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Keys -- key lime pie from freshly squeezed juice

j
joshlh Mar 16, 2004 11:37 AM

I'll be driving through the Florida Keys in a few weeks, and figure this might be my best chance to taste a pie made from freshly squeezed key limes, aside from hunting up a source for them and making one myself. So far, my internet search for likely restaurants and pie merchants has yielded little more than unqualified "to die for" recommendations. In _Fading Feast_ Raymond Sokolov reveals that Manny & Isa's Kitchen on Islamorada has a grove out back which supplies juice for its pies, and I've found more current corroborating info online. This place sounds like a winner, even if they do store it frozen between squeezing and baking. Does anybody else have any recommendations for pies traditional or new-fangled, as long as they're made from unconcentrated, preferably un- frozen or pasteurized, key lime juice?

Thanks,
Josh

  1. s
    Stormi Mar 16, 2004 01:25 PM

    The only place to get fresh key lime pie other than Manny & Isa's Kitchen in Islamorada is Kermit’s Key West Key Lime Shoppe, located in Old Town at the corner of Greene & Elizabeth Street. Its very close to the Schooner Wharf Bar as you are headed that way. One other place I can recommend is Key West Key Lime Pie Company. Its located on the corner of Caroline & Greene St.'s, right around the corner from the Key West Key Lime Shoppe. All three places have website for you to check-out if you want.

    We have tried every key lime pie from Key Largo to Key West & these three places are the best IOHO. We have a 4th, The Blond Giraffe but that's why its in 4th place. There are two locations in Key West, one on Duval St. & Truman Avenue. They also have a website & there factory is located on Stock Island. There is a website, if you haven't already found a good recipe for key lime pie at the bottom of this reply. Manny & Isa's Kitchen is very close to the entrance to The Moorings, on the left, in Islamorada as you are headed south on U.S.1 or the Overseas Highway.

    Link: http://www.gourmetsleuth.com/recipe_k...

    1. s
      susan Mar 17, 2004 09:39 AM

      There was a cuban bakery in Key Largo that had the best key lime pie. The crust was a cookie type crust very crisp and the pie was real sweet/tart. I can't remember the name but it was in a pink strip mall on the west side of the highway in Key Largo. I don't know if it is still there but if you are going through there it is definitely worth a stop.

      4 Replies
      1. re: susan
        p
        pluziam Mar 17, 2004 10:01 AM

        Yes, Yes, the pie was great, but I had the best cuban sandwich there and cafe con leche, across from the entrance to John Pennecamp state park. I didn't write it up because not certain of the name. I think Marlin??? I also had an excellent slice at Mrs. Mac's.
        I have to admit I prefer the frozen chocolate covered on a stick.

        1. re: pluziam
          f
          flavrmeistr Mar 17, 2004 10:25 AM

          The trick is to squeeze a key lime over you slice of key lime pie before you eat it. That's how it's done.

          1. re: pluziam
            s
            susan Mar 17, 2004 09:51 PM

            I'm so glad you remember the place because it is not very impressive to see at all. They are a local cuban hangout with cuban sandwiches sitting out front on the counter and it is sort of a deli. The key lime pie is so great that people drive one hour to get their pies. I'm so glad to hear they are still in business. Good for them.

            1. re: susan
              k
              key lime bob Apr 6, 2004 03:51 AM

              Does anybody know of a bakery in Key West that makes the "BEST" key lime pie? I remember the top surface of the pie was very white and possibly had a sweet meningue made with all the powdered sugar it could hold.

        2. j
          joshlh Apr 1, 2004 02:05 PM

          Thanks, everyone, for your suggestions. I ended up trying the pie at Manny & Isa's, Kermit's Key Lime Shoppe, and Blue Heaven. The consensus in our group was that Manny & Isa's was by far the best, although it was in a pastry crust. Blue Heaven's had the nicest graham cracker crust, although the custard didn't compare at all. Manny & Isa's also had a nice fresh grouper sandwich, but their cuban sandwich was not so great. The Marlin Restaurant's was much better (they didn't seem to have key lime pie, though). Thanks again,

          Josh

          4 Replies
          1. re: joshlh
            TBird Apr 30, 2008 07:02 PM

            i know this is an old thread, but i am headed there tomorrow and was wondering if these places still exist or if some new places have popped up? i am fully hooked on steve's here in brooklyn, so any comparison would be great. thanks in advance!

            1. re: TBird
              butrfli1227 May 2, 2008 05:48 AM

              Manny & Isa's has closed. I've been to Key West quite a few times and there are a lot of good pies. But the one thing I always get is the Chocolate-Dipped Key Lime Pie on a Stick at the Blonde Giraffe. The pie is creamy and perfectly tart and the chocolate is great too. It might sound like a weird combination, but it's delicious!

              1. re: butrfli1227
                c
                CarolinaB May 2, 2008 08:49 AM

                Actually, Manny & Isa's re-opened late last year, just a bit down the road from the original location. Manny and Isa are still retired, but a local restaurateur is running it now, and the woman who used to work at the old restaurant is leading the new kitchen. We took a pie home on our last trip down there, and it was great.

                1. re: CarolinaB
                  TBird May 5, 2008 03:56 PM

                  we had the blond giraffe. slightly disappointed, but we in brooklyn(seriously!) are spoiled with steve's(swingle). a good time was certainly had and at the very least, it's key lime pie dipped in chocolate on a stick. how bad can it be?
                  :-)

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