*This is a hand pie review
There aren’t a ton of places in Michigan that serve hand pies and not pasties. While I’m not rating the hand pies at Harwood Gold Store & Cafe, I still wanted to get the word out on their business. A lot of the local pasty shops near Petoskey and Charlevoix have shut down in recent years.
Harwood sells frozen pasties, but they come from The Pasty Oven, something I noticed a bit more in 2022. It seems like The Pasty Oven has begun distributing to a lot of places south of The Bridge and it wouldn’t be surprising if they started showing up in grocery stores near the Detroit area.
Harwood Cafe is a nice spot in downtown Charlevoix. After making maple syrup since 1898, they decided to open the Cafe in 2016, which mainly features the hands pies and coffee. The Store has a lot of local products, namely a bunch of maple syrup variations from their farm.
The hand pies aren’t as similar to pasties as others I’ve had. These ones are on another level, as the beef option I had featured “Cabernet Sauvignon-braised beef brisket with carrots and peas,” which is nothing like any pasty you’ll find in Michigan.
I came around lunch time on a Sunday and the hand pies weren’t fresh. I assume they are made a certain day or two in the week and then heated up when needed. That resulted in a somewhat flaky crust that didn’t have much to it. It was kind of hard and I could tell not freshly made (it took a few extra minutes for them to heat it up).
The insides were good, which wasn’t surprising given the ingredients involved. If you like beef brisket with veggies and a wine-gravy sauce, you can’t really go wrong. Of course, these were fairly small and left me wanting a pasty. If you’re looking for something similar to a pasty, these hand pies would be good for lunch.
(Visited Fall 2022)