Popular The Centerville Pie Company | Centerville Pie Company Reviews | Centerville Pie Company At Cape Abilities

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We drove for about 5 miles before we hit on a stretch of road with a few strip malls, and we pulled into a parking lot with a pizza joint, intending to stop there.But then the small Centerville Pie Co. sign caught my eye, and there was no chance we were going to settle for pizza pie.

This place was a real jewel. We ate delicious food cooked right in front of us at the grill. I had a fabulous fresh spinach and cheese quiche, the baby had grilled cheese with tomato, and my husband ate an omelet. The owner/head baker then came out of the kitchen with fresh flaky turnovers for us. She said we'd be her guinea pigs for a new recipe she was testing, and we gladly accepted the job. They were buttery, warm, flaky cherry-filled delights.

The pies aren't cheap - you pay for quality - but they're not outrageous by any means. Compare them to the price of a decent pizza and suddenly they seem like a bargain.Two interesting back stories: Apparently Oprah discovered these pies while she was in town for a Kennedy funeral, and has been having them sent back to Chicago ever since. Also, Centerville Pie Company has a collaboration with CapeAbilities, which helps provide jobs and other services to folks with mental disabilities - which means these excellent pies provide a great community service, too.

Winfrey made the pair’s chicken pies famous in August 2009, when Broadley delivered some pies to the Cape hotel room where Winfrey was staying. Oprah and her friend Gayle King, who were in town for the funeral of Special Olympics founder Eunice Shriver, raved about the pies on air, and Centerville Pies soared from selling 30 pies a day to selling 80 to 120, with a week-long wait. After the publicity boost, Bowen and Broadley needed help, and Cape Abilities Director Larry Thayer proposed renovating and expanding a kitchen and employing as many of 30 disabled workers to make pies. The two women had been Cape Abilities volunteers for years.

That story apparently impressed Winfrey, who decided to include the Centerville entrepreneurs in one of the Ultimate Wildest Dreams episodes that are capping her 25th and final year as a TV talk show megastar.Cape Abilities, which provides services and jobs for as many as 300 people with disabilities, funds its $10 million annual budget with donations and grants, but mostly by paying its own way, running a few businesses and working on piece work for companies and government contracts.But Winfrey has something bigger in mind.

On her show yesterday, she told Broadley and Bowen that Harry & David’s, the gourmet food company based in Medford, Ore., would help produce the chicken pies and carry them in millions of Harry & David’s catalogs, alongside other delectables such as Oregold peaches and Royal Riviera pears. And, for every two-pack of pies that the company sells for $40 (plus $19 shipping), Harry & David’s will donate $1 to Cape Abilities.


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