You can get anything you want at Delaware County’s Just Pies in Westerville, as long as it’s a pie . . . well, except, of course, on Cookie Wednesdays.
Owner and chief baker Peter Sterk is the most prolific pie maker in Central Ohio, cranking out about 300 pies a day, a figure that increases exponentially as we head into the Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons. How many holiday pies are they making? No one has a solid answer on that, but Office Manager Rita Woeste says, “They’re stacked to the ceiling.”
Just Pies is located in Westerville at 736 Northfield Rd.
Peter opened the Westerville shop, along with the massive preparation and storage area, in 2004. He has created a cult-like following of people who refuse to show up for family functions without a Just Pies pie.
“We have one customer who lives in New Orleans and has family in Cleveland, and instead of flying straight to Cleveland, she lands in Columbus, comes here and buys 15-20 pies to take up to her family,” Rita said. “We have people from all over the country come to Westerville just to get their pies. One gentleman who lives in southern Ohio drives all the way up here, buys 15 pies, and takes them back to his assisted living facility.”
Peter grew up in Vermillion, Ohio, where he first started baking pies for his family’s restaurant in pizza ovens. He soon got to be known for his pies and a business was born.
On any given day, Just Pies has 25 different varieties of pie for sale, most of which are available in three different sizes. Just Pies also offers a pie of the month, such as Reese’s Peanut Butter Silk Pie. As the holidays approach, pumpkin pie will be a popular seasonal selection.
Peter has his fingers in virtually every pie. The ingredients are mixed by hand and the pies baked onsite. Because many of their customers are traveling with their pies, Just Pies offers frozen pies that can be taken home and baked.
Just Pies also offers pot pies – beef, chicken, chicken, broccoli & cheese, turkey, Buffalo chicken, and veggie. They are purchased frozen and baked at home.
Yes, the pies are delicious. And, yes, they are in demand. But if you want a Just Pies holiday pie this year, this is what you need to remember: Just Pies stops taking orders for pies two weeks before Thanksgiving and Christmas. All sales are first come, first served.
Just Pies usually opens at 9 a.m., but during the holiday season it will open at 8 a.m. According to Rita, customers will start lining up outside the shop at 6:30 a.m. to purchase pies, and it is not unusual to see the line stretch clear down the street. Rita suggests coming the week before Thanksgiving if you want a frozen pie.
Plan accordingly. Don’t come sashaying into Just Pies the afternoon before Thanksgiving and expect to walk out with a half-dozen pumpkin pies. You can get more information about Just Pies online at www.just-pies.com, or by calling 614.818.9300.
By: Robin Yocum