Word of mouth travels fast in New York City so it didn’t take long after the Little Pie Company opened its doors in 1985 for people to know that we were cooking up something good at our modest storefront on 43rd Street. Housed in the vibrant theater district in the Manhattan Plaza complex where many performing artists live, the Little Pie Company creates its star desserts in " a theater of baking". From the sidewalk, passersby can peer through large picture windows to see cooks in sparkling white caps and aprons baking pies, cakes and cookies --- peeling, slicing and arranging the fruit, pouring the fillings into crusts, placing the desserts into large steel ovens. Nearby rows and rows of pies with swollen golden brown crusts sit cooling on racks until they are snatched up to be taken home or consumed on the spot at the inside counter or at one of the outdoor tables, accompanied with a cup of coffee or a frothy cappuccino. The windows themselves are often decorated to celebrate seasonal holidays, reflecting a place with the friendliness of a neighborhood joint and the simple sophistication of a four-star patisserie. Berry pies in summer, pumpkin in fall, warm pecan in winter and strawberry rhubarb in spring, a variety of flavors to fit every mood, every month of the calendar. Remember a time when a home-made dessert equaled happiness? At the Little Pie company, it still does. Visit our Grand Central Terminal location, we are located in the lower-level dining concourse where seating is available to enjoy a slice of old-fashioned apple pie and a cup of coffee.
Little Pie Company is located in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan. Known as "Clinton" by the municipal government and devotees of former mayor DeWitt Clinton and as "Hell's Kitchen" by Daredevil and everyone else, this area of Midtown West is currently experiencing rapid (re)development. Spanning roughly from West 34th to 59th Streets and from 8th Avenue to the Hudson River, it still has a rough-and-tumble character when compared with other more defined neighborhoods in Manhattan. Once a bastion of poor and working-class Irish Americans, over the last decade the neighborhood has undergone tremendous gentrification as a result of its proximity to Midtown's many office buildings. Long-time residents, many of whom enjoyed reasonable rents and decent-sized apartments, are finding that conversion of rent-controlled and -stabilized apartments, coupled with the general building boom and strong economy, brought quick change to this formerly sleepy area. Given the strange, even Byzantine zoning regulations in New York, it’s not unusual to see a tiny brownstone, a remnant of another era, adjacent to or near a brand-new high-rise rental or condominium building. While the wholesome new Theater District has resulted in lower crime rates and decreased the area’s quality-of-life problems such as prostitution, urban transformation for some means a loss of the gritty qualities of this neighborhood for others. While you'll find thousands of new apartments in Hell's Kitchen west of Ninth Avenue, you'll also find dozens of eclectic and interesting restaurants to boot. Some of our favorites include the terrific Daisy May's BBQ on Eleventh Avenue; the German cuisine of Hallo Berlin and nearby Queen of Sheba featuring great Ethiopian cuisine on Tenth Avenue; French patisserie La Bergamote on West 42nd Street; Bali Nusa Indah on Ninth Avenue has intriguing Indonesian dishes; the Film Center Café for high-powered American diner-style dishes; and the many Thai places dotting Ninth Avenue too numerous to mention. Hotels in Hell's Kitchen include a number of budget places the further west you go such as The 414 Hotel and the Skyline. While there are dozens of hotels on Eighth Avenue and throughout the Theater District on Eighth Avenue and Broadway, Hell's Kitchen enjoys a somewhat more relaxed pace than the frenetic hubbub you'll find just two avenues further east. Check out the neighborhood's weekly Chelsea-Clinton News, a great local publication that’s been around longer than the former U.S. President’s daughter!
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