As American as Apple Pie

15 10 2008

This weekend I found myself in the area of Ramona while on a Men’s Retreat at the Oakbridge Camp, which is a beautiful place.  A tradition some of us have while there is to go to Julian on our free time and get some pie.  Fall is the perfect time of year to get pie since it’s apple season, and the Julian Pie Company really knows how to put those apples to work!

I bet you can guess where the Julian Pie Company started…  Yep, right there in Julian, but they’ve become so popular for their delicious pies that they have another store in Santa Ysabel (literally right down the road), and they even ship their pies to SoCal grocery stores.  When we go to Albertson’s they usually have a table right up front loaded down with Julian Pies.  So obviously, you can try the pie in the comfort of your own home, but if you’re looking for a fun, romantic, or adventurous Saturday or Sunday activity, we recommend taking the drive up to Julian and making a day of it since it’s a scenic one-hour drive from San Diego.

As you walk up to the Julian Pie Company, you might catch the scent of different kinds of pies baking in the oven, or you might catch the scent of the BBQ place nearby.  Either way, your nose is in for a treat!  The store itself is fairly small, with most of the property dedicated to the deck and patio seating; we’d suggest going around to the back for quiet, shaded, garden-like seating.  When you enter the front doors, the first thing you’ll see is the big glass-windowed pie display.  Go ahead and take a few minutes to pry yourself off the glass after trying to decide which type of pie you want.  To give you a head-start, check out the brief list of pies below.  For most of the pies you have the option to order by the slice, or whole, and you can even get some varieties unbaked so that you can just pop it in the oven and let the scent fill up your home.

To make a day of it, try the BBQ place nearby, or one of the other restaurants, or just bring a picnic.  You might also want to visit one of the nearby wineries, Orfila has a tasting room a couple miles down the road, or just continue NW on Main Street and follow the signs for a more local winery.  There are also plenty of B&B’s there, and Main Street is just a fun place to take a stroll and browse the shops.  If you’re into hiking, there’s lots of trails in the area, so stop by the Julian Pie Company to refuel after your adventure.

So here’s a quick rundown of some of their pies:

Organic Apple; Natural Apple; Apple Mountain Berry; Peach Apple; Pecan; Dutch Apple; Boysenberry Apple; Strawberry Rhubarb; Cherry.

They also have Roast Beef and Chicken Pot Pies.

Seasonally they have:

Pumpkin; Chocolate Chip Pecan; Pumpkin Apple Crumb (tried it, it’s great!); Mincemeat.

Our favorite pie they make is the Caramel Apple Dutch.  It’s apple with caramel mixed in, crumb topping, with extra caramel sauce on top.

If you like toppings, try one of these:

Cinnamon Ice Cream; Vanilla Ice Cream; Sharp Cheddar Cheese (so good melted over apple pie); Fresh Whipped Cream; Cinnamon Sauce; Warm Caramel.

They also offer other tasty treats like Apple Nut Bread, Cinnamon Rolls, Wunderbars (double chocolate over beanut butter crunch), Cider Doughnuts, and more.  If you like your pie with coffee or tea, they can meet your needs, but also try their fresh-squeezed Cider.

So plan a day trip, or stay for a vacation, just don’t miss out on the Julian Pie Company while you’re in Julian.

Here’s the quick rundown:

Hours:  9 AM-5 PM, 7 days.

Decor:  Think modern rustic poineer.  There’s an olde-tyme feel to it, but more as a rememberance than an intentional style.

Address:  2225 Main St., Julian CA 92036, or 21976 Hwy. 79, Santa Ysabel, CA 92070, or click here to find a store near you that sells Julian Pies.

Phone:  760-765-2449, and yes, you can call ahead.


Cost:  $2.95-$3.95/slice, 12.95-14.95/whole.  The average cost of things you might buy in Julian is more than it should be, but if you’re planning a day trip, we’d recommend saving up some cash and really enjoying yourself while there because it’s just fun!