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Apr 14, 2005 03:19 PM

The best apple pie in Northern California

  • h

I love eating good apple pies and also enjoy making them.

My favorites are:

Mom's Apple Pie on the way to Sebastapol from Santa Rosa. Gravenstein apples which are my favorite. Haven't been up there for a while so I'm not sure they are still there.

Gizdich Farms near Freedom, east of Watsonville. Apple pies seasonally.

Ikeda near Auburn on the highway to Tahoe. They have great pies all year round.

Machado, across the highway and a bit east of Ikeda. Apple pie somewhat seasonally.

Can anyone suggest other favorites???

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  1. Several years ago, I had a dog at the cancer hospital in Santa Cruz. Before a visit, I stopped at the Corralitos Market, I purchased an apple pie as a gift to the hospital staff. On subsequent visits, staff members sought me out to thank me for the pie (they didn't make a fuss over the pizzas or bagles I brought on subsequent visits) so it must have been a good pie. It was from Scotts Valley, I don't remember the name, and it weighed 4-5 lbs.

    1. They make great pies at Duarte's in Pescadero.

      1. There is a well known bakery in Berkeley that has supposedly the best apple pie, but it's like $35 for a pie. I can't recall the name or the location, perhaps chowhounds can help.

        2 Replies
        1. re: homecookin'
          Robert Lauriston

          Sounds like Crixa. Deep-dish and 12 inches so it's 10-12 servings.


          1. re: Robert Lauriston

            The Crixa site also has a reprint of an article from a newspaper that did a taste comparison of apple pies from Fat Apple's, Lois the Pie Queen, Montclair Bakery, Grand Avenue Bakery, WalkerÂ’s Pie Shop, Virginia Bakery, and Hopkins Street Bakery (link below).

            The best apple pie I ever had in the Bay Area was at The Grove on Filmore a few years ago. Don't know if they still carry it.

            I like Sconehenge apple pies that are sold at Berkely Bowl.

            The Grubstake always gets kudos on the board for its housemade apple pie. I wasn't wowed. It is a good piece of apple pie, but of the strusel top variety. I like a crust on top.

            Since you mention All Northern California, I'm sure someplace in Sebastopol must have a good pie. Apple Hill on the way to Tahoe has some nice pies, but I don't remember specifics. Fall season only.

            For what it is, Marie Calendars makes a decent enough apple pie. I like the apple cranberry when they have it.

            When the New Englander in me gets a craving for apple pie, the closest thing that will satisfy it at this point is Downtown Bakeries's apple turnover. Perfect apple filling and a butter based crust which I favor. They can be found at the Saturday Ferry Plaza Market.

            And ... it ain't pie, but I had the most INCREDIBlE, most MEMORABLE apple strudel ever at Mases (next to Saul's on Shattuck) in Berkeley.

            It was everything I usually dislike in strudel ... all wrong ... but WOW ... wow.

            It was light. It was elegant. It had the most delicate filo crust, which I've never liked before. The apple/cinnamon/sugar filling was only barely sweet and just the right balance. So if you like apple desserts and you are at Mases, I highly recommend it.