Cut from an email to a fellow hound regarding my visit to Apple Hill on Oct 9.
The donuts and coffee at Rainbow remain my favorite part of Apple Hill. Not to be missed. Bodhaine, the organic farm, was pretty lame. They had a tiny little farmers market, seriously everything fit on one 3x8 table. Only two varieties of apples. The brewery is really good. I didnt much care for the lager--very bready tasting--but the Best Bitter on cask was very good: mellow bitterness with a great velvety body from the hand pump. Our last stop was High Hill for lunch. The BBQ chicken was good enough with its very salty rub. I really liked the macaroni salad, but didnt care for the marshmallows and coconut in the apple salad. It was horrendously crowded there, and all-in-all I dont think its a place worth stopping (though they did have a lot more baked goods and prepared food that I didnt try). We ended up buying our apples there since we didnt want to have to fight crowds anywhere else. The rome and braeberns are great. I also got McIntosh which are too mealy for eating straight, though I planned to use it for apple sauce and to mix with the romes in pies anyway. All the Macintoshes Ive had up there have been mealy like this, so I dont know if its the time of year or maybe they just dont grow well up there. Anyway, I had a good time and still think the beer and donuts are worth the trip. The crowds did seem smaller than they did when I went on a Saturday, a observation confirmed by a craft vendor at one of the orchards. So if you cant visit during the week, definitely try Sunday instead of Saturday.
I didn't buy any cider this time since I have found sources of unpasteurized cider in SF at similar prices. Rainbow's was great, though. Unforunately I didn't see any Arkansas Blacks, which I was hoping to find.
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