Oksana Lusnikova, the owner of Pie Style Bakery, immigrated to Tacoma more than three years ago and, at first, found herself terribly homesick for her native Crimea. Then it occurred to her that, while she couldn’t physically transport herself back home, she could bring the cuisine of her home to America. And Pie Style Bakery was born.
Lusnikova’s mother and grandmother showed her the art of dough-making and taught her how to bake assorted breads and pastries from scratch, stuffed with an infinite variety of fillings. Now, she offers these Eastern European treats from her tiny storefront in Auburn, with an inviting array of pastries, piroshkis, and pies filled with meat, fish, cheese, and vegetables — along with decadent fruit- and mousse-filled pies and desserts. She’s become known among Tacoma’s veggie and vegan crowd as a purveyor of tasty fare, like her whole-grain piroshki stuffed with broccoli, green onions, and lentils — a refreshing change of pace for lunch or dinner.
“We bake simple, delicious food here,” she said. “I don’t bake with additives. It’s important to me that this is healthy food.”
The whimsically decorated interior of the bakery expresses Lusnikova’s love for baking and her culture. She’s built a following of folks who stop by for a “to-go treat” on a chilly day, served with a piping hot latte.
“I put love in every pie and piroshki,” Lusnikova explained. “These are the tastes of my childhood, when my relatives instilled in me a love for baking dough. People try our goodies, and I know they taste the love — my customers make wonderful sounds when they take that first bite.”