Clever Girl of The Moment: Emily From I Heart Pies
If you’ve been following our posts on any level you’ve probably figured out that we have a bit of a sweet tooth. Anything pretty, covered in sugar, and tied with a bow is on every one of our Top 10 lists, and baking is a hobby we love to indulge.
In addition to our own personal love for baked goods, it’s pretty clear that the artisanal food industry is wildly popular, with new small businesses popping up every day, and food bloggers, meet ups and events becoming a weekly thing in cities all over the country.
One local company we love here in LA is I Heart Pies. Owned by husband and wife duo, Emily and Nicholas Cofrancesco, I Heart Pies specializes in, you guessed it, delicious local, organic and seasonally fresh ingredient filled pies. What more could you want?
Since this is Lady Clever, and this IS the Clever Girl of the Moment, we’re going to focus a bit on Emily to find out more about this amazing business. (Sorry Nicholas, we heart you, but it’s girl talk for now.)
After graduating from Le Cordon Bleu as a pastry chef, it was pretty clear to Emily that owning her own bakery was the direction she wanted to go. So in 2007, she launched I Heart Pies.
On any given weekend, you can find her at local farmers markets, foodie events, or making a delivery for people in SoCal, so we can get our fix of her delicious pastries when we need it!
What made you decide to create an all pie baking company as opposed to a traditional bakery?
When I was younger, I read somewhere that you should sell one thing, really well. So when Nick and I decided to make pie to sell to our friends for Thanksgiving, the concept was born.
How (social media, events, etc.) do you connect with fellow young entrepreneurs?
Connecting with other young entrepreneurs is very important to us. We meet them at different events and farmers markets all over town. It’s a huge relief talking to them and realizing you are not the only crazy person working intense long hours for your dream.
In what ways do you promote I Heart Pies that are unconventional?
We actually don’t do much promoting. Besides shout-outs on social media and lots of pop-up events, it’s mainly word of mouth. Our customers like what they taste and refer us to their family, friends and co-workers.
How did you end up with your awesome logo?
When we asked our graphic design friend, Christopher Lee for help with our logo, he asked us for a list of characters/creatures. In that list we had an octopus. Chris created and envisioned the awesome Mr. Octopie!
How have you built such a strong fan base?
Because we have such a small team, we are in contact with each one of our customers, making each experience with I Heart Pies personal. I believe this helps our customers feel good about where their pies are coming from and who created them.
What is your most unique flavor combination?
We have some really interesting flavor combinations. Two of the most unique are: Butter Beer Pie and Purple Forest Pie. The Butter Beer Pie is based off of Harry Potter’s famed drink. We take a speculoos cookie crust (Belgium spiced cookie), handmade butterscotch mousse, butter flavored whipped cream and top it all off with limited edition chocolate Pop Rocks. It’s pretty magical! The other awesome pie we created is called The Purple Forest Pie. It’s made with a speculoos cookie crust (Belgium spiced cookie), one layer of speculoos mousse and topped with a layer of black currant mousse. The black currant mousse is made with black currant jam made directly from the currant farm, Cherry Hill Farm in Springfield, VT.
Where do you find inspiration for new flavors?
We are always looking for new pie flavors. Nick and I like to keep our menu fresh, so when we have some time to test, you can find us in the kitchen.
Where do you see the future of I Heart Pies? What is the big dream for your company?
We would love to open a store in Los Angeles. Going beyond that, we never stop dreaming. Only the future knows what opportunities will pop up for us.
I Heart Pies delivers their pies locally, but also ships their amazing brownies and cookies nationwide.
Check them out at IHeartPies.com.