It’s now been two weeks since our big move, and we’re finally getting settled. So when I heard the temperature was going to drop into “fall like” this weekend, I decided the rest of my boxes and organizing could wait. My favorite season has officially begun, and there was no better way to celebrate than to spend the day in the scenic, mountain town of Oak Glen, CA—home of the largest apple growing region in the Southland.
An hour and a half drive from LA and a mere 20 degrees cooler (53 degrees!), we found ourselves on a winding country road that leads to all things gold and delicious. Oak Glen Road is dotted with a slew of orchards, farms and stands (think a small scale Wine Country for families), but I had my sights set on Willowbrook Apple Farm, where you can pick your own apples and press your own cider. When we arrived we were welcomed by the smell of hot apple cider, so with cups in hand, we filled up our barrel with apples, tossed them into the old-fashioned cider press and started cranking. Ten minutes later, we had a whole gallon of succulent juice to bring home.
Other activities in the area include hay rides, nature walks, shops and festivals depending on the season. The food you’ll find is “country cookin”—though being from the South, I have very high expectations in this area. Next time I go, I’ll pack a picnic lunch from Larchmont Village Wine, Spirits & Cheese before I leave town and save room for one of the freshly baked apple dumplings at Apple Annie’s Restaurant & Bakery.
Want to find a pick-your-own farm near you? Pickyourown.org is a great resource no matter what side of the country you are on. From pumpkin patches to corn mazes to Christmas tree farms, it’s all at your fingertips. Now, if you’ll excuse me while I go enjoy some hot, homemade cider. Happy picking!
Willowbrook Apple Farm. 12099 South Oak Glen Road. Oak Glen, CA. 909-797-9484