Pie in the Sky: Falling in Love at a Coffee Shop
One mild Karachi morning, I sat sipping my morning tea and buttered toast at Café Chatterbox when my phone buzzed. It was a message from my editor, and once pleasantries had been exchanged, she asked me if I had checked out Pie in the Sky. I took a snap of my surroundings and promptly sent it back to her; Pie in the Sky stocks at Café Chatterbox.
We agreed that the food gods were clearly smiling down on us and she asked me to try out their Hazelnut Brownie Pie and review it. My reaction: Hazelnut Brownie Pie! Say what?
Time for a deep and meaningful monologue…
In the world of food, reinventing a dish isn’t considered cheating. Taking a classic and altering it to create something brand new is appreciated as a revolution. But here Chatterbox has not reinvented a dish, they have taken two totally different categories of food and smooshed them together. On paper, it sounds life-altering, but a failed execution would be a disaster of unimaginable proportions. And so, with girded loins and strapping of battle armor, I bravely waded into the situation at hand.
For the greater good. For the people.
I call over Farhan, the head waiter, and a most exceptional and dedicated soul, to ask about this culinary creation. Apparently, it is one of their best sellers and is quite popular for birthday parties and high teas. He offered additional information; rather than buying the entire cake and indulging in a calorific orgy, it could be purchased by the slice. I headed on over to the Pie in the Sky display counter.
As the clock struck 12:00 pm I fell in love.
Chocolate curls sprinkled across delectable, drippy chocolate ganache with a visibly flaky crust beneath. I quickly got a slice to go and headed out the door. Pedal to the metal and I was home in a little under 10 minutes. I smuggled my ill-gotten booty inside and hid it in my fridge.
Unfortunately, my husband has the nose of a bloodhound. We are a perfect match made in food heaven but when I walked in on him chowing down on my precious slice I wanted to question it all. A quick mental calculation of lawyer fees calmed me down and I acerbically asked his opinion on said deliciousness. A simple man, of even simpler words, he responded with the eloquence of a brain-eating zombie; “Chocolaatteeee”. Thank you, Sam. Very helpful
I was not about to let this unexpected sabotage derail my plans and I headed back to Chatterbox Cafe in order to have my Pie in the Sky pie-brownie-cake-hybrid and eat it too. The second time around I decided to eat it on the spot. One bite was all it took; “Chocolaatteeee”.
The perfect symphony of texture and taste. Nothing monotone about this one; a juxtaposition of dark and milk, hazelnut and walnut, crunchy and moist, smooth and chunky. Pockets of silky chocolate chiffon tied it together and melted across my tongue. The brownie element shined through. Delicious chunks of walnut and hazelnut coated with lovely chocolate crumble.
The best part about it was that despite the richness, it was never overpowering in any sense of the word. Not bad at all Pie in the Sky.
At a time when new restaurants and bakeries are popping up all over Karachi like mushrooms, Pie in the Sky and Chatterbox continually think out of the box and keep coming up with new and interesting variations on cakes, pies, brownies et al. My house is now the haven of two cacao addicted zombies waiting on their next fix from Pie in the Sky. What can I say, except… Chocolaatteeee.