Why Copenhagen is giving thanks to the American Pie shop

Your visit to sample their sweet and savory pastries could very well be the day that you die

In Denmark, there’s a saying that goes something like this: “January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, November, November, December.”

It’s meant to convey that November – that sleepy, grey month between the autumn colours of October and the Christmas joviality of December – seems to last forever.

But November in America means something quite different – it’s a time to come together, talk over a slice of pumpkin pie, and give thanks before carving the Thanksgiving turkey.

My, my, Miss American Pie
The American Pie Company’s shop at Skindergade 25 is where you should go if you want to experience that spirit of the American holidays.

The cafe, which opened four weeks ago, is the brainchild of American residents Erin Eberhardt Chapman and Grace Wilson Løvig.

Having lived in Copenhagen over a decade each, they met early on in their stay, bonding over their feeling of homesickness through their love of American food traditions.

It was this love that led them to penning two well received Danish-language books on American cooking: ‘American Pie’ and ‘American Diner’.

“Owning a pie shop was an idea we had since the beginning, but we had no idea how to go about getting it done,” explained Chapman.

Then, last Christmas, after returning from the States, they spoke to Dorte Prip, a Danish woman with a love of all things American, who urged them to get started, saying she would sort out the business side of things.

And the American Pie Company was born.

American hygge
American hygge

In the spirit of the season
When I arrived, in the spirit of the season, I immediately ordered a slice of cream cheese pumpkin pie. It was moreish, with just the right amount of spice, and served with a healthy dollop of whipped cream.

“There’s no other way to eat it, in my opinion,” said Løvig.

During the interview, we were interrupted by tons of people looking to order pies for Thanksgiving. Although the shop has only been open a few weeks, it already has regulars: a mix of both Danes and internationals, of which a lot are Americans looking for a way to celebrate Thanksgiving in Denmark.

“I’ve got 26 orders for Thanksgiving pies and we’ve also received frantic calls from people asking where they can source turkey for their Thanksgiving day feasts,” said Løvig, laughing.

“We’re open on the day and offering specials: turkey pot pie and pumpkin pie. There are so many expats who live alone – they get homesick and need someone to spend the day with.”

Kom til min Tak Givnings fest
But it’s not only the Americans getting in on the action – more Danes are celebrating the holiday than ever before.

“A Danish girl recently came into the shop and asked to sample three different slices of pie. She was planning on throwing a Thanksgiving feast for the first time, but couldn’t decide on which pie to serve. I thought that was so cute,” Chapman said, smiling.

“Thanksgiving is becoming increasingly popular here. There’s no ulterior motive, no presents, just a day to come together and give thanks,” said Løvig, explaining the holiday’s increasing appeal beyond US shores.

“It’s been nice for us to reconnect with where we came from and share it with people here. We wanted a welcoming place – a place where people can walk in and be greeted with a smile and a ‘How’re you doing? We also wanted to preserve American food traditions. If you’re happy eating our food, we’re happy.”

Amen, sisters.