Greensboro’s Pie Lab // Living the “Pie” Life

After spending 14 years of my life in the Tuscaloosa area, I have prided myself in being fairly familiar with all of the noteworthy eateries within an hour radius of T-town. Despite being a dietitian, I have quite the sweet tooth and am often in search of the perfect dessert. I’ve had colleagues casually mention the Pie Lab in Greensboro, but had quickly dismissed it as a place that I should stop by if I ever had a reason to be in Greensboro. In all my time living and existing in Tuscaloosa, it wasn’t until this past weekend that I had a very specific reason to be in the tiny town of less than 3,000 people.

A few girlfriends and I had been invited to speak at a Women’s Conference at First United Methodist Church of Greensboro. Upon finding out the location of the event, I started to get excited thinking about the impending opportunity to try Pie Lab. It wasn’t until we arrived for lunch that day that I realized I had completely lacked in my previous idea of what the Pie Lab was. In my head I had imagined it to be a small little bakery in a small town serving up dessert pies exclusively. Walking into Pie Lab my idea of a bakery quickly transformed into one of the most welcoming ambiances of a restaurant I had ever seen. Exposed vintage brick walls, farm tables, and abundant natural light radiating the restaurant quickly erased any former ideas I had of Pie Lab. My ears perked up from the busy nature of the restaurant including several folks in line to order lunch and boisterous laughter coming from each and every table, ranging in parties of two to ten.

Though someone yelling that personal pepperoni pizza was the lunch special of the day, I couldn’t help but dart my head around the restaurant looking for the actual dessert pies on the display. I wasn’t able to see anything immediately near the order counter so I surrendered to looking at the regular food menu to decide what kind of lunch I was in the mood for. Anticipating that I was definitely going to have dessert, I went on the lighter side of the menu and opted for a combination of chicken salad, fresh fruit, and garden salad with balsamic vinaigrette. I followed up my order by asking them to send me the most photogenic piece of pie they had, no questions asked on my part.

It wasn’t long at all before my table of ten quickly received their orders, ranging from pizza, to salads, to soups and grilled cheese sandwiches. I appreciated the ample portion sizes of each of my lunch components, ready to take the first bite of chicken salad on a cracker. The resulting flavor was the type of chicken salad that makes even the cracker taste amazing. The contrasting sweetness of the fruit followed by a great bite of salad confirmed that I had made the best lunch choice. Though I was surrounded by the pizzas a few of my friends ordered, I knew the thing I was most interested in was having a bite of pie a little later in my meal.

Soon after polishing off my chicken salad plate, a server brought out the most generous slice of Oreo pie I had seen in my life. In fact it was so big, I convinced my friend Brooke to share it with me. Bite after bite, I realized why Pie Lab had become an international foodie destination for so many people. The balance of perfect creaminess and sweetness without being overly rich was impressive. Another friend ordered the buttermilk pie which left me with a bit of nostalgia of Christmas holiday gatherings.. Having the realization that Pie Lab actually delivers pie orders to the Makers Market in Tuscaloosa felt like the best news I had in a long time.

Overall, I believe that Pie Lab is worth the short trip to Greensboro for a dessert and meal of gastronomic proportions. The pride that the owners and staff take in the restaurant is hard to ignore. If you’re in search of the last piece of Americana, Pie Lab is your next destination and will always stay on your list. Pie Lab is located at 1317 Main Street in Greensboro, AL and is open Wednesday through Sunday. Tweet us @ThePlanetWeekly and let us know where you are eating!

Sheena Gregg, MS, RDN,LD is a registered dietitian and local “Thrifty Dietitian.” Follow her on Twitter @TheThriftyRD


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