If you've been eating in L.A. the last few years, you've probably tasted pastry chef Nicole Rucker's baked goods at Fiona or at Gjelina, Gjusta, Smorgasburg or Cofax—which means you've tasted the love and care Rucker puts into her pies. Brimming with bright pops of acidity and sweetness from fresh seasonal produce, Rucker's pies are also silky smooth from butter, custard and chocolate. At her new stand inside Grand Central Market you can find some of her most iconic baked goods (light-as-air key lime pie, anyone?) as well as newer creations, such as cookie-crust pies and savory hand pies, too. Order online for Friday and Saturday pickup here.
Whether you’re bringing one to a summer picnic or skirting dessert duty at Thanksgiving, there’s nothing more comforting than a pie. Lucky for us, L.A. has some excellent pies, cobblers and crumbles. Not only can you find creamy lemon meringues and classic apple pies in old-school diners, but a handful of restaurants around town have produced more creative variations—and then there are the city's top pastry chefs, who produce drool-worthy pies wherever they go, from farmers' markets to weekend festivals. Check out our guide to L.A.’s best pies—ice cream optional.