Which pie is ka pai?

updated By Taroi Black

One of New Zealand's most iconic foods, the pie, has been judged in 12 different categories in search of the supreme pie in New Zealand. Leading the pie-judging panel for Bakels New Zealand Supreme Pie is Ngāti Porou's food expert Tim Aspinall.

Chief Judge Tim Aspinall says, “The bulk of the pies are taken through a process where they're checked by visuals first.”

Before pie lovers succumb to the temptation of the classic kiwi pies, they're assessed by 40 judges.  More than 5000 pies are sorted through over a nine-hour period.  

“The volume of the pies that we judge increases every year (200 - 300 every year).  A number of people that enter from gourmet pie makers to manufactured pie makers you name it. All sorts of different makers and it just step up their lives and their productions.”

The Bakels New Zealand Supreme Pie competition has been running for 21 years. This year, however, TV chef Sean Connolly is taking part in the game of pies.

TV personal Sean Connolly says, “There are centuries of knowledge here in these pie makers.  All these guys have been pie bakers for many, many years. So I'm really, really interested to know more about pies.”

The Supreme pie maker will be announced next Tuesday.