Do you have any fall traditions? I started a new one this year!
I’ve heard about Apple Hill for many years and I’ve been wanting to go for a while. Located about 90 minutes from Napa in Placerville, Apple Hill attracts people from all over northern California and is known for its gorgeous views, bountiful apple harvest, and great photo opps.
And who doesn’t love an opportunity to try apple beer, apple bbq sauce and pick out pumpkins?!
My friend Stephanie was finally able to get Alice and her family and I to commit to a day to head up to Apple Hill for some family-friendly fun. We decided to meet at Boa Vista Orchards, one of the many orchards in the area, and decide our plan for exploring Apple Hill once our group was all together.
Apparently, we weren’t the only ones with plans to buy all apple everything on a Sunday; the place was packed! Steph, her hubby and their adorable baby showed me around while we waited for Alice and her brood to join us. The entire shop was a celebration of fall’s best offerings: I saw apple doughnuts, apple beer, apple bbq sauce, apples by the 10 lb box (I jumped on that!), apple cider, frozen apple pies, apples. apples. apples. apples! Despite the heavy focus on apples, there were quite a few non-apple items to shop for, like kitchen supplies, veggies and fruits, sauces, and more. Plus, Boa Vista Orchards also had the walkway lined with craft booths, which were quite easy to get distracted looking at. Steph and I did our shopping, loaded up our cars and met up with Alice’s family for some seriously amazing corndogs.
Our next move was to head over to El Dorado Orchards so the kids could ride the train. Little did we know there was so much more to do! Kids activities also included panning for gold, watch a magic show, face painting, and eating sweet treats. Okay, who am I kidding? The adults were also excited to try the homemade Dutch and traditional apple pies ala mode.
Finally, we drove over to Cardanini’s Pumpkin Patch, which is easily the best pumpkin patch I’ve been to. We let the two kids who could walk run amok picking out pumpkins. Seeing as this was the last task of the day, the kids didn’t last very long. We took some adorable pictures of Steph’s new family and of Alice’s three kiddos. It was so picturesque out there!
That’s a lie. I couldn’t carry it all. Luckily, Boa Vista Orchard had carts for me to lug all of my apple stuff to my car.
Here are the recipes I’ve made to use up my 10+ lbs of apples:
- 1 batch of my Crockpot Applesauce
- 1 Brown Butter Apple Pecan Upside Down Cake
- 3 batches of a delish apple cider sangria (recipe to come!)
- 1 apple crisp (my mom made with most of the apples I had leftover and we only had to throw out two that were rotten!)
The butternut squash was used to make my Roasted Butternut Squash and Bacon Soup, which is out of this world, and somehow my pumpkin is still alive/not rotten. I’d say it was a very successful trip to Apple Hill. I’m so excited for next year!