Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Pot Pie Tour of 2007

As the weather starts to turn a little chilly, which here in So. California means about 68, my thoughts turn to comfort food favorites. I start to crave food that warms you up like potatoes, stew and soups.

Lately my hearty fare of choice has been chicken pot pie, which I have now sampled at three different restaurants: Mimi's, (pictured left) Claim Jumper and The Lazy Dog Cafe.

Now Mimi's, founded in CA and located through the U.S., is a homestyle, family restuarant with a French/Mardi Gras twist. They serve the best, fresh-baked breads. So I was sure that their pot pie would be hard to beat. It was full of chicken, potatoes, peas, carrots and onions but the sauce was too runny. The crust was flaky and crunchy but the edges were over done. It reminded me of a Banquet frozen pot pie. You know the ones where the edges get brown and hard while the sauce is just a touch underdone. It was still ok, just not fantastic.

Next was the pot pie at Claim Jumper, located only on the West Coast. Known for large portions I was sure this would be a meal for days, and it was. The center was very rich and creamy. I liked the sauce better on this one although it was almost too rich and it sat very heavy with the dry, thick crust. Overall a decent pot pie but not my favorite dish at Claim Jumper.

Finally, The Lazy Dog Cafe. I had never even heard of this restaurant. But a friend recommended it and the food was delicious. It is brought to you by the founders of Mimi's and is currently only in Southern California. The menu is quite eclectic with italian, mexican and chinese inspired choices. But I knew what I wanted, the chicken pot pie.

What I received was the perfect example of all that is good and holy about a chicken pot pie. The crust was flaky, soft, moist, buttery deliciousness. The inside was creamy, packed with vegetables and yet not too heavy. It was a great blend with the crust. I will definitely be back to taste this bad boy again.

Any suggestions on where to eat a good pot pie in Southern California?


Anonymous said...

There's a place that may not quite measure up to Claim Jumper and Lazy Dog Cafe, depending on one's standards, but is unique in its own right: the La Palma Chicken Pie Shop in Anaheim. It's a throwback to the 50's and 60's, but we're talking comfort food at its best - very meaty - and it's priced as if it were the 50's and 60's!

Also, there's a takeout that specializes in handheld potpies. It's called The Cravery. They're in Irvine and Tustin. Not bad, but it lacks that comfort food feel to it.

Can't wait to hear your future pot pie reviews!

Marti said...

Ooh tasty - I used to live in the North OC and have been by the La Palma Chicke Pie Shop. I'll have to check it out.

Never heard of The Cravery before.