The Gigi’s Cupcakes founder is taking a new spin with her Kitchen Aid, trying her hand now with pies, both sweet and savory.
BRENTWOOD, Tenn. — Gigi Butler sat on a blue chair looking out the window inside her shop.
Her antique bakery sign leaned against the brick wall behind her.
“I never thought I would do more than one shop,” Butler said. “I am trying to get this new baby birthed. And birthing the dream right now in 2020 is one of the scariest things you can do. But when the country is dealing with hard times, that’s when a lot of new companies figure things out and become successful.”
The Gigi’s Cupcakes founder is taking a new spin with her Kitchen Aid, trying her hand now with pies, both sweet and savory. Bright yellow cans of Crisco line the top shelf of Pies by Gigi in Brentwood. The latest concept from the top-notch baker is a two-decade dream turned reality.
Gigi Butler is an entrepreneur, author, and founder of beloved national cupcake brand Gigi’s Cupcakes. She is embarking on a new chapter with her latest concept, Pies by Gigi. (Photo: Shelley Mays/The Tennessean)
“My first love is pie, and it’s always something I wanted,” she said. “I wanted a pie shop where — my daughter and me — we can sweep the floors together and where families can come and people will feel like they are home. It’s a place where they can feel at home and peace.”
A dream in the making
The week of the opening, Butler published an excerpt from her journal in 2012 on Instagram.
In the entry she shared, Butler wrote she wanted to see her bakery desires come to life, envisioning a counter full of delicate treats and her daughter working on her homework inside the shop after school. The cursive scrawl matched what she felt eight years later.
“I have taken 20 years and have been working for my recipes for pies for a long time,” she said.
Butler traces her baking lineage back a century to her great-grandmother opening her own bakery in Oklahoma. But cooking was never a profession Butler saw herself doing long-term. Baking might be in her genes, but Butler was never trained professionally for the work.
“It’s very surreal,” she said. “This was only a dream. I have been in business since I was 15. I started cleaning in the day and singing in bars at night. Name it, I have done it.”
After her run with Gigi’s Cupcakes, her creativity mounted into her next business. Gigi’s Cupcakes started in the Great Recession in 2008. The franchise is now all over the southeast. For her next culinary adventure 12 years later, Butler thought Brentwood suited her needs.
“I wanted it to be different,” she said. “I wanted a change, and I wanted it to be more of a destination in Brentwood. I like the clientele, plus I live in Franklin. This spot was meant to be. I looked all over parts of town. I stood on the corner, and this was it. Sometimes God puts you in the place you need to be.”
What’s on the menu
After honing the fine details, Butler’s menu serves taste buds through breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Specialty sweet pies include apple all the way to lemon dream supreme. Her savory pies range from chicken pot pie to her own concoction of pimento cheese pie. Butler has also included loaves of bread, mini pies, cookie bars and scones.
Prices range from $4 to $30 for whole products.
Store hours at 330 Franklin Road are Sunday through Thursday from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Friday and Saturday from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
For more information visit piesbygigi.com/
Emily West is a reporter The Tennessean, covering Brentwood, Franklin and Williamson County. Follow her on Twitter at @emwest22 and email her at [email protected]
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