was very good too.  But I ended up having one piece, and then throwing the rest away.”

Our second pie (above) is from Country Lane Bakery.  This bakery make mini pies as well as full sized ones, and Gary bought a mini.  Country Lane is located south of Route 20 between Shipshe and Middlebury, on County Road 43.  It’s a small Amish-run bakery with a whole lot of amazing food for sale.

Gary rates this one 3.5 forks.  His comments:  “The filling tasted very good.  It had a fair amount of fruit but not loaded, just okay.  The crust was a bit overdone, which is very atypical for Country Lane—I’ve almost never bought anything there that was underbaked or overbaked!  The whipped cream on top was okay, but not as good as Blue Gate’s.”


Our third pie (above) is from Essenhaus Bakery, located adjacent to Das Dutchman Essenhaus Restaurant in Middlebury.  This pie was also a convenient mini size, so the picture shows half the pie.

Gary rates this one 4.5 forks.  He says, “The crust was excellent—flaky and cooked perfectly.  The filling was also excellent with a good amount of fresh fruit.  The whipped cream was also excellent.  The peach slice garnish was a nice touch."

As always, nobody can ever get 5 forks except Gary’s mom!…  However—he managed to get ahold of a fresh peach pie from our dear friend Ruth.  Sorry to say, her pies aren’t available for purchase—only for lucky friends like us!  Gary says, “I give Ruth’s fresh peach pie 4.75 stars—4 forks and 3 tines!  The crust was perfect, it had good and generous fresh fruit, a nice whipped topping—and she added her own special touch—a thin layer of cream cheese between the crust and the fruit filling.  Amazing!”

Stay tuned for more from my favorite foodie, the handsome and talented Pie Critic.  <3