It is not a secret that the best pies are at Crystal Café & Catering in downtown Iola.
Now the local café has received statewide recognition.
The website travelwisconsin.com recently listed Crystal Café in the top six for “Amazing Pies and Desserts.”
The website describes the pie as: “Each individually hand-rolled and never made with canned pie filling, Crystal Café advertises ‘Pies 2 Die 4.’ This family-owned café has been passed down to a new generation, but their commitment to making the tastiest pie with only the finest ingredients remains.”
There is an art to making great pies, according to the Crystal Café’s manager and “pie lady” Jennifer Schustek.
“Jennifer was always in the kitchen watching Grandma,” said her mother Judy Bolier. “The secret crust recipe is from my mother, Ann Moerke.”
“I have never given out the full recipe – never,” said Schustek, who has been making the Crystal Café pies for over 20 years.
“What makes our pies delicious is that everything is made by hand; the dough is not machine pressed,” Bolier said. “‘You gotta get the feel of the dough,’ my mom always said.”
The pies are made with all natural ingredients and fresh fruits.
The pies are served at the café or may be ordered for pickup.
The Crystal Cafe does not “ship” pies, as www.travelwisconsin.com incorrectly stated. “They wouldn’t stay fresh enough,” Bolier said.
In the last few years, wedding pies instead of cake have become very popular. One week, Crystal Café & Catering filled an order for 65 freshly-made wedding pies.
“They also have the best breakfast in the area,” said Greg Loescher, president of the Iola-Scandinavia Chamber of Commerce.
“I like to feed people good food. I want them to enjoy it and feel good about it,” Schustek said. “Good food makes everybody happy. And, pie fixes everything.”