Edible Everson

Good to Go Meat Pies

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The journey from Bellingham to Everson isn’t a dauntingly long one, but for one reason or another, the time between when I thought about revisiting the small Whatcom County town to the cloudy fall day I actually pulled up in front of Good to Go Meat Pies seemed to stretch on for quite a while.

Owner Holly Bevan-Bumford didn’t seem concerned that the invitation she’d first extended to me in mid-August was only now being acted on. Instead, she urged me and my chauffeur to come in from the cold and proceeded to tell us the story of how she went from being a stay-at-home mom to the head honcho of an ever-growing eatery specializing in half-moon-shaped meat pies, traditionally called pasties (pronounced pass-tees).

Although she spent most of her youth in Everson, Bevan-Bumford, 50, was born in Michigan, where the making and serving of the savory offering is closely connected to the turn-of-the-century copper-mining industry. In fact, the pasty first originated in Cornwall, England, when the wives of miners would tuck the portable meals away for their husbands to eat while they were stationed below the earth’s surface. Since their hands often carried traces of arsenic, the miners would hold the pasty by the tip of the crust, then throw the crusts away (so as not to poison themselves).

“The tradition came with the British,” Bevan-Bumford told us, before sharing that when it came time for her to find a new adventure in her life, family and friends in Michigan pointed the way toward helping her decide on utilizing the pasty as Good to Go’s main staple.
“It continues to be a really good traveling food,” Bevan-Bumford noted. “I also wanted to offer working families in the area something other than pizza for a quick dinner.”

It’s worth pointing out that, since she first opened in January 2012, Bevan-Bumford has done what she could to integrate local ingredients into her recipes. The beef pasty ($7.50) is made with Farmer Ben’s grass-fed ground beef, and if the potatoes, carrots, onions, rutabaga and fresh parsley needed to round out the meal are available from nearby farmers, she’ll buy what she can from them.

Looking around the small storefront, it’s easy to see the edible ethics aren’t just limited to the pasty menu. The turnovers available the day we visited were made from Cloud Mountain Farm Center apples, the barbecue sauce was created by (and named after) her nephew Ty, and the bags of Casey’s Coffee for sale were sourced from a friend down the road.

“It’s amazing how small town this small town really is,” Bevan-Bumford said with a laugh. Still, with cross-border traffic coming from Canada, she and her staff hope that at least a few of the thousands of cars that travel through Everson every day will make a stop at the Main Street hub.

We’d skipped lunch, so by the time we’d been filled in on the background of Good to Go Meat Pies, my date and I were pretty hungry. We’d been told the pot roast pasty and the pork empanada pasty were the bestsellers, so we opted to try them both, plus added a beef pasty for good measure (all meat-filled pasty menu items are $7.50, and the veggie pasty and broccoli cheddar pasty are each $6.50. Both can be purchased fresh or frozen).

Although a bowl of gravy and sides of barbecue sauce were also provided, we’d soon learn that, although they added richness to the bites of gustatory goodness, we could do just fine without them—especially if we happened to find ourselves at the bottom of a mine.

“I don’t know why anyone would ever throw the crust away,” my companion said in between mouthfuls. And, when asked to provide a favorite, she shrugged and quickly said, “well, all of them.”

Although I greatly enjoyed the zing of the jalapeno-infused empanada pasty and the rich, ale-braised chuck in the pot roast pasty, it was the beef pasty that stole my heart—maybe because it reminded me of the shepherd’s pie my mom used to make.

Later, when I’d returned home with the leftovers and a still-warm chicken pot pie for my boyfriend, he took the unmarred pasty and dropped it on the butcher block from the height of a couple feet.

“It didn’t break!” he said before grabbing it with both his hands and taking a big bite. He proclaimed it to be delicious, and said he wished Good to Go Meat Pies would’ve been around years ago, when he was working in Everson at a nearby mill.

“That really puts a bristle in a man’s beard,” he added, promptly clearing his plate of both the leftovers and the chicken pot pie pasty. “Probably a few crumbs, too.”

More Food...
Fungi Feasts
Mushrooms gone wild

I typically hear from fungi enthusiast Erin Moore when the days have shortened, the nights have cooled and seasonal rain has come to the Pacific Northwest. That’s when the longtime Northwest Mushroomers Association member reaches out to remind me about the club’s annual Wild Mushroom Show,…

more »
A rousing roundup

Although the original Oktoberfest was held to celebrate the 1810 marriage of a couple of German royals—Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig and his blushing bride, the Saxon-Hildburghausen Fraulein known as Princess Therese—it has since spread its partying proclivities far and wide. Following…

more »
Brunch Alert
No shortcuts at the Birch Door Cafe

Buttery, silky-soft pancakes that melt in your mouth. Sweet blintzes filled with creamy ricotta and topped with berries. Apple cinnamon pancakes that emerge from the kitchen three inches high and dripping with sweetness. Next time you’re up for an indulgent weekend brunch, make sure you…

more »
Book Group Mixers

5:30pm|Village Books

Bringing history into sharp focus


Fall Craft & Antique Show

10:00am|Northwest Washington Fairgrounds

U.S. Citizenship Class

6:00pm|Lynden Library

Balkan Folk Dance

7:00pm|Fairhaven Library


7:00pm|Sylvia Center for the Arts

The Women of Lockerbie

7:00pm|Lynden Christian High School

Summer Bike Stories

7:00pm|Cafe Velo

Young Frankenstein

7:30pm|Anacortes Community Theatre

Bellingham Farmer’s Market
Fall Craft & Antique Show

10:00am|Northwest Washington Fairgrounds


7:00pm|Sylvia Center for the Arts

The Women of Lockerbie

7:00pm|Lynden Christian High School

Young Frankenstein

7:30pm|Anacortes Community Theatre

Wild Things

9:30am|Stimpson Family Nature Reserve

Book and Bake Sale

10:00am|Lynden Library

Grand Opening and Open House

11:00am|Social Fabric

Books and Bites

1:00pm|Blaine Library

Clean Eating

2:00pm|Cordata Community Food Co-op

Coffee Tasting

3:00pm|Camber Cafe

Food Not Bombs

4:00pm|downtown Bellingham

Art Night

5:00pm|SpringHill Suites by Marriott

12 Minutes Max Auditions

5:00pm|Firehouse Performing Arts Center

Amber Sky CD Release Party

6:00pm|Presence Studio

Gore & Lore Tours

6:00pm|Historic Fairhaven, downtown Bellingham

Falliday Vintage Market

6:00pm|Port Transit Event Center

Family Story Night

6:00pm|Fairhaven Library

Wild & Scenic Film Festival

6:30pm|Lincoln Theatre

Poetry Party

7:00pm|Mount Baker Theatre


7:00pm|Village Books

USA Dance


Thriller Dance Class

7:00pm|Moles Farewell Tributes

Halloween Movie Night

7:00pm|BHS Performing Arts Center

Friday Night Flicks

7:30pm|Van Zandt Community Hall

Sanford-Hill Piano Series

7:30pm|Performing Arts Center


8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Holding the Light

8:00pm|Honey Moon

Bellingham Farmer’s Market Trove
Fall Craft & Antique Show

10:00am|Northwest Washington Fairgrounds


7:00pm|Sylvia Center for the Arts

The Women of Lockerbie

7:00pm|Lynden Christian High School

Young Frankenstein

7:30pm|Anacortes Community Theatre

Book and Bake Sale

10:00am|Lynden Library

Gore & Lore Tours

6:00pm|Historic Fairhaven, downtown Bellingham

Falliday Vintage Market

6:00pm|Port Transit Event Center


8:00pm|Upfront Theatre

Harvest Happens

8:00am|Bellewood Acres

Lynden Breakfast

8:00am|VFW Hall

Ferndale Breakfast

8:00am|Ferndale Senior Center

NSEA Work Party

9:00am|Terrell Creek

Scarecrow Stuffing Contest

9:00am|Garden Spot Nursery

Twin Sisters Farmers Market

9:00am|North Fork Library, Nugents Corner

Landscape stewards work party

9:00am|Chuckanut Center

Pumpkins 4 Pajamas

9:00am|Lakeway Fred Meyer

Anacortes Farmers Market

9:00am|Depot Arts Center

Pumpkin Patch on Rails

9:00am|Wickersham Station

Port race ponders a wasted waterfront


Everyday Superheroes 5K

10:00am|Squalicum Creek Park

Blaine Gardeners Market

10:00am|H Street Plaza

Bellingham Farmers Market

10:00am|Depot Market Square

Bellingham Comicon

10:00am|Ferndale Event Center

Fall Family Fun

10:00am|Glen Echo Garden

Blaine Oktoberfest


Community Cider Pressing

10:00am|Chuckanut Center

98221 Studio Tour

10:00am|Fidalgo Island

Correspondence Club

10:30am|Mindport Exhibits

Enlightened Caterpillar

10:30am|Village Books

Holiday Gifts from the Kitchen

11:00am|Community Food Co-op

Crown Jewel Wilderness

11:00am|Western Washington University Bookstore

Mushrooms gone wild


Fidalgo Youth Symphony

1:00pm|McIntyre Hall

Conquering Writer's BLock

1:00pm|Blaine Library

Winter Birds of Whatcom County

2:00pm|Ferndale Library

Undersea Bubble Fantasia

2:30pm|Mount Baker Theatre

Brew on the Slough

5:00pm|Maple Hall

Community Library Celebration

5:00pm|North Fork Library

Bellingham Hoptoberfest

6:00pm|Bellingham Sportsplex

Seeds of Change

6:30pm|Edison Granary

The Great Unconformity

7:00pm|Village Books

Skagit Symphony's Gala Concert

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

Whose Live Anyway?

7:30pm|Performing Arts Center Concert Hall

The Tannahill Weavers

7:30pm|Littlefield Celtic Center

Original Comedy Night

8:00pm|Lincoln Theatre

see our complete calendar »

CWWarrenMiller Bellingham Farmer’s Market Cascadia Weekly Subscribe Ad 1 Village Books Mt. Baker Theatre Undersea Bubble Trove