Decorator’s Warehouse in Arlington anoints itself as the largest Christmas store in Texas.
With 60,000 square feet of sparkling holiday cheer, who would argue? As shoppers wind their way through the store, they encounter 25 different Christmas themes and more garlands, wreaths and nativity scenes than Cousin Eddie could count (but, there's NOT a Christmas Vacation theme, which is a suggestion I'd like to throw in the box).
This year they added a pit stop for weary shoppers to refuel — the Dasher Pie Company.
Decorator’s Warehouse owners Kathy and David Hanson started this mecca 30 years ago. Their daughter, Kristin Black, said visitors come in from all over the world, including a yearly visitor from Dubai.
When asked about an estimate on the number of visitors, Black said the parking lot has 700 spots, and on weekends during November and December, each one is taken. Based on that, she estimates they get a couple thousand people through the doors on those days.
So, pie! All those shoppers most definitely need sustenance in the form of pie and coffee.
The Dasher Pie Company is nestled deep inside the bosom of the Christmas kaleidoscope, in the far corner of the store. The menu includes a Hot Cocoa Bar, Fa-La-La-La Lattes, Santa’s Jolly Water, cookies and pie by the slice or the whole shebang.
The Hansons partnered with local pastry chef Maurice Ahern to provide the sweets. Ahern owns a baking business, Gold Ribbon Confections, which has a very touching story behind it. Ahern's son passed away from cancer when he was only 7 years old. A portion of his pie sales goes toward helping children fight cancer.
The woman working at Dasher Pie Co. the day I was there said Prancer is their most popular selection, a coconut cream pie. The namesake Dasher is a snickerdoodle buttermilk pie, and Rudolph is a white chocolate-cherry cream cheese. Finally, Mrs. Claus is an apple pie with a streusel topping.
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They also have cookies and mini cider donuts. If you ask for a “small slice,” they take that as code and give you double for $8.99 (one slice is $4.99). They also have other flavors that aren't on the menu board.
In April, Decorator’s Warehouse closes its doors for three months to reset and restock the entire store, with new themes and such. Lots of such. Emphasis on such. Some much such.
What did I buy? One package of ornament hooks. Color me overwhelmed (in a festive way). But we like to go just to simmer in it all. And eat pie.
Dasher Pie Company, 3708 W. Pioneer Parkway, Arlington. Open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Sunday.