I like to eat, eat, eat, apples and…apples!
But apple cider donuts sure aren’t too bad, either. 😉
Hey, friends! I thank you all for continuing to bear with me these next two weeks. With 11 days (say what?!) to go until the wedding, my head is swimming with to-dos. But I did have some down time this weekend and I couldn’t resist sharing it with you!
As pictured above, Jill, myself and my good friend Lauren got applehappy – my new word – at the Long Grove Apple Festival on Sunday. It was an absolute treat and I took nearly all the photos my memory card would allow, so I’ll keep the chattiness brief. Or as brief as I can…let’s be honest.
Did any of you ever watch Gilmore Girls? I swear that downtown Long Grove is what Star’s Hollow was modeled after. There was even a “Kirk” there announcing the ice cream eating contest! We meandered around for a bit and then came across the town’s Country Store.
The sign outside welcomed us in. I thought of a certain Mama Pea.
Once we got inside, we were overwhelmed by all of the amazing local and seasonal goodies in stock! We tried apple, pumpkin and Hallowine (click the photos to enlarge).
We ooh-ed and ahh-ed at the apple and pumpkin butters, as well as the variety of pre-made breakfast mixes. Everything from apple-filled pancakes to pumpkin peanut butter waffle mix.
Yes, Long Grove even has its own version of Honeydukes!
The selection was breathtaking. Candy corn, chocolate covered marshmallows, peanut butter and rice krispy treat cups the size of my fist, chocolate mummies on a stick, Bavarian pretzels, fluff pops with sprinkles and mint nonpareils.
The candy store was wonderful, but left our tummies grumbling! Fortunately, we soon stumbled upon the (very long) line for the Long Grove Apple Haus. Need a hint as to why the line was so long? Perhaps these can help explain.
Apple cider donuts! Oh, but it doesn’t end there. Apple Haus is also known for their brown bag apple pies and caramel apples of every variety with every topping you can imagine.
We all decided to go for an apple cider donut, which lived up to its reputation. Amazing!
Cider was also enjoyed by Lauren, a Long Grove resident and our host for the day.
After satisfying our cravings for something sweet, we continued to walk around, stopping in several small boutiques that had everything from 1950s memorabilia to Swedish chef hats. I loved watching little kids run around everywhere in light jackets. It was so quintessentially fall.
But eventually, our sweet tooth came back again.
Sweet corn. Butter. Salt. Pepper. Kernels in my permanent retainer. One of these things is not like the other, but it was definitely worth the extra diligent flossing that evening.
Speaking of corn, our wandering eventually led us to the Long Grove Popcorn Shoppe.
Look a little closer and you’ll find the most unique flavors I have ever come across! Blueberry, black cherry, strawberry? Banana and vanilla?
And just for kicks, let’s throw in a display of chocolate peanut butter fudge.
Don’t mind if I do.
Lauren ended up with a mix of the caramel and cheese popcorns, which both tasted great.
But we always save the best for last, right?
BELGIAN CHOCOLATE-COVERED RED GRAPES!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I say this with enthusiasm because I am determined to recreate these at home. They came in white, milk and dark chocolate coatings. Chocolate-covered strawberries are probably my #1 favorite dessert, but these came very close to stealing the title and were by far the best festival food I ate all day. Sorry, apples.
The rest of our journey brought us to a farmer’s market, where I couldn’t resist snapping photos.
This was definitely the best way to welcome fall in Chicago. Thank you to Lauren for the invitation! Not only did we all have a blast, but I also created a new word. Applehappy. Definite win-win.
Have you or are you planning to attend any fall-themed festivals or events this year?