- "Look, the pie!"
- ―Queen Margaery Tyrell
Pigeon pie is a traditional pie served at wedding feasts. Pigeon pies served at weddings of the nobility can be enormous in size, as they are meant to feed all of the guests. Sometimes, very expensive weddings such as those held for the royal family may be hollowed out to contain a flock of live pigeons, who will made a visual spectacle as they fly out when the pie is first cut open.
Smaller pigeon pies are also eaten at regular meals (by those who can afford them) as one of several kinds of meat pie.
Shae offers Sansa Stark a piece of pigeon pie to try to get her to eat something, but Sansa is so griefstricken after the hearing about the horrific deaths of her brother Robb and her mother Catelyn at the Red Wedding that she doesn't have the will to eat anything.
A huge pigeon pie, meant to serve all of the main guests, is presented at the wedding feast following the marriage of King Joffrey Baratheon and Margaery Tyrell. It is served during the middle of a tense confrontation between Joffrey and his uncle Tyrion, which Margaery tries to disrupt by intervening and loudly pointing out that the pigeon pie has just arrived. As a novelty for the royal wedding, the inside of the large cake has been hollowed out and filled with a flock of live pigeons. Joffrey takes the unorthodox approach of cutting the pie open with a single swing of his new Valyrian steel sword Widow's Wail, releasing most of the pigeons but also killing a few who were in the direct path of his blade. When Joffrey dies at the feast, Tyrion sarcastically blames it on the pigeon pie.
Walking with her newly betrothed, Ser Bronn, Lollys Stokeworth muses excitedly about the plans for their upcoming wedding. She insists that they should have pigeon pies, just like they do in the capital.
In the books
In the A Song of Ice and Fire novels, it is apparently traditional to serve a large pigeon pie at wedding feasts - similar to how in real life, traditional wedding cakes are pastries made with icing. Joffrey remarked that it was considered ill luck not to eat some of the pie at a wedding (before stealing Tyrion's untouched slice).
After Joffrey and Margaery cut the pie open, Tyrion is served a piece of the pie, but he has lost his appetite and does not touch it. Joffrey snatches it from Tyrion's plate and eats it while drinking the poisoned wine. When he starts coughing, the people around think incorrectly that he chokes on the pie.
Pigeon meat tastes somewhat like beef steak, not like chicken. The reason chickens have white meat and dark meat is because the muscles they use more will become dark - domestic chickens cannot fly for long distances so their wing and breast meat stays white from lack of use. In contrast, pigeons do fly as their primary means of movement, so their meat is much more lean and dark.