“The donut gods have to be smiling on you,” says Shelburne Orchards owner Nick Cowles.
Burlington Free Press
Summer is officially over on Tuesday, but don’t cry for what’s lost – celebrate what’s to come. Fall brings innumerable simple pleasures in Vermont, with one of them being warm, sweet cider doughnuts from orchards and shops across the state. Here’s a quick look at where you can find doughnuts to dazzle your taste buds this season (Make sure to check with each regarding any COVID-19-related changes to business operations):
Cider donuts fresh from the boil wait for a toss in a sugar mixer at Shelburne Orchards on Thursday morning, Sept. 7, 2018. (Photo: RYAN MERCER/FREE PRESS)
Cold Hollow Cider Mill
Let’s start with the granddaddy of Vermont doughnut destinations, a place that in non-pandemic times draws locals and tourists alike. “One of the biggest attractions at our Cider Mill, our Cider Donut is made fresh daily all year round on our endearingly old-fashioned donut machines,” the Waterbury Center institution touts on its website.
Cold Hollow Cider Mill, 3600 Waterbury-Stowe Road (Vermont 100), Waterbury Center. (800) 327-7537, www.coldhollow.com.
The one thing that puts a smile on Eben Kassel’s face after starting work at Shelburne Orchards at 5 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 7, 2018, is that he gets to make the donuts. Cider donuts, which both Eben and his boss, orchard owner Nick Cowles, say are the best around thanks to a few tricks, most of which they refused to talk about. But paying close attention to quality, getting things ‘just right’ they say, is part of what makes a great cider donut. (Photo: RYAN MERCER/FREE PRESS)
The cider donuts at this pick-your-own-apples spot evoke cake with their texture and apple pie with their aroma. Generously sprinkled with granulated sugar, the snacks at Shelburne Orchards provide a delicate sweetness with each taste.
Shelburne Orchards, 116 Orchard Road, Shelburne. (802) 985-2753, www.shelburneorchards.com.
Champlain Orchards deals in doughnuts that come in plain, sugar or cinnamon varieties. Don’t plan on swooping in to the Shoreham business, however, if you have a spontaneous hankering next time you’re in Addison County – Champlain Orchards asks that you place your cider-doughnut orders at least one day in advance.
Champlain Orchards, 3597 Vermont 74, Shoreham. (802) 897-2777, www.champlainorchards.com.
The Champlain islands have an especially crisp feel in the early days of autumn, so head north to South Hero for the doughnuts at this orchard that grows 47 varieties of apples. Hackett’s makes cider doughnuts fresh daily in its bakery.
Hackett’s Orchard, 86 South St., South Hero. (802) 372-4848, www.hackettsorchard.com.
Fran Giroux picks out a pumpkin at Sam Mazza’s Farm in Colchester in 2012. Yankee Magazine recommends Mazza’s as a fall pumpkin pick-your-own destination in its fall issue. (Photo: FREE PRESS FILE)
Sam Mazza’s Farm Market
This Colchester staple also has greenhouses and a bakery, and that bakery produces fresh Vermont apple-cider doughnuts. Because it’s also a market, Mazza’s is a good place to stock up on other autumnal needs, including pumpkins and corn stalks.
Sam Mazza’s Farm Market, 277 Lavigne Road, Colchester. (802) 655-3440, www.sammazzafarms.com.
Burtt’s Apple Orchard
Central Vermont is a prime place to view the state’s spectacular fall foliage, so while you’re cruising around gawking at colorful maples, consider a visit to this apple, pear and cherry orchard in Cabot. Burtt’s is one of the newer entries on the Vermont apple scene, having planted its first trees in 2005.
Burtt’s Apple Orchard, 283 Cabot Plains Road, Cabot. (802) 917-2614, www.burttsappleorchard.com.
Staff writer Joel Banner Baird contributed to this story. Contact Brent Hallenbeck at [email protected] Follow Brent on Twitter at www.twitter.com/BrentHallenbeck.
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