A longtime decor store in Arlington that specializes in Christmas items is adding a festive new perk: an in-house pie shop.
Called Dasher Pie Co., it's opening inside Decorator's Warehouse, a store at 3708 W. Pioneer Pkwy. that's been selling Christmas decor and lighting in Arlington for 30 years.
"This was a company my parents David and Kathy Hanson started 30 years ago in their garage," says owner Kristin Black. "Everything we've done has been based on service, and I think that's why we're flourishing at a time when the retail world is having trouble. We thought Dasher Pie Co. would be a fun offering, to go along with everything else we do."
Once upon a time, the store did have a tea room. When that moved out, Black says they saw they could fill that space with a complementary concept.
"Christmas is what we do, and what goes better with Christmas than coffee and pie?" she says. "We love pie, and we'd see customers come in with drinks from other coffee shops. We thought, why don't we provide that?"
They're working with Gold Ribbon Confections, an Arlington bakery that's creating exclusive pies for Dasher, with fun names like the Dasher — a snickerdoodle buttermilk pie — and the Rudoph, a white chocolate-cherry cheesecake.
Other pies include coconut cream, caramel apple streusel, chocolate-pecan, plus seasonal pies such as pumpkin cream cheese with a gingersnap crust.
Dasher will also offer cookies and mini cider doughnuts, which are so hot right now. "We think it goes with Christmas, and we have cider on our menu," Black says.
They also have a collection of what she calls their "Fa la lattes" — espresso drinks in flavors such as coconut and white chocolate, cinnamon and caramel, peppermint mocha, and white chocolate mocha. They're also doing chai tea, and a customizable cocoa you can get in white or milk hot chocolate with choice of topping such as whipped cream, marshmallows, and cinnamon sprinkles.
The shop has about 40 seats, occupying a nook with a Christmas tree mantle; TV streaming Hallmark movies; and everyone's favorite, an instagram-ready wall with seasonally appropriate motifs.
Decorator's Warehouse sells some items themed for fall, but it is primarily a Christmas store that somehow manages to stay open year-round.
"We do close for 12 weeks at the beginning of the summer, then re-open in July," Black says. "Part of our success is in our pricing. We offer discounts during off season. But we've been around so long that there's a level of anticipation. When we re-open in July, we've just received all of our new merchandise, and it's not been picked over. Customers who've shopped with us for a long time know they can come in July to get the best selection."
"We are a destination where people spend their day shopping, and would like a place to sit down," she says. "There's a big club of people who love Christmas."