Costa Mesa resident Jai Snowdon donned a giant kangaroo suit, downed a can of Foster's beer and began hopping along 17th Street in Costa Mesa for a publicity video shoot promoting his new bakery, Pie-Not.
After two delayed openings, Pie-Not, a traditional Australian bakery complete with meat pies, sag rolls and sweet biscuits, is set to open at the end of this week, say its not-so-traditional owners, Snowdon, 29, and Ryan Lopiccolo, 31.
Head chef Samantha Boxer, who was born in Melbourne, developed the 24-item menu and was inspired by the well-known meat pies of Beechworth Bakery, which has several locations across Australia.
"Meat pies and sausage rolls are to Australia what a hamburger is to America," Boxer said.
With Pie-Not garnering more than 650 likes on Facebook, Snowdon, originally from Australia's Gold Coast, and Lopiccolo, a long-time Orange County resident, say Americans are ready to embrace the Aussie meat pie.
"I think Americans will catch on to the idea. We're all getting sick of the Taco Bells," Lopiccolo said.
According to Food Standards Australia New Zealand, an independent statutory agency of the Australian government, the country consumes about 270 million pies a year.
At Pie-Not, every pie is handmade and crafted with a single, custom-made wooden pie press and crimper.
Pie-Not recently served 1,250 meat pies at the Newport Beach Film Festival and sold out in 30 minutes, Snowdon said.
"Ex-pats and die-hard Aussies will appreciate the Dog's Eye, Bloomin Hot, Sag Roll and Lamington," Snowdon said.
The Dog's Eye is what Pie-Not calls its standard Aussie meat pie. It consists of Angus ground beef and finely diced onions in a pastry shell and puff pastry lid.
Pies range from $5.50 to $6.50 and should be eaten with both hands.
The Sag Roll, a traditional Australian sausage roll, is made with Angus ground beef, pork, onions and carrots rolled up in a puff pastry.
Menu items also include pastries, scones, biscuits and other desserts. These items range in price from $1.50 to $4.50.
The bakery, originally set to open April 26, has been delayed twice because of building code issues but will open by the end of this week, Snowdon said.
"We spent almost two years planning this. We don't mind waiting to make a good first impression," he said.
The shop was not originally set up for commercial kitchen space so Snowdon and Lopiccolo had to put in additional plumbing and electrical wiring, causing unexpected delays, they said.
Pie-Not expects to produce 200 to 300 pies a day and will also serve Bun Coffee, an organic, fair trade coffee from Australia.
The bakery is next to Sidecar Doughnuts, 270 E. 17th St., and is set to serve breakfast, lunch and dinner from 6:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., seven days a week.
What: Traditional Australian bakery serving meat pies, sag rolls and sweet biscuits
Where: 270 17th St., Suite 17, Costa Mesa
Hours: 6:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. daily
Cost: $5.50 to $6.50 for pies. Other menu items range from $1.50 to $4.50.