Pick Your Own Apples at Sky Top Orchards

Sky Top Orchards Scarecrow

We rode up the mountain near Flat Rock to visit Sky Top Orchard, one of the most popular “pick your own” farms in Western North Carolina. There were lots of families having fun, playing, picking apples, and enjoying the scenery on hayrides…

Hayride at Sky Top Orchards, Zirconia, NC

Of course it wasn’t all fun and games for the Sky Top Orchard staff. They were hard at work making sure everything was working and humming right along…

Sky Top Orchards Farm Workers

If you’re like us and you don’t want to “pick your own” apples, there are a dozen tasty varieties in all sizes of bags, baskets, and containers…

Sky Top Orchards Apples Farm Stand

We’ve heard about the hot, fresh apple cider donuts that Sky Top Orchard makes, but it was Saturday and the line was long, so we’ll go back during the week and get some. We didn’t have to wait to buy some fresh apple cider. And when we got home we immediately poured some of the best cider we’ve ever tasted…

Sky Top Orchard Apple Cider

Sky Top Orchard is only a short drive south of Hendersonville. For an interactive Google map to Sky Top Orchard click here. If you’d like some fresh apple cakes, cider, donuts, jellies, preserves, apple butter, honey, pumpkins, gift baskets, and other other apple-related items, visit Sky Top Orchards or one of the many “pick your own” farms, orchards and fruit stands in Western North Carolina. Here’s a short list of some of the most popular ones…

Apple Hill Orchard, Morganton
Apple Mill, Saluda
Atkins Orchard, Saluda
Barber Orchard Fruit Stand, Waynesville
Coston Farm, Hendersonville
Creasman Farms, Hendersonville
Grandad’s Apples ‘N Such, Hendersonville
Justus Orchard, Hendersonville
Lyda Farms, Hendersonville
Mountain Fresh Orchards, Hendersonville
Old Cider Mill & Gift Shop, Bat Cave
Orchard at Altapass, Little Switzerland
Piney Mountain Orchards, Hendersonville
Stepp’s Hillcrest Orchard, Hendersonville

Be sure to check their websites or call for hours of operation and other information.

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WNC Farmers Market, Asheville, North Carolina

There’s only one way to describe the WNC Farmers Market on the west side of Asheville: BIG. It sits on 36 acres with multiple buildings, including a nursery center packed with plants, trees, shrubs, and a large greenhouse filled with tropical plants, ponds, and a waterfall. I only explored two buildings full of fruits and vegetables…

There are 194 spaces for farmers and dealers to display their produce, crafts, and other merchandise. Here’s what it looks like inside one of the five, open-air truck sheds…

The WNC Farmers Market holds several annual events and other fun activities during the year. Click here to visit their web site, or visit the new WNC Farmers Market Facebook page. For an interactive Google Map to the WNC Farmers Market click here.

Moose Cafe, WNC Farmers Market, Asheville, NC

While I was at the WNC Farmers Market I had lunch at the Moose Cafe…

As I headed from my car to the entrance I watched a man leaving the restaurant. He walked slowly in my direction, and when he got near he asked if I had ever eaten at the Moose Cafe. I told him this was my first time. He said, “It’s my first time, too … and I’ll never go back to Cracker Barrel!”

After I was seated inside, and without my asking, the waitress delivered a small plate with two huge, freshly-baked, still-warm biscuits. Next to the biscuits was a small stainless steel container of what she said was apple butter. While I waited for my guest I put a little “apple butter” on a biscuit and took a bite. It wasn’t apple butter. It was the best home-made apple-pie filling I’ve ever tasted!

When you visit the WNC Farmers Market, be sure to eat at the Moose Cafe and ask about the daily specials. The food is delicious, fresh from the WNC Farmers Market right next door. Once you try it you probably won’t go back to Cracker Barrel either. Click here or on the picture below to see a menu on the Moose Cafe web site…

If you’d like some of this made-fresh-daily “apple butter” of your own, you can buy it online at the Moose Cafe web site. They sell six jars for $43.00 or ten jars for $68.00, which includes shipping and handling. You can also write or call the Moose Cafe at 570 Brevard Road, # 3,  Asheville, NC 28806; telephone 828-255-0920.

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