Relaxing in Ohio Amish Country
Berlin, OH - Events of Monday, October 7 to Wednesday, October 9, 2013
On Monday, we ran a few errands and then hung around the motor home most of the rest of the day. On Tuesday, we ran a few more errands and drove some back roads on the way back. Even though it was a little cloudy, we enjoyed seeing the many picturesque farms like the one shown below.
A lot of the farms in the area are dairy farms in keeping with the Swiss heritage of many of the early Amish and Menonite settlers. Also in keeping with that heritage, there are several places that make cheese. We ended up driving past Heini's Cheese, which is one of the local cheese houses, where we saw empty milk cans being loaded into a truck. Although we didn't stop in at Heini's this time, we have stopped many times in the past. Not only can you sample almost every kind of cheese they make, you can also watch cheese being made during the week. To read one of our earlier posts about cheese making at Heini's and to see photos, click here.
Although we had already stopped at Walnut Creek Cheese when we first arrived in Berlin, that stop was just a quick one to pick up some cheese curds and a small bag of sugar-free candy for snacks. By Wednesday, Margery had time to come up with a fairly long shopping list of bulk spices and meats she wanted to get at Walnut Creek Cheese, so we decided to head there in the morning. We had a couple of stops to make along the way. The first was at Der Dutchman Bakery for some cream-filled donuts for an after-breakfast breakfast.
The clouds from earlier on Tuesday had cleared, and a fellow was buzzing overhead in an ultralight taking advantage of the beautiful morning.
In addition to scrumptious-looking pies and cookies on the shelves in the bakery, there were rows of breakfast pastries in the display case. The donuts we like are called cream sticks. They are the long ones on second shelf up from the bottom in the next photo. They are filled with a light, fluffy cream filling that's not overly sweet and that is never gritty. They are topped with different flavors of icing, which are (left to right) peanut butter, caramel (our favorite), chocolate, vanilla and strawberry (not shown).
After we finished our cream sticks, we decided to be extra bad and split an apple fritter. They are about 8 inches in diameter and chocked full of apple chunks. Yum.
From the bakery, we headed along back roads to our second stop at Sugar Valley Meats in Sugar Creek. Sugar Valley Meats has a delicious ham loaf mix that we were hungry for, so we picked some up for the freezer.
We then headed back to Walnut Creek Cheese.
Walnut Creek Cheese has an excellent meat department. We do most of our shopping at Walmart, but the one thing we are unhappy with at Walmart is their meats, so we usually take advantage of an opportunity to stock up when we get to a place like the Berlin area that has so much variety available at reasonable prices.
Walnut Creek Cheese also has an extensive selection of bulk-packed herbs, spices and dry mixes. Prices are a fraction of what they are in the regular grocery stores.
Now that the weather is cooler, we frequently take Freeway along on our outings, especially if we will be out of the car only for short periods. We also like to let Freeway get out to stretch his legs and experience new smells once in a while. After he got to sniff all around the parking lot at Walnut Creek Cheese, we stopped for him to pose for a photo on a small farm wagon that was sitting along the edge of the parking lot.
After Walnut Creek Cheese, we headed back to the motor home where we relaxed for the rest of the afternoon and evening. We had a few more outings planned while we were in Berlin, so look for our next post.