Many people I know have sung the praises of PieBird, but I hadn't had a chance to see what the buzz was about. Until, Valentine's Day when we decided to make it the site of our Out & About lunch meeting.
The Location: 618 N Person St., Raleigh
The Company: Four awesome members of our Out & About team
The Service: Our server was knowledgeable about the dishes and did a great job of running through the dessert pies, which we needed to know more about.
The Meal: Everyone tried something different. Here is everyone's take:
Kathy: I started with the vegan chili. After a little mix-up that left me starving, I finally got the chili and it was worth the wait. You could barely tell there wasn't meat in it. The beans were so hearty. Definitely would order it again. I paired the chili with a chicken pot pie hand pie. The hand-pies are smaller than their traditional entree pot pies, but it is more than enough for lunch when paired with a side item. The chicken and vegetables were complemented by the soft and slightly crispy crust.
For dessert, I tried their signature Chocolate Cream Pie. It was good with a gooey pudding like chocolate filling. Definitely big enough to share!
Sarah: Okay, I admit it, I can't write a bad review! I always try to focus on the good stuff and my review of my recent experience at PieBird will be no different! I'll gloss over the distracted wait staff that mixed up our orders and the fact that there's no way I could eat my "hand pie" with one hand as the menu claims (I was expecting something more like pizza, or quiche) and I'll talk about the cozy interior and fresh ingredients instead.
The sweet little bird decor is one of my favorite motifs these days and I really like the upscale-diner-with-chalkboard-menu trend. It was a pleasant and warm place to have lunch with great natural light. The sautéed garlic greens were delicious! In fact, I'm craving them as I write this. The spinach and feta hand pie that came next was good, although at first the whole caraway seeds (or maybe they were fennel) seemed a little overpowering but after a few more bites the flavors blended nicely.
The hand pie and the side of greens definitely left me with room for dessert so I ordered the peanut butter pie and some coffee. The peanut butter pie was surprisingly salty so I'm glad I had the coffee (which was served in a cute little french press) to wash it down with. I wish they had some sort of lunch special or a special offer because $20 was more than I personally like to spend a light lunch but I would recommend PieBird to friends!
Lisa: Fair warning to any other detoxers out there - temptation is the worst at Pie Bird! Since their opening in 2010, I have yet to pass up an invitation to this charming Mordecai destination, so even though I’m only consuming a vegan (and wheat and flour-free) diet for the next two weeks to get ahead of the upcoming bikini season, I still jumped at the chance to join my WRAL Out & About team for lunch.
I enjoyed the chopped salad (cucumbers, tomatoes, celery, avocado, on a bed of mixed greens – sans the red onion and bleu cheese crumbles) with a cup of vegan chili, both served impeccably fresh. Props to our server, too, who asked if I would like a side portion of the salad since I was also ordering chili – service like that is much appreciated!
The only downside to my entire lunch at PieBird? Having to walk out without having sampled the chocolate brownie pie! P.S. – I checked in on FourSquare while there and paid with my American Express, which apparently will be earning me a $5.00 credit on this month’s AMEX statement. That’s quite the deal, since my lunch was under $10.
Jodi: One "hand pie" and a side is certainly enough for lunch, and will leave you with room for dessert. I started with the pork and greens soup, which had a smoky flavor but was a touch greasy.
My pie was black bean and green chiles and came topped with a cold, crisp pico de gallo. The effect was of Tex-Mex in a crust -- not at all spicy, but thoroughly satisfying.
For dessert I had the "bluebird of happiness," which has no blueberries involved. It was described as chess pie on an oatmeal cookie crust. The result was dense, chewy and reminiscent of caramel.
Altogether, I found Pie Bird to be an excellent choice for quick, tasty and thrifty lunch. Had I not opted for dessert, I could have gotten out under $10.
The Final Bill: Everyone except Lisa ended up spending more than $10 for lunch.
The Verdict: We would all go back but not always opt for dessert at lunch to keep the bill under $10.