The Centerville Pie Company is a Massachusetts-based pie company located on Cape Cod. Founded in 2009 by long-time friends Laurie Bowen and Kristin Broadley (“The Pie Ladies”), the local pie shop was thrust into the national spotlight shortly after they opened their doors when they were discovered by Oprah Winfrey.
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In the spring of 2009, Laurie, a former deputy sheriff, and Kristin, a former banker, opened the Centerville Pie Company in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. These pie lovers baked their sweet and savory offerings at home before moving the operation to a small, 18-seat bakeshop. "You can't beat a pie," Laurie says. "It's a good thing. It makes a lot of people happy."
After setting up shop, Laurie and Kristin began making a steady stream of new customers happy with slices of everything from chicken to pecan pie. Then, in August 2009, an unexpected out-of-town visitor put their bakeshop on the map.
Oprah and her best friend, Gayle King, were in town attending Eunice Kennedy Shriver's funeral, and Kristin set out to give them some comfort in the form of a chicken pie. So she boxed one up and drove it over to Oprah's hotel.
Although security normally doesn't let Oprah accept edible gifts, Gayle convinced them to make an exception. Good thing they did...the pies were a hit! However, when a reporter from the Cape Cod Times called Harpo Studios to confirm that Oprah had tried Centerville Pie Company's chicken pie, the corporate office denied the claim. Thus, the scandal Oprah affectionately calls "pie-gate" began.
Soon after, Oprah called the Cape Cod Times and cleared up the story herself. She confirmed that she did, in fact, try the chicken pie and loved every bite, putting an end to "pie-gate."
"I don't tell everybody at Harpo every time I buy a pie," Oprah says. "But I fell in love with these pies."
After Oprah dished about this tasty chicken pie, Centerville Pie Company's business began to boom. They went from selling 20 to 40 pies a week to selling 100 to 200 pies a week!
When Oprah learned that Kristin and Laurie dream of selling their pies to people around the world, Harpo producers put in a call to Harry & David, a company that sells gourmet gift baskets, fresh fruit and hundreds of other edible items to more than 3 million customers a year. Laurie and Kristin may not know it, but their wildest dreams are about to come true...
"The folks at Harry & David tasted your pies, and they love them as much as I do," Oprah says. "They want to sell your pies in their catalogs, on their Harry & David website and in all their stores nationwide! You get the profits, and a percentage of every pie sold will go to Cape Abilities."
"Absolutely!" Kristin says.
And there's more! "Your chicken pie—this fantastic pie—is going to be Harry & David's November pie of the month," Oprah says.
Practically speechless, all Kristin can say is, "Wow."
Oprah encourages pie lovers to try the creamy gravy, tender chicken and flaky crust for themselves. "Each pie is chock-full of so much chicken, I've got to tell you, you won't believe it," she says. "Order two or three, and put them in your freezer."