We had a great cherry orchard adventure this weekend at Hentze Family Farm. This fruit is my co-author’s favorite and they rate in my top 3. The farm hosted a festival on Saturday, but we went a day later.
We proceeded directly to the retail shop thinking we’d just pick up a few varieties and drive home. Amy had heard of a special dark variety and inquired about them with the clerk. We were informed that they indeed grow them, but they were in the orchard only and that we’d have to pick them ourselves.
With a farm-provided red gallon bucket each we marched out to the nearby orchard. What an incredible experience. A field packed with many dozens of thriving large trees absolutely loaded with perfect fruit. We went hunting for this special variety and along the way passed many other types we could not resist sampling.
When we were done, we had picked about 8 pounds worth. On the way back we found more exquisite Raniers (my personal favorite) and added them to the buckets. At the shop, we added a full lug (20 lbs) of pre-picked Bings.
Amy has since pitted and dried our self-picked cherries, and they turned out great. These will find a variety of uses over the next few months. The Bings will meet their maker tomorrow.
If you’re in the area, get out to Hentze’s and pick some for yourself before the heat takes them away. Pick-your-own’s are a steal at just one buck per pound. The farm is open until 6:00 PM daily.