Monday, October 27, 2014

A Donut Quest and a Germaphobe's Nightmare ...

This past weekend, given that rare conjunction--gorgeous weather and an empty calendar--I set out to find something fun for Arizona and I to do, and came up with a visit to a local cider mill. From the website, it seemed to check all the necessary boxes:

Cool history for Arizona ... It has one of the country's oldest steam-powered cider presses still in use. Check.

Cool machinery for Arizona ... Ditto, with demos at 11, 1 and 3. Check.

Something for me ... Can you say freshly baked apple cider donuts?? CHECK! And I'm into old, cool stuff with demos, too. 

The morning began with a power outage that foiled our bacon-and-egg plans, but we're nothing if not flexible. We discussed breaking out the camp stove or sparking up the fire pit ... then we said "screw it" and went out for breakfast. Thus fortified, we did some chores and then headed over for the late demo and to score some donuts, the mention of which had earned a raised eyebrow from my beloved.

Arizona: Apple cider donuts? I didn't know there was such a thing.

Me: You'll love them. And if you don't, I'll eat yours. (No, autocorrect, I didn't mean 'I'll eat you.' That's a very different blog post, thankyouverymuch!)

Upon turning onto the proper road, we came upon cars parked on both sides of the and pedestrians jamming the road. Goodness. This was more of a thing than I had realized! We did some maneuvering, wedged the Roo into a safe-seeming spot despite my suckitude when it comes to parallel parking, and flung ourselves into what turned out to be a cider demo, free wine tasting, free hard cider tasting, a farmer's market with goat products, honey, and all sorts of other local stuff, a live band, and an incredible-smelling building with huge lines for the donuts. Wheee!

The cider-pressing demo rocked so hard that I didn't take any pictures, I was too busy watching (old stuff is cool!), but once we got in the donut line, we had time to look around, listen to some music, get to know our neighbors in line, and generally check things out. And I saw a couple of things I thought were pretty funny. For one, here's the line for the free wine tasting:

The railing on the left is the start of a twenty-foot ramp leading up to the wine booth. Decent line, right? Well, here's the back half of the donut line we were standing in. There were this many people again between us and getting into the bakery.

And there was another, similar line on the other side of the building!

Once we got closer, we were funneled between huge crates of these babies:

Which is cool, right? Hey, it's a cider mill. Why not buy some apples while you're there? And at sixty cents a pound, can you say bargain? Except that the slow-moving line gave us plenty of opportunity to watch every child between us and the bakery (the ones that had been playing in the driveway gravel and licking kettle corn residue off their fingers) reach in, pick up the apples, show each other the squishy spots, maybe toss them around, and then, when a line-glazed parental unit did a "put that back!" drop them in the nearest crate and scamper off. 

Me: Can I borrow your phone?

Arizona: Sure. Why?

Me: I want to get a picture of this. (My dumbphone sort of has a camera, but I can't actually email myself the resulting photos. Fortunately, hubby has a real phone.)

Arizona: Again, why?

Me (snapping away): Because this is a germaphobe's nightmare. Kind of like those ball pits at Chucky Cheese. Just think of all the people who have touched these apples, and where their hands have been! Kinda makes you want to wear a hazmat suit, maybe use a black light.

Arizona (looking suddenly jaundiced): Do those apples go into the cider, do you think?

Me: It's pasteurized.

Arizona: What about those worm holes? Can you get parasites from apples?

Me: Note to self--Don't joke to hubby about contaminants the day after watching a Monsters Inside Me marathon, especially when Ebola is in the news.

The donuts, by the way, were the bomb. As was the hot mulled cider. And Arizona is sold on both of them, cooties and all!


  1. Apple cider donuts (really, apple cider everything) are the bomb! Sounds like an awesome weekend - I was scared for a sec that you guys left without getting the goods on account of the germs! LOL

  2. Maybe he'd like a purple UV disinfecting lamp for the holidays? And yes, kids are excellent vectors.

  3. Thought an apple a day helped keep the Dr. away?

  4. If 2 comments show up I'm sorry, but I'm a bit dysfunctional today.

    Dalton - It only works if you wash it. I also prefer to change it to "An apple cider donut a day keeps the Dr away."