The Grape Pie Capital of the World

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The Grape Pie Capital of the World

A Journey into Naples, New York

Grape pie made with Concord grapes is a regional specialty of Western New York, including the Finger Lakes region, Pennsylvania and other areas of the United States where the grape is grown as well as Ontario.

Vineyards that grow the grape, which was developed in the U.S., stretch from Western New York across Pennsylvania and into Ohio and Michigan as well as Washington state.

Grape pie is a specialty and tradition of Naples, New York, host of the Naples Grape Festival,  home to Angela Cannon-Crothersm, author of Grape Pie Season,and of Monica's Pies.

In Naples, a village of barely 1,000 in the Finger Lakes region of western New York, grape pie remains a  substantial cottage industry. Home bakers turn out the desserts by the thousands, earning it the moniker "Grape Pie Capital of the World."

Sales peak in the fall, especially when the Naples Grape Festival draws 100,000 visitors on the last weekend of September. Vendors erect pop-up stores and set up roadside stands, sometimes with a coffee can collecting cash on the honor system.

Finger Lakes continues to grow as a wine region, with 120 wineries and counting, but its Concord grapes are better for pie. Harvested in September and October, they're made into a filling that can be frozen for baking in any season.

The Grape Pie Festival just ended (last weekend), but the peak pie season continues at places such as Monica's Pies on Route 21or Cindy's Pies on Academy Street.

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