Apple Cider, Fall Colors



Fall is a busy time. In spite of the all the rain in October, we managed to visit the cider mills a few times, indulge on cider donuts and enjoy the fall colors in Michigan. And, I still managed to do fall garden cleanup, make new pieces of jewelry and get ready for a Black Friday weekend sale at Etsy. Now that things are winding down a little, I can write on my blog again.


I hear cider mills are mostly popular in Michigan and people from other states do not understand what the big deal is. Well, all I can tell you is that it has a different taste than apple juice. Taste wise, the difference between apple juice and cider is like the difference between store bought and fresh picked tomatoes. I found two good sources that explained the differences between apple juice and cider, the first one is on AnswerBag.com, at http://www.answerbag.com/q_view/36322and the second one is at mass.gov (the Massachusetts Department of agriculture) at http://www.mass.gov/agr/massgrown/cider_juice_difference.htm

To me the difference is more than the taste, it is more like a ritual that you must perform and is only available in the fall. It is what you look forward to the whole year. Most Cider Mills provide other activities besides selling cider, such as pony rides, fudge, a place to sit down, hay rides, and etc. My favorite Cider Mill is Yates in Rochester. They are located next to the Clinton River.


What I like to do the most at Yates is to drink the cider, eat donuts while watching the river and the ducks and afterwards taking a stroll along the river walk.




Besides cider, you get the cider donuts, which is even better than the cider. They are the best donuts ever, and the bad part is you cannot stop eating them. I have to work really hard to stop after six donuts. I know you think, OMG, she is a pig, but until you have one, you cannot understand what I mean. Usually, they are warm, crunchy on the outside, soft and chewy on the inside, a real treat on a crisp fall day. You can get them with sugar on top or plain. I like plain ones myself. I found this recipe for making your own cider donuts at http://www.bakespace.com/recipes/detail/Apple-Cider-Donuts/13411/ , I have not tried the recipe myself, and so I cannot vouch for it. If anyone tries it, please comment back with how it turned out.


You can also find apple butter; caramel apples and all kinds of apple pies and of course tons of fresh picked apples. My favorite is honey crisp. I never forget the first day I bite into a fresh, crisp honey crisp apple, I thought, OMG I have gone to heaven; this is the best apple ever. I think I was pushing those apples to everyone I saw for a whole six months.

Unfortunately, I never remember to take my camera with me and take pictures, so you have to go to their web site and look at the pictures http://www.yatescidermill.com/. I think the combination of the apple smell, cider and the crisp fall fresh air is definitely worth waiting for.


So as you can see there is more to this experience than just having some apple juice. Most Mills stay open until Mid December, so checkout this site to find one near you, and take the whole family with you http://www.michigan.org/things-to-do/attractions/farms-and-mills/default.aspx . Comment back and let us know about your experience.

And for those of you outside of Michigan try these websites, maybe you can find a cider mill near you http://www.8882823483.com/cidermills/ohio.htm and http://rochester.cybervillage.com/profiles/blogs/usa-cider-mill-directory .


It is 6:00 pm in the evening, I started this post in the morning and I had intended to publish it this morning; however, all this talk about the cider and the donut got me hungry. So, we headed out to the Yates this afternoon. It was a warm and sunny day and I remembered to take my camera. Here are the pictures I took and if you go on Flickr at http://www.flickr.com/search/?q=michigan%20cider%20mill&w=all you can see even more pictures of the cider mills and the great scenery.