This story starts with my friend Scot (hi Scot!). I was in NYC a bit ago for work, but on a weird schedule. Still, I told Scot I was dropping by to see if it could possibly work to meet up. We’ve made weird logistics work before, so I had faith it might work out. And indeed, we decided to get a very early breakfast one day before I headed to Amtrak to train to D.C.
Scot suggested we stick near my hotel, so I went to look up options. We needed a good plan, because the last time Scot and I tried to wander and find an early breakfast in Tribeca, we ended up essentially failing: nothing was open yet! This time I turned to Yelp. When I set the “open at 7 AM” filter a few things came up- but one caught my eye right away. It was called Pi Bakerie and the minute I read it was a Greek bakery, I knew we had to go. I am a huge fan of Greek food, but aside from things like spanakopita and baklava, I hadn’t had many Greek pastries in the past. I was excited to try out Pi Bakerie and see what else Greek baked goods had to offer.
Pi Bakerie is in the south bit of Soho, pretty close to the Holland Tunnel. It’s conveniently near many subway lines, so it’s easy to get to from a good part of NYC. Let me tell you: going to this restaurant is a very good choice. It was just opening up as we got there, which meant no line and plenty of time to deliberate what we wanted to eat. We tried several things: a flaky pastry called the Egg Painerli, a piece of spanakopita, a salmon Koulouri, and some cookies to go.
Let’s start with the egg pastry. It was a most satisfying, delicious breakfast. Imagine layers of flaky dough with a perfectly cooked egg in the middle and warm cheese. It was so good, I was actually sad when I finished eating it. The koulori is closest to a bagel, with a nice taste of sesame. Our koulori had really fresh toppings on it and helped round out our breakfast feast. The spanakopita ended up being my lunch that day and I was happy it still tasted amazing hours later. It was the perfect blend of cheese and spinach inside an equally indulgent buttery shell, more like a filled pastry than the usual slice format I find with spanakopita at restaurants. And let’s not forget the cookies: I enjoyed them all, but especially liked the ones tinged with honey (can’t remember the name!)
Pi Bakerie only opened in the last year, which explains why we didn’t find it the last time we went wandering Tribeca in search of breakfast. Now that we know it’s there, we’ll definitely need to go back! I have my eye on many of their lunch-time “pi” specialties (you can see the full menu here).