BEST OF THE REST
Baker Uri Scheft mashes up two holiday favorites—pie and babka—into one glorious confection at Union Square's bustling Breads Bakery. Braided into a round tin, the loaf ($35, pictured at right) boasts the best of both: the chocolate and Nutella-laced brioche stays moist and light, but there's plenty more of the burnished crust to go around.
Instead of pear, the bakers at Nine Chains — a spin-off of The Farm on Adderley — turn to its smaller, tarter cousin quince, which they sweeten with honey. Order by Nov. 20 for pickup on Nov. 25 and 26.
Despite its name, the Tarheel Pie ($35) at Pies 'n' Thighs is more like a giant fudgey brownie. Pecan-studded batter is poured onto a pie crust and baked until firm on the outside, but still rich and gooey on the inside. All orders must be placed by Nov. 25.
Can't decide on a flavor? Hill Country's pie box lets you mix-and-match six mini pastries ($4.50 each), with flavors that range from classic apple to boozy offerings like salted margarita and whiskey buttermilk.