There is something about unloading your trash and clutter at Southern Landfill and then foraging at the dump shop that builds a good pie appetite. So after our tip trip this morning we headed to Jo’s in Brooklyn. Jo’s Bakery has been open for around five years and has become a pie institution in Wellington, with plenty of loyal regulars.
Pies cost around $6.50, but are bigger than your average. The lammingtons and Cornish pasties looked excellent, but there is only so much I can justifiably buy with a family of my small size. And we all know that dump trips, while feeling like exertion, are really just glorified Sunday drives. So I stuck to my core business of pies.
As usual, Christian tried a mince savoury and had polished it off well before we’d made it home. It was generous and I’m guessing an excellent flavour, because he then tucked straight in to the potato top pie.
A good potato top pie is, I think, one of the unsung stars of New Zealand pie culture. A meal to keep you going, coupled with the double carb comfort of pastry and potato, it can’t be beaten. Jo’s version is an excellent one, with a rich mince filling and a creamy topping, piped on to ensure some good crunchy ridges.
Next we tried the butter chicken pie. While it lacked any chilli or discernible cardamom flavour (two things I usually like in this curry), the sauce was delicious, and the pastry perfectly flaky. This pie feels cleverly well-suited to a broad Kiwi palette, with its rich sweetness, mild curry spice, and generous amount of meat.
Finally we tried a vegetarian pie, filled with orange kumara and mushroom in a creamy sauce. This was a really moreish pie, flavoured beautifully with garlic and thyme, and my favourite of the lot.
Jo’s is open 7.30am-3.30pm, which speaks very precisely to the hours it’s culturally acceptable to eat a ready-heated pie from a bag in Aotearoa.
With no doubt this is a top pie stop in Wellington, and a great little bakery all round.