NC Mountains Apple Pickin’

After making the apple crisp dessert the other week, I have been itching for a trip to the mountains to visit an apple orchard. Eric and I went with one of my old roommates several years back and I haven’t been back to one since. I googled apple orchard and what do you know… Sky Top Orchard is the first hit. Seems pretty popular. So I decided I was going. After finding out that this place was also only 36 mins away from Tupelo Honey Cafe, I knew another stop was mandatory.

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If you have seen my post from another trip I had to Asheville, you will see why I love Tupelo Honey Cafe so much. I’ve been back twice more since that trip and every time the food is out of this world. I loved it so much that I bought the cookbook and I am actually making a black bean burger from from the cookbook this week for dinner. I’m seriously obsessed. Luckily, we are getting one of these restaurants in Charlotte in the coming months. Let me tell you, I will be first in line.

We invited my mother-in-law on our day adventure as well, and I’m so glad we did. I am very fortunate to have a mother in law who is amazing. We have so much fun hanging out. So off we went bright and early Saturday morning up to the mountains. We got to the Orchard right at 9 am which was when they opened. Note to others: that is the way to do it. The place was packed by the time we were ready to leave. So getting there early is the way to go if you want a peaceful experience and not one with a bunch of crowds and chaos.

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You would not believe the amount of apples they had. I was blown away with just the large selection of apples in the front store. Once you are ready to pick some apples, they hand you a map of the farm. Looking out from the store, you can see apple trees for days. Plus there are so many different types of apples. Apples I have not even heard of.  They even have a sample table which is a great way to try all the different kinds of apples. We just wandered around the orchard picking apples as we chose. We ended up picking several different kinds.

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Eric loves Granny Smith apples, so we got a good amount of those for him. We also got my favorite apples: Fuji; love me some Fuji apples. Then we picked up a bunch of random apples in twos including: Rome, Cameo, Arkansas Black, and Pink Lady. I’m sure we will not be able to tell the difference now between all of the apples, but we picked the nonetheless.

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After picking apples we headed back to the storefront where we browsed through all the jams, jellies, butters, and apples. They also have fresh apple cider and apple pies. We all bought cider but Eric’s mom bought an apple pie (I need to ask her how it was). It looked mighty tasty!

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But the best part of the trip is the apple cider doughnuts. OMG… you walk up to the stand to purchase doughnuts and the heavenly smell of sugar and fried bread is in the air. It’s enough to make anyone salivate. I of course had to buy a dozen and it took all I had not to eat them all while holding the warm package in my hands. Ohh they are delicious. Eric and I had several with apple cider for breakfast the following day. You HAVE to heat them up. They are 10X better warm. Throw them in the oven at 200 degrees for about 10 minutes and its sheer perfection in your mouth.

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The views at the top of the orchard were also wonderful. You can pick your apples while enjoying the mountain views in the background. The air was crisp and the leaves were just beginning to turn. The skies were overcast which all came together to make a perfect day for apple picking. I plan to make it a tradition to go up there every year. And hopefully with Sarah and James, Eric’s sister and boyfriend. This is an experience that everyone should have. Nothing like a day in the NC Mountains.

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We went home with 10 pounds of apples each. Now I’ve got several dishes in mind this week with all these apples. We are having apple, fig, and Gruyere cheese paninis this week, apple based salads, grilled apple, and I may even make some apple cinnamon buns with whatever is leftover next weekend.

How are you celebrating fall?

Wedding Planning at the Vineyards

Sorry it has taken me so long to add a post. Life is getting the best of me at the moment. So much to do!

I had originally planned to share a Strawberry Cupcake recipe with you guys but… it didn’t turn out as great as I had hoped. It tasted good, but the icing was a mess and ended up being more of a drizzle consistency instead of whipped. I’ll will attempt them again and hope to share a good recipe with you soon.

Eric and I visited Childress Winery this past weekend. This will be the place of our wedding for those of you who don’t already know. I had forgotten how truly gorgeous the whole place is. I cannot wait to share it with all of my friends and family.

Eric and I visited with the Caterer and Chef regarding the menu for our wedding. We got to sample and let me just tell you, it’s going to be delicious. I cannot find one thing that I don’t love about Childress.

After our meeting Eric and I decided to stick around for the live music for a while. During the summer months Childress has live music under the gazebo from 1 PM to 3 Pm for visitors to enjoy. Eric and I bought a bottle of wine from the bar (I originally wanted a wine slushie, but this bottle of wine turned out amazing). We decided on the Cabernet Franc.

Description: “This medium bodied red starts off jammy, with black cherry and clove notes before settling down and developing some interesting chocolate and coffee aromas. It is filled with young berry flavors and the finish isearthy yet elegant.” Aka AMAZING.

We had a wonderful time. I cannot wait to visit this place years from now after we are married. It will be our own special place. 🙂

More pictures for your personal enjoyment, including some of Eric and his “sexy” poses. 😉

P.S. All of these pictures (minus the ones that I am in) were taken on Manual Setting and no touch ups. I’m pretty freaking proud of myself. Haha

Man Cave will be coming soon….. You WONT want to miss that. It’s a guarantee. 😉