Hangry or Not? Fork-In Aussie Pie Kitchen (Santa Monica, CA)

To be hangry or not to be hangry, that is the question. Did I leave hangry or not? Well, the bottom line is that I left Aussie Pie HANGRY, and this why!

Fork-In Aussie Pie specializes in pies specializes in pies. The kind of pies that you’d get in… well… Australia. Now, I’ve been to New Zealand and Bermuda, where I’ve devoured dozens of pies. I’ve also had my fair share of pies in British, Scottish, and Irish establishments, so there’s something to compare this fare to.

At the end of the day, I had three issues with Aussie Pie. Here they are:

  1. The wait. A sign outside said they take three days to make and 30 seconds to re-make. That wasn’t the case. We went when it was slow and still waited about 10 minutes for our order. I don’t mind waiting for good food, but manage the expectations of your patrons. Be honest.
  2. The value wasn’t quite there. At $8-9 a pie, they could afford to give you more filling. The ratio of crust to what was inside was just off and the reason that bothered me was not just for the value, but also for…
  3. The top crust was not as good as the bottom crust. Now, the problem is that their bottom crust is so damn good that you can’t help but expect the same for the top. When it fall short of those expectations, you’re disappointed. I’d much rather have it open, without the top crust and with more of the filling, because all five of the different pies that I tried had great filling.

So the good news is that the filling and bottom crust are well done. The texture provided by the crisp and flaky lower crust contrast beautifully with the soft center, whether it’s made with meat or vegetable based. Also, the flavors are vibrant. Their use of alcohol in their cooking process is masterful.

Aussie Pie would win my heart if they kept their price point while improving their top crust and adding more filling. Otherwise they can lower the price point of the current pies they offer and I’d still return.

Still, I left hangry and I’d love to see some minor changes made here because with those adjustments I know I would leave not-so-hangry!

P.S. – The gravy that comes with the takeout lacks flavor and doesn’t feel like the flour has been totally cooked down. It’s grainy and the flavor in the pies themselves outshine it completely.

With that being said, their packaging for to-go orders is excellent and their marketing on the sidewalk is both clever and amusing. Good work! Here are some images for you to enjoy…. Australian food porn, if you will.

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