The Pie Hole is in the arts district east of Japantown. This neighborhood is changing by the minute. Apartments and parking buildings are being built all around but aging industrial structures still dot the landscape. Fashion photographers and can collectors share the sidewalk as they practice their respective trades.
The Pie Hole is a modest storefront. I almost passed it by as I walked on the opposite side of the street. The interior is similarly low-key although nicely decorated with pie recipes. The staff was very happy to talk pie baking with me.
I started with a savory pie, the curry vegetable. I could smell the curry even before I cut into the pie and did it smell good. Once I got into the pie, I found that the curry was just right, strong but not too strong. The vegetables were very soft and tender. The crust was perfect in color, texture, and taste.
I finished my lunch with their signature pie, the Earl Grey. The top layer is a white chocolate that has been infused with tea. That's a great and natural combination. The tea taste is definitely present but not overbearing in any way---not a hint of tannin. Most cream pies have a fairly firm texture but not this one. The top layer barely stood up on its own, giving a sense of excitement to eating it. Would it stand long enough for me to make my next bite? The bottom of the pie was covered with a thin layer of dark chocolate and a scattering of pistachios. This pie is truly magnificent.