Monday, September 19, 2011

Apple Picking at Pine Farms Orchard

On Saturday I fulfilled one of my Fall Friday Five list items and took my son apple picking.  As soon as the sun came out on Saturday morning, we packed up our son and headed out to the orchard.  We decided to try Pine Farms Orchard, in King, Ontario, because it's close to home.  What's more, admission is free. 

The farm's general store and café

An employee greeted us at the entrance and asked if there was a specific type of apple we were looking to pick, and since I wanted Macintosh and Spy, he sent us to rows 72-76.  The farm has over 5 000 trees, and a dirt road winds around the rows.  We drove our car to the set of rows we were looking for, parked on the side, and walked up and down the rows, picking apples.  Each row is labeled with the apple variety.

What makes this particular farm an excellent choice for children (and short people like me) is that the trees are all dwarf varieties!  That means that they're only around six feet tall, so they don't require ladders for picking.  In fact, the fruit grows low enough that even my son could pick apples without anyone needing to pick him up to reach!

At first I was worried that the fruit wouldn't be the same size as that from regular trees, but nope, full size apples!
They looked so yummy and juicy, my son couldn't resist and ate two "baby" apples while my husband and I were still picking.

After filling two very large bags with apples and paying for them, we stopped by the small playground area and let my son expend some energy before enjoying a snack purchased from the gift shop.  The pies were obviously off limits, but the candy apples were gluten free and apparently, delicious!

He also found the time to make a new friend.

I would highly recommend this place for anyone looking for a spot to apple pick in the Greater Toronto Area, especially those with young children.  It doesn't have a bunch of bells and whistles, but it doesn't need them.  We spent about two hours there, and my son was happy and entertained the whole time, surrounded by nature.  

The café is also worth mentioning.  They sell homemade pies and pastries, as well as homemade soups and lunch plates.  The pastries and pies are not gluten free, but they looked delicious!  To be honest, my son was happily chomping down on his candy apple, so we didn't ask about GF options in the cafe.  My husband and I each enjoyed a take out soup (they served it in coffee cups for us to enjoy outside).  I had a butternut squash soup, and my husband enjoyed a Thai coconut curry soup.  Both were delicious! 

This will definitely become a yearly tradition!

Pine Farms Orchard
2700 16th Sideroad
King, Ontario L7B 1A3
(905) 833-5459

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