Merrick House Slow Food Pie Picnic in Pictures
Hedy Goldsmith, pastry chef at Michael's Genuine, was the Chief Justice of Pie. The other judges were: Ariana Kumpis (Ariana's Etiquette), John Critchley (Area 31), Victoria Pesce Elliott (Miami Herald), Janet Van Aken (Norman's 180), Glen Terry (King Mango Strut Parade), and Kristin Connor (Whisk Gourmet).
Pies were judged on appearance, taste, creativity, use of regional ingredients, and creative name. Taste and appearance (including runniness/firmness) got the most weight.
While the judges were ensconced inside the Merrick House, Presidential summit-style, guests picnicked on the grounds. Boy Scout Troop 7 broke ground on a new Heritage Garden, which they will officially start planting this week.
There were a few vendors, as well. Teena Borek from Teena's Pride Farm was promoting her upcoming fall CSA and selling herb plants: a variety of basils, fire sorrel, and chocolate mint. Seriously Organic, a new foraging and sourcing company, sold organic eggs from near Orlando. Family members of Whisk Gourmet's Brendan and Kristin Connor gave out free lemonade.
When the pies finally emerged from judging, they were set upon by the eager guests. The rains came, and the guests grew restless waiting for the results of the contest. The judges had to make their final deliberations and score sheets needed to be tallied (a pie contest judging app anyone?). Around 4 p.m., the scene nearly became mutinous when there were still no results, and folk singer Valerie Wisecracker began singing the fifth reprise of "Who Got the Best Pie?" (a song she composed in honor of the event).
However, this all-American afternoon was saved from a riotous end when the winners were finally announced at around 4:15. Summertime Blueberry Pie by Marlin Ebbert won first place. Second place was Moctezuma's Delight, a spicy chocolate tart with pecans, submitted by Johnn Carr. Third place was Lucila's Fruta Bomba Crème Brulee Pie by Lucila Jimenez (yes, that Lucila Jimenez). Longan Walnut Bolaraisin Pie by Robert Barnum took fourth place. Yam I Am by Carol Garvin and Passion Fruit Pie by Jana Carvin took fifth and sixth places.