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I don't understand the attraction of Dangerously Delicious Pies

  • d

After our meal at Centro Tapas Bar, we walked a few blocks to Dangerously Delicious Pies for dessert. I had heard of it and thought it would be a good way to end the meal, after a short stroll between restaurants.

We ordered slices of coconut chess pie, apple pie, Baltimore Bomb (Berger cookie pie) , White Trash, and pumpkin pie. The Baltimore Bomb was the favorite of the night.

The fillings were good, not as sweet as I was expecting (and prefer), but rich and creamy. The pie crust was disappointingly tough and hard to eat.

Were we there on an off night or is this a place whose name promises more than the kitchen delivers?

Dangerously Delicious Pies
1036 Light St, Baltimore, MD

Centro Tapas Bar
1444 Light St, Baltimore, MD 21230

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    1. Hey....it's a unique concept and the owner Rodney has parlayed his " rock star/ pie man" persona into a successful business. The product iteslf leaves much to be desired IMHO. A lot of style...very little substance.

      Too bad there isn't another "pie place" around. ( that I know of)

      3 Replies
      1. re: MDicecreamguy

        Blah...Afraid the only other place to get a good pie is your own kitchen. Really not brain surgery to make a oh I don't know, a chocolate creme pie/apple :/ (and it'd be 10x better)

        Not surprised either the crust tasted like dog biscuits,...

        1. re: JamesPapa

          that crust! Thank you! I am not alone in the dog biscuit opinion! yuck yuck yuck

          1. re: sarahplumley

            I would give it another try...I have gone several times and enjoyed the flaky crust. Definitely would not describe it as tough. (This is at the DC location.)

      2. There is a huge difference between the pies when Rodney makes them, and from what i have seen, everyone else. The saying goes if you give 10 people the same recipe there will be 10 different results. He is skilled at making his own pies. It seems he is just unable to pass along his skills to his bakers for whatever reason. The pies were alot better when he was making them all the time at his first store almost a decade ago.

        1. I agree with insidetrader. I had a wonderful slice of granny smith apple /raspberry pie at his old location in Canton about five years ago, but lately I've been most disappointed.

          1. i wonder if he's more often down in DC now on H st NE? i live near that location, and have loved the slices i've had (baltimore bomb, cherry, and bacon onion gruyere quiche). i haven't tried the baltimore location.

            4 Replies
            1. re: kallisti

              I also had a to-die-for slice of apple crumb at the DC location, as well as good baltimore bomb and steak and gruyere. Though the service has been abominably bad on these two occasions, the pie has been delicious.

              1. re: hamster

                weird. i've had good service all the time. but yes, delicious pie. mm. i brought a baltimore bomb to my parents' for thanksgiving.

                1. re: kallisti

                  I may have just gotten unlucky on two occasions. It was the same worker both times, and he was both over-worked and extremely inefficient. The wait was literally 40 minutes to get the pie after we ordered. Nuts.

                  1. re: hamster

                    :-0 okay, that's pretty ridiculous. I guess I've never been there when it's super crazy packed, but I don't think I've had to wait more than 10 minutes on the occasions I've been there.

            2. Yeah, I've been to the H Street location and was not impressed - it's awfully expensive for the quality. For almost $7 a slice I want it to blow away whatever I (or my Alabaman grandmother, for that matter) can make at home.

              7 Replies
              1. re: kathleen440

                I, like the OP, thought it would have been a decent pie if not for the leaden crust. Of course, that's like saying the Yugo was an awesome car if not for the underpowered engine.

                1. re: JonParker

                  Hi Jon. I have had a similar experience. Most laughably when my wife decided to pass off one of DD's as her own at a get together;) (After all a homemade pie should pass muster anywhere, right?)

                  Boy was she embarrassed when she chomped on the tough crust. Sounds like there needs to be more quality control. Maybe Rodney knows how to make pie crust but he needs to school the help

                2. re: kathleen440

                  You're right, it is pretty expensive (though isn't it like $5.95/slice rather than $7?). But for me it's not just paying for quality, it's also paying for me not having to make the whole pie and spend the time etc etc just so I can have a slice or two. Paying for quality and convenience, in other words. But I'd certainly be happier if it cost less!

                  1. re: kallisti

                    In DC the slices are 6.50 for sweet and 7.50 for savory, plus tax... so, yeah, basically $7 for a sweet slice.

                    1. re: kathleen440

                      You can purchase freshly made cakes and pie for that at the Amish Market in Upper Marlboro, and Laurel

                      1. re: agarnett100

                        Best Pie Company in Bowie makes some pretty awesome pie. The fresh berry and cream pies are particularly rich.

                        best pie company
                        13600 Annapolis Rd, Bowie, MD 20720

                        1. re: monkeyrotica

                          Thanks I have been wondering about that place

                3. For some reason, I'm reminded of the story of Cakelove.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: monkeyrotica

                    Do you mean more supervision is needed or that you purported their cake to be yours:P

                  2. If you can afford it better for you.

                    For me the value is not there. But then again I also question why people buy $4 cupcakes for $3 cup of coffee.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Soup

                      I've gone to the H Street location a couple times and enjoyed what I had. My sister thought the Baltimore Bomb pie was just awful --- I have to say it would not be one I would try. However, I will say this much ---- their goat cheese and spinach quiche is really quite amazingly good. All the "pies" are quite expensive. For me they are a "treat" rather than a regular purchase. I've used some Living Social coupons for a few pies and that was a decent deal. I plan to go back as I am intrigued by the variety they offer.

                    2. I guess I am late to the scene. I was at Mama's on the 1/2 Shell waiting for a friend (and it was PACKED). I looked out the window and saw that Dangerously Delicious Pies had opened across the street in Canton.

                      I went in there and it was empty. I had the cowboy pie and thought it was excellent. Great vibe. Good music and art work.

                      I've stopped by there a few other times (grab a cup of coffee at the Firehouse) and then roll by DDP for a slice of something sweet.

                      I haven't been disappointed yet. Maybe they've fixed what ailed them.

                      Dangerously Delicious Pies
                      1036 Light St, Baltimore, MD

                      1. Tried Dangerously Delicious for the 1st time tonight. We got a whole steak/onion/gruyere and 3 sweet slices (lemon, Baltimore bomb, mixed berry). The savory was very tasty. We were not as impressed with the sweet - the Balt bomb was the best of the 3 but just OK and the mixed berry was the worst (no one ate more that a bite or two).

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: 79pooh83

                          Yeah... I'm with all of you who are underwhelmed. At a birthday party 7 years ago when the first location near Patterson Park was open, I had a piece of DD chess pie--fabulous & flaky. It's been going down hill ever since. Most recently we visited the Federal Hill location, sat at the counter, and were treated to some of the rudest service ever. This would have been fine -- almost charming --if they'd delivered the goods, but instead, the counter chick slapped down 3 cups of bitter, luke warm coffee. We had to ask for sugar and milk which was rudely slid over without eye contact and with a grunt. Then the quiche, savory pie and sweet pie slices arrived: crust so tough and greasy, you'd swear it had been microwaved on high. No more DD for us. I was embarrassed as we'd just touted the pie as top-notch our out-of-town guest.

                        2. Our first experience at DDD in Federal Hill was excellent, and we've been chasing after that experience ever since. I've even supported them on this board. But eventually I accepted the pies would never be that way again. As mentioned, the crust is the most problematic. Last year when they started coming to the JFX market, I held out hope again. Then after two pies I gave up again.

                          We tried lots of places recommended on chowhound to find that elusive pie. We went to Baugher's in Westminster many times, even on the same day as the pies were baked. But the filling-to-crust ratio wasn't good (not enough crust), the fillings weren't fresh tasting, and they have preservatives. Sugarbakers pies can be okay, but sometimes the fillings are too sweet and heavy, and they are on and off friendly, so figuring out if pies were baked that same day is a chore. Same can be said of Sweet in Ellicott City, although Sweet's crust is flakier and Sugarbaker's crust is harder. Best Pie Company is easier to deal with than Sugarbakers, but a bit far and good on occasion but not great.

                          Eventually, I just started baking my own pies. Then last year my local Atwater's (in Catonsville) started baking pies. I had a fresh baked pie (still warm) one day and haven't looked back. Excellent, excellent flaky-but-not-too-flaky buttery crust. And the filling isn't too sweet, with the fruit shining through. As far as I understand, all fruit pies for all Atwater's are baked in Catonsville. They always bake pies on Thursdays. I will call around 1PM on Thursday and ask what pies are being baked that day. Pies come in small and large sizes. Then I will reserve the pie of choice with very specific instructions: (1) please don't wrap the pie, and (2) please don't cover the pie in any way (e.g, by placing inside a takeout box.) If the worker on the other end seems extra happy, I'll even ask if they can pick the one with more crust , less filling (can't get enough crust and bottom crust stays crispier with less filling.) Then I'll drop by after 4pm and before 6pm to pick it up. If you want the pie set enough to transport but still warm (say to eat with ice cream), you'll have to coordinate with them more precisely.

                          If you don't follow these instructions, the pies are wrapped in plastic to prevent spoilage and/or placed in a box. Both ways the crust goes limp, even if you pick it up the same day. I've tried baking those pies again to crisp the crust, but it doesn't work, especially with bottom crust. Sometimes they will leave a pie or two uncovered for a day for their more discerning customers, but I feel like some of the buttery goodness evaporates and the bottom crust still gets soggy by day 2.

                          IMO, the hassle is worth it when compared against all the nuances of making your own: keeping butter cold while making pie crust, blind baking the bottom crust or using a pizza stone, adjusting for the amount of sugar in the fruit, etc.

                          1. Have been going to the DC location and have been finding the pies to be excellent, in particular the flaky crusts. Better quality than your average Amish market pie. And better than what I remember from the DDP in Baltimore, though it's been years. They are ridiculously expensive though, I generally only go when I have a discount.

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: tarnation

                              + 1 Maybe they are inconsistent, but I have found their pies to be quite good everytime I've gone there.

                              1. re: tarnation

                                We had yummy dinner at Nacho Mamas and afterward went to the Canton branch of Dangerously Delicious. This time, the pies were really good. The crusts were not too tough and balanced the sweetness of the pies well.

                                So, I'm going to chalk up my first experience to inconsistency. Unlike Mae West, Dangerously Delicious is very good when they're good and when they're bad, they're not good at all.

                                Nacho Mama's
                                2907 Odonnell St, Baltimore, MD 21224

                                1. re: tarnation

                                  When asked in the spring, the DC DDP emphatically said they were now only affiliated with Baltimore and the loud man in the hat in name only and hoped to make better pies.