Sunday, June 25, 2017

#65 Have Authentic Key Lime Pie In Key West

Key West
Ricky having a Key Lime Soda. Heather having Coconut Cream Pie.
I have mentioned several times in the past that I am a when in Rome kinda gal so logically, when in Key West, I wanted to try some local cuisine. In other words, I was on a quest for some tasty, refreshing Key Lime Pie. I decided to go to the Key Lime Republic and Coconut Factory for my first taste of Key Lime goodness. The Key Lime Republic, also known as the Key Lime Pie Bakery is the birthplace of Key Lime Pie. It says so right on their building. Key Lime Pie was born in 1856. There is even a plaque commemorating this wonderful event.

Not gonna lie, that plaque also made me feel very young. I already loved this place and I didn't even try the pie yet. We entered the shop and began browsing all things key lime. Wow. I never knew you could put key lime in so many things. There was key lime taffy, key lime rum cake, key lime coconut patties, key lime mojito mix, key lime truffles, key lime salsa, key lime cat and dog treats, key lime lip gloss, key lime lemonade mix, and key lime meatloaf mix to name a few items. Okay, I am kidding about the last one but I would not be shocked if a key lime meatloaf mix did exist somewhere.

After browsing, I walked up to the counter and ordered a piece of key lime pie. The pie pieces were already cut and pre-packaged. I gave the nice lady my money and sat at one of the little tables, eager to bite into my little slice of key lime heaven. With my fork, I scooped up the tip of the pie and shoveled it in my mouth. I was starving. Immediately I noticed it was very tart. I liked that. The flavor of key lime burst through my mouth engulfing my taste buds with it's crisp, citrus flavor.

Key West
Key Lime Pie Bakery

They definitely did not skimp on the key lime. If the light yellow color of the pie did not convince me of the authenticity of this being a true key lime pie, the flavor certainly did. This was the real deal right here. I also noted that this pie wasn't overly sweet, which was also a good thing. Some key lime pies are more sugar and cream with only a hint of key lime flavor. The Key Lime Pie Bakery made sure you knew you were indulging in true key lime pie. The flavor was outstanding. If I had one teeny tiny complaint it would be the crust.

The crust is just a basic graham cracker crust but again, I wouldn't necessarily log this as a bad thing. Key Lime was the star of this show. The cream, the sugar, and the crust were not intended as a mask for a mediocre key lime pie like many others I have tried. When you tasted this pie, you tasted key lime. End of story.  I totally understood why this shop was one of the top rated places to try key lime pie. I was very pleased with my choice of The Key Lime Republic for having authentic Key Lime Pie in Key West.

 Key Lime Pie Bakery
A slice of perfect Key Lime Pie from Key Lime Pie Bakery

This would be the only Key Lime pie I would have in Key West. While I love Key Lime pie, it is not something I can eat in mass amounts. I was okay with that too because I knew I had tried the best, most authentic pie on the island. That was my goal and I had successfully achieved it. I was content. My thirst, quenched. My daughter decided to try their other specialty pie, coconut cream pie. She really enjoyed hers as well.

The next day I did try a Key Lime Raspberry cupcake at Key West Cakes. Raspberry and lime mixed together is one of my favorite combos. It is right up there with blueberry and lemon. Heaven! The cupcake was huge and delectable. The flavor of key lime was drenched throughout the cupcake. The raspberry gel was tart which was a good contrast for the super sweet icing. For $3.95 I thought this cupcake was a excellent deal. I have seen cupcakes of this size go for $5 and $6 elsewhere.

Key West Cakes
Key West Cakes...Awesomeness!
Raspberry Key Lime and Heath Bar Cupcakes
Key West Cakes
Some beauties from Key West Cakes.

My heart still belongs to the local cupcake shop in Hazleton. Whipped Sweet Shoppe is in a league all their own but Key West Cakes was certainly a wonderful bakery with delicious treats and great prices. After leaving Key West Cakes I officially declared myself done with key lime. As much as I love it, like I mentioned above, I can only do it once in awhile. So, when we went to Mrs. Mac's Kitchen in Key Largo for dinner and our server mentioned their award winning key lime pie, I was not at all interested in trying it.

Who was I kidding though? This man was very convincing. Also, The Food Network and The Cooking Channel loved this place. Mrs. Mac's was showcased on several famous cooking shows including Emeril's! Okay, wrap it up I told him. If Emeril had this place on his show, I was sold. Emeril is my cooking god. I left the restaurant toting a piece of key lime pie with me that I would eat as a snack later that night. I honestly didn't think I could do another piece of key lime pie. I figured if I didn't eat it, one of the kids would. Eventually though, curiosity got the best of me. I figured I would try a few bites.

Mrs. Mac's Key Lime pie
Mrs. Mac's Key Lime Pie! Wow!!1
I walked over to the fridge, grabbed the pie, and sat at the glass and wicker bistro table in my hotel room. Reluctantly, I dived into this key lime pie.

Oh my god!!!!

I began thanking the good lord for allowing me this weak moment and accepted this heavenly piece of pie into my life. It was so goooooooood. Seriously. The pie had a sugary, pecan graham cracker crust. The key lime flavor was very strong but not at all tart. How did they do that? The consistency was less of a cheesecake texture and more of an actual cream pie. And boy, real cream was definitely used in this pie. The dollops of whipped cream on top of the pie were also made from really whipping cream.

Mrs. Mac's Key Lime pie
Mrs. Mac's decor!

What amazed me about this pie was that with all of its different flavors bursting at the seams, the graham, the pecans, the sugar, and the cream combined with it's not being tart at all, the key lime still managed to be the star of the show. You definitely knew you were eating authentic key lime pie. Part of me is so mad I got that pie because I will definitely be craving it and there is no way I will find a key lime pie like that in Pennsylvania. Dammit!

In closing, not only did I have the best Key Lime Pie in Key West, I also had the best Key Lime Pie in the Florida Keys. This bucket list accomplishment was a fun and fantastic one to achieve that's for sure.

Key Lime Hot Spots 

The Florida Keys Chronicles- My Adventures


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