This year's pie awards were dominated by entries from the North Island, leaving some questioning why the mainland - traditional pie territory - didn't have a bigger slice of the action.
But one of the South Island's top chefs reckons the shortfall is because their pie shops are busy enough and they don't want the secret getting out.
Of the 539 bakeries that entered this year's Bakels NZ pie competition, a massive 82 per cent were from the North Island leaving some questioning where the rest were.
Top mainland cook and creator of one of the country's first world famous pies - a smoked fish creation - Fleur Sullivan, said the island's residents are spoiled for choice with top-quality pies and thinks the lack of entries was because bakeries are flat-out with the customers they have already.
But owner of Jimmy's Pies in Roxburgh, Dennis Kirkpatrick, said it might be bakers' anxiety about sending their creations via courier.
Asked whether it might be that the quality of the pies are just better in the North Island, Kirkpatrick said: "No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no."
Creator of two pies which made it into top tens, Glenn Ross, also said it wasn't the quality of the product or the ingredients holding mainlanders back from entering.
"I think everything we do is better than the North Island," he joked.
His bakery, Pierces Home Bakery, had two pies which made top tens - a peach melba in Gourmet Fruit and lamb and mint in the Gourmet Meat section.