The pie lady with the Right Slice

Originally from Wisconsin, owner Sandy Poehnelt, aka “The Pie Lady,” knows her pies.

With a background in sales, a culinary degree and a love for making pies, Sandy has created an unique establishment. The place specializes in making pies of all kinds, both sweet and savory.

“We wanted to do one thing and do it right, so we only serve pie,” Sandy said.

“The Right Slice” was born in October 2009. It started with selling pies at farmer’s markets around the island and the Friday night art walk in Hanapepe. In August 2011 they established their current location. Even though a touch hard to find, the place is worth the visit. Flower decorated peaceful lanai welcomes you from the parking lot.

The bakery offers two main kinds of pies: savory and sweet. There are four kinds of single serving savory pies: classic chicken pot, shepherd’s, vegetarian and a daily special, which changes frequently. The vegetarian options also vary, depending on the season and available produce at the markets.

“We always try to experiment with the recipes”, Sandy said.

The pie I had was the purple sweet potato confetti ($8.25). I chose the “take and bake” option. You can either call in an hour ahead to have them bake it fresh, or “take and bake” your pie at home. For those of us that are not bakers, each pie comes with convenient directions on it. I was very proud of “my pie” when I baked it right. It was flaky and delicious.

“We want them to be fresh, not keep them in the warmer. We want people to have a fresh bakery experience, not a convenient store buy,” the owner said when I was a little disappointed that I couldn’t have one right away.

However, after eating one fresh out of the oven, I understand why. It makes all the difference when it’s freshly baked.

The place also offers family size savory pies, serving six to eight people, which need to be ordered at least 24 hours ahead.

On the sweet side of the pies there is a wide selection of sizes and flavors. You can choose from mango lilikoi, tropical banana, macadamia nut, blueberry pina colada, chocolate coconut macaroon, lilikoi cheesecake and over 50 other flavors. Their deep dish family size pies serve up to 12 people ($30-38) and the baby size- four to six ($17). If you are like me and like to try different flavors, you would enjoy the Menehune pie bites ($2 each or 6 for $10).

The Right Slice has one retail location at 1543 Haleukana St., in Lihue is open  from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, but their pies can be found on all sides of the island.

“We realize that people living on the island do not like to drive, so we want to make it convenient for them. That’s why we hit a different spot on the island throughout the week,” the owner said.

Tuesdays they are at Waipa Farmers Market from 1:30- 3 p.m. Wednesday at the Kukuiula Gourmet Market in Poipu from 3:30 to 6 p.m. and Fridays at the Hanapepe Art Festival.

The pies could also be enjoyed every first Saturday of the month at Kapaa Art Walk and every last Saturday — in Kilauea.

“I try to make it a good place to work along with serving the community. We can make most any kind of pie given enough notice. We try to accommodate different dietary needs, by offering choices such as gluten free and no sugar added options,” Sandy Poehnelt said.

With Thanksgiving around the corner, the place is busy in preparation. All special orders must be in by 6 p.m. the Monday of Thanksgiving week. Extra pies will be available Tuesday and Wednesday but not guaranteed. The bakery will be closed for Thanksgiving weekend, reopening Monday, but will still be at their market locations.

On Sunday after Thanksgiving they will participate in a special event at the National Tropical Botanical Garden 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

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