Yesterday we got to experience a fun family tradition of making apple cider. I absolutely LOVE apple cider—I love it cold with popcorn, I love it hot and steamy in the morning. I just love it. For years, every fall my mom would take us up to a cider mill, Miller’s Mill in Middlebury near Shipshewana to press apples into cider.
We would wake up really early, ride sleepily to the mill, and then sip hot chocolate together while we waited for our turn to make our apples into fresh cider.
This year we brought a whole slew of people along to enjoy the experience—aunts, cousins, friends, grandparents, friends of friends. We took turns loading the apples onto a small conveyer belt that took them inside to be washed.
I also got slightly obsessed with the aged patina on the conveyer—the teal-mint, the brown, so perfect. Then once they are inside they are chopped and spread into the presses.
Then the apples are literally pressed down into the heavy press, the cider is pumped into another part of the building and filled into jugs. (You can see the line with cider coming off near the bottom right of the photo.)
The cider is then passed via conveyer belt outside where the customers anxiously await their final product! At the end you can sample the cider you just made!
My mom made a whole bunch of cider! She and my dad love to share it with people and enjoy it themselves. The Miller’s Mill is also in a beautiful location off the beaten path. It is absolute tranquility!
Here is the gang we brought down from Michigan! I think the boys were all doing “awkward smiles.”
We had a wonderful day making cider and exploring Shipshewana and Middlebury. If you are in the area and want more info about pressing your cider at Miller’s Mill, just comment and I’ll be sure to get you there info—nothing beats fresh-pressed cider!
Do you like cider? Ever pressed it yourself before?