Monday, March 20, 2023

Life of pie

Tom Dimit is something of a Renaissance man. He holds a plethora of degrees — two bachelors, a master’s, and two doctorates in education and law. He’s a former nationally-ranked powerlifter with a self-described “neck that looked like a thigh.” And he has an envelope stuffed with ribbons from various pie contests where he whupped the competition of “sweet little old ladies.” The baking prowess he learned under the tutelage of his Aunt Dorothy is the backdrop to a life filled with achievement.

Then on October 20, 2010, Dimit, then in his early 50s, had a severe stroke. He went into a coma and doctors feared he would be in a persistent vegetative state. Although he recovered from the coma, it was evident that he could no longer function as he did before.
“My life was completely torn asunder,” Dimit said over lunch at Grumpy’s with his partner Theresa Carroll, “as a result I had to find something I could do to make a living.”

Dimit began a slow road to recovery re-learning many skills, although some skills like recognizing printed words, remain elusive. Ready to piece his life back together, he took a career aptitude test. Turns out he has a propensity for law, education — and cooking. He and Carroll decided they would start a food truck. She would read the recipes and manage the business, while he bakes the pies.

They bought a trolley and began to outfit it with kitchen equipment and some railroad-inspired gear. The name Tasteful Trolley naturally fell into place. They plan to hit the streets in August, selling the sweet and savory pies they’ve concocted using riffs on local ingredients like Grumpy’s poppyseed salad dressing and Bullfrog BBQ sauce. “I reached into my repertoire,” Dimit said. “I have a stable of very solid recipes, hundreds and hundreds of them.”

Among his recipes is a Philly cheesesteak pie, an LA fish taco pie, a barbecue pulled pork pie, as well as classics like pecan and pumpkin.
“We’ve taken different dishes from all around the country and turned them into pie filler,” Carroll said.

They plan to give a slice of their net profits (15 percent, not a “lite” slice) to a different featured charitable organization for a day, week, or month at a time. Though the food truck scene in Toledo is still modest, Dimit and Carroll are looking forward to visiting the Toledo Farmer’s Market every Saturday, area fairs & festivals, and rolling into business parking lots by request.

They christened the trolley Dorothy, after his aunt, the “great dame,” who taught Dimit the secret tao of pie. “I was the kid who kept the Betty Crocker bake set under my bed so my friends wouldn’t see it,” Dimit says. “I liked to bake, and Dorothy really taught me how to do it as a craft. It was something you didn’t putter at, it was something you did with absolute care.”

Tasteful Trolley will debut in August;
8432 W. Central Ave. 419-699-8364;

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