Top 10 BEST Cider Mills Around Detroit Michigan To Visit This Fall (2020 Guide)
by Michael Perna
on Wednesday, January 22nd, 2020 at 6:41pm.
Can you smell it?! Fall is upon us, whether we want it to be or not.
And, as people living in the state of Michigan already know, few things compare to the fun-filled experience offered by the region's famous Cider Mills. After all, who wants to miss out on the pre-Thanksgiving tradition of having that hot cup of cider along with a caramel apple?
Many of Michigan's best cider mills have also been upgraded to fuse age-old traditions with contemporary expectations, ensuring that visitors have an all-inclusive recreational experience.
As a proud native, I can say with confidence that the metro Detroit area has some of the absolute best cider mills in the world. Period. (I have a lot of pride about where I live).
In fact, I'd say that sipping a cup of hot cider or cold apple slush, along with a freshly baked maple or cinnamon donuts, at one of these cider mills is the definition of a perfect fall weekend. I can even smell it sitting at my computer!
Here, we have listed the top 10 best Cider Mills in Metro Detroit. Places that you can visit with your loved ones to enjoy a farm-fresh culinary experience along with a range of farm-related activities.
Every cider mill on this list has amazing family memories for me, going back to when I was 6-7 years old. Those memories may or may not include pushing my little sister into the Rouge River that runs alongside the Franklin Cider Mill. Not saying it happened, just that it's possible. Besides, it was a simpler time, before we knew the Rouge River wasn't clean.
So, without any further ado, here are the Top 10 Best Cider Mills In The Metro Detroit Area.
The Franklin Cider Mill is known widely for its fresh and unbelievably delicious donuts and, as their tagline suggests, being a beloved family tradition.
Established in the year 1937, families in and around the Metro Detroit area have been visiting The Franklin Cider Mill for generations. And even after so many years, it still maintains its traditional and charming appeal.
It is a nostalgic experience for people who have been visiting The Franklin Cider Mill with their parents to now visit as parents themselves.
The Franklin Cider Mill was also my family go to when we wanted a great Cider Mill, and we wanted that Cider Mill next to a river, and (per my mother of course) walking distance from the largest Mackenzie-Child store in Metro Detroit. (I don't know if the store is still there. Though their style is widely loved, it's a little too Tim Burton for me).
The Franklin Cider Mill's impressive water wheel
Starting from how they make their donuts to the cider slush to cool you down during a warm fall day, The Franklin Cider Mill's preparation style and recipes have been untouched for decades. Many of the delicious recipes they dish out are made in front of the visitors and are a joy to watch.
While here, check out the "Wheel Room". You'll know it when you see it.
Franklin Cider Mill is also among the most sophisticated Metro Detroit Cider Mills as well. It is spread out over a large area that is scenic and picturesque. On any given day there are professional photographers that make the trek from all over Michigan to visit Franklin Cider Mill and partake in its scenic beauty, nestled in the hills and surrounding woods.
Just outside the main barn, is an in-house open market selling local handmade crafts and natural foods. Many of the visitors claim the open market at Franklin Cider Mill has an authentic Birmingham shopping vibe that is certainly going to leave a lasting impression.
Some of the well-known autumn treats available at Franklin Cider Mill are:
Hickory Farms meats
Apple cider vinegar
Loving the hot foods myself, I usually pick up a few peppered jams and a ghost pepper cheese.
Visit Franklin Cider Mill For... great cider, doughnuts, and pushing little sisters into the Rouge River.
Northville's Best and Worst kept secret, Parmenter's Northville Cider Mill is only one block off of 8 Mile, and is both hard to find and can't be missed. On my way to or from my Novi office, Parmenter's is my go-to Cider Mill. For example, I love that Parmenter's is open on weekdays and everyone loves when I bring cider and doughnuts from here to the office. I can't imagine how many unfortunate people drive up and down 8 Mile road every day never knowing that Permenter's is there. Northvill-ians definitely do.
From its artsy red barn exterior to tastefully decorated interiors, Parmenter's Northville Cider Mill is one of the most beautiful cider mills in the Metro Detroit region. The aesthetic beauty of Parmenter's Cider Mill remains undisputed till date.
Parmenter's was founded in the year 1873 and rebuilt in the year 1978 after the original structure got damaged in a fire breakout earlier in the season.
Some tasty products available at Permenter's:
Hard Cider & Wine
This entry is unique to our list as the family also purchased the Northville Winery right next-door in 2006 and later added an on-site brewery in 2014. Now, one of the most popular happy hour activities in the area is the on-site wine tastings and beer sampling at the Northville Winery & Brewing Co., right across the parking lot from Parmenter's Cider Mill.
Another add-on in the range of activities offered at Parmenter's is their live music.
Visit Parmenters Northville Cider Mill For... cider and doughnuts, caramel apple bowls, and quick fixes.
THIS PLACE HAS IT ALL: Blake’s Orchard and Cider Mill has more fun activities for visitors than pretty much any other cider mill around Metro Detroit. While typing this I’m already planning my next 5 trips there (it will take that many to get it all in).
Looking for Zombie Paintball Safari? Check
Spooky Corn Maze? Check
3 Story Haunted Barn? Check
Apple Picking? Check
Cut your own Christmas Tree? Check this box too!
Looking for a 5k fun Run? It’s here!
For adults, kids, or kids that are adult age, Blake’s Cider Mill will certainly not disappoint. The vision of Blake’s Cider Mill has expanded well beyond just producing fresh cider in recent years. It has been focusing on establishing itself as a top recreational destination in the area.
Blake’s Cider Mill is one of the more contemporary cider mills and isn’t as traditional as others. It aims to cater to the needs of visitors and doesn’t shy away from offering modern treats like popcorn, pretzels, pizzas, and corn dogs. Due to this ever-growing range of activities on offer, Blake's is now one of the most visited cider mills in the Metro Detroit area.
Visitors to Blake’s Cider Mill can also indulge in their 500-acre spread apple orchards, cornfield mazes, haunted hayrides, U-cut apples, U-cut pumpkins, and more. Make sure not to miss their famous three-story haunted barn house. For adults, Blake’s Ciderhouse and Winery located in the same address offers seven different kinds of wines for sampling and purchase. Moreover, there are six different flavors of hard ciders on offer made from Blake’s farm-fresh fruits.
For families with kids, Erwin Orchards and Cider Mill - spread over 200 acres of land - is a must-visit. Established over a century ago, it is not only one of the largest cider mills in the region but also one of the most entertaining, especially for its young guests.
For example, Erwin Orchards' “Trike Trail” is a massive attraction for the kids and they offer some of the most delicious flavored fruit ciders and donuts. Speaking of donuts, they have 5 different kinds. 5 KINDS! They are:
Apple spice plain
Apple spice cinnamon sugar
Pumpkin sprinkle and salted caramel are my favs. Drop a comment below with yours!
There are also tons of activities at Erwin Orchards, including U-pick Apples, U-pick raspberries, a corn maze, pony rides, hay maze, trike trail, bouncing inflatables, goat pen (featuring Nigerian dwarf goats), a petting zoo with a llama and lambs, a HUGE sunflower garden, and more. For child-at-heart adults? Paintball target practice.
The cider at Erwin's is among the sweetest you will taste among the ciders offered by other cider mills in the region. The sizes of the donuts are also unusually large and taste delicious. Visitors have the opportunity to see an operational beehive and watch the cider being pressed to learn more about their cider-making process.
The Erwin Cider Mill’s management organizes educational tours for schools and large groups, like families and companies. Need a barn for a family party? Call Erwin Orchards, they have a barn for your event (at quite a reasonable price might I add)
Visit Erwin Orchard & Cider Mill For... picking (approximately) 847 different kinds of apples!
If you are going on a date, visit Yates Cider Mill in Rochester. Voted the most romantic cider mill in the Metro Detroit Area, Yates Cider Mill offers an unforgettable experience to its visitors.
Established in the 1860s, Yates Cider Mill is situated on the banks of the Clinton River. It adds to the beauty of the cider mill that is known to attract a huge crowd on weekends and weekdays alike.
Franklin Cider Mill and Yates Cider Mill are two of the oldest cider mills in Metro Detroit Area. Both these cider mills are not the largest compared to other cider mills in the Metro Detroit region. However, they have created their own unique place in the cider industry through tradition, culture, age-old recipes, and incomparable hospitality.
Great for the Young Ones. Yates Cider Mill doesn’t boast too many new-fangled recreational activities like some of the other cider mills. This mill was started when Abraham Lincoln was President, and they like to keep the feel as if he still is. The activities they do offer are engaging and entertaining, especially for the new humans up to elementary school.
Feeding goats and watching a variety of fudge made live at their famous Fudge Shop and the on-site petting zoo are just a few things that will cause your kids to laugh with delight. Don’t forget to buy freshly picked apples from Apple Tent located right beside the Fudge Shop.
After you have all your goodies, there’s a ½ mile River Walk along the Clinton River that’s not to be missed.
Yates Cider Mill is one of the most popular cider mills in the region and is also featured in the listing of “Fall Favorites” by Food Network. The best part is that Yates Cider Mill is open till just a few days before Christmas. If you want to stay away from the hustle and bustle of city life or are looking to buy an investment property, buying a home near Yates Cider Mill is a lucrative option.
Check out these neighborhoods near Yates Cider Mill:
Plymouth Orchards and Cider Mill opened in the year 1977. It is relatively young compared to other older cider mills in the region. It has won many awards in the cider industry in the past few years for maintaining high standards in terms of experience it offers to the visitors and quality of its products. It won the prestigious “Stanley Cup” at the annual Michigan Apple Cider Contest, which is commendable considering it is a relatively young cider mill compared to other contestants in the contest.
Plymouth Orchards And Cider Mill covers a vast area of more than 100-acres near the towns of Canton and Plymouth.
The kids can indulge in many activities here, including wagon rides, corn maze, hay maze, petting zoo, picnic area, and more. The farm market here offers many farm-fresh fruits, including apples, pumpkins, yellow raspberries, red raspberries, and more, grown in-house at Plymouth’s orchards.
The pecan, cherry, pumpkin and apple pies, as well as flavored donuts available at Plymouth Cider Mills, are to die for. One of the amenities that separate Plymouth Orchard and Cider Mills from its historic counterparts is its expansive indoor space. Even though Plymouth is relatively young in the cider business, it has been able to hold its ground firmly and continues to grow in popularity, amenities offered, and its product portfolio.
Visit Plymouth Cider Mill For... The Pecan Pie, Red Shed Market, and Live Music.
There are a few Rochester mills in the Metro Detroit area, so don’t confuse Rochester Cider Mill with it. Founded over 150 years ago, Rochester Cider Mill continues to produce its unpasteurized cider the same way it used to till date. It takes pride in its cider produce and rightly so. Rochester’s Ciders are unique and people from across the country flock in during the fall to taste the variety of traditionally pressed flavored ciders offered.
The donuts offered at Rochester Cider Mill will leave you mesmerized thanks to their distinctive taste, the result of an age-old secret recipe. The blueberry and maple donuts sell out fast, so plan your trip to Rochester Cider Mill during the early hours. Rochester Cider Mill offers a relaxed cider farm experience where the kids have plenty of open space to play while the parents settle in the comfortable indoor/outdoor seating available here.
The homey environment and friendly staff offer guests a warm and memorable experience that leaves a sweet after-taste in their memories. It is what has made Rochester Cider Mill one of the most visited cider mills in the Rochester region. The pies, donuts, fruits, and ciders available at Rochester are reasonably priced and won’t put a dent in your weekend budget.
Visit Rochester Cider Mill For... The Apple Crisp and 10 kinds of Doughnuts!
Wiard's Orchards is one of the oldest and most popular cider mills in the Metro Detroit area. Opening over 177 years ago, Wiard's now features a miniature golf course and six haunted attractions, which are particularly popular among the kids during Halloween. They have a variety of baked goods, pies, apples, donuts, and more on offer. The frozen pies available here can be taken home as well by the guests.
One of the primary reasons why Wiard's Orchards is popular among the kids is because it doubles up as a thrill park. Wiard’s Cider Mill hosts several haunted attractions, including The Asylum, Alien Caged Clowns, The Mined Shaft, Hayride of the Lost, Ultimate Haunted Barn and the Labyrinth. The Wiard’s Orchard and Cider Mill also organizes customized picnics and events for the clients, including for the families and companies.
The Country Store and Bakery at Wiard’s is where the magic happens as you can choose from a variety of delicacies to have and take home, including ciders, apple salsas, baked pies, donuts, honey, fruit jams, and freshly picked fruits. Wiard’s offers an authentic yet contemporary cider mill experience to its guests, which is the reason why it is so packed on weekends.
Visit Wiard's For... Night Terrors! Including 6 Haunted Events!
All you can carry pumpkins. Yep, you heard that right! Stop by Westview Orchards & Winery in late September for this one, and check their events page regularly for any of the other 14 events going on during the fall!
The U-pickers especially will have a great experience picking from the extensive variety of apples at Westview Orchards, including Gala, Macintosh, and Ginger Gold. The guests can also U-pick a variety of vegetables here, like cucumbers, zucchini, eggplant, peppers, green beans, and summer squash.
The Farm Market at Westview Orchards offers many different varieties of flavored ciders, vegetables, fruits, pies, and baked goods.
Westview Orchards also boasts a bakery, Modern Cider Mill, and Schoolhouse Ice Cream and Sweet Shoppe. Shopping at the Westview Orchards bakery is on the to-do list of almost all the guests visiting Westview, especially for their signature fruit flip and maple donuts.
The Westview Orchards, Winery and Cider Mill are open throughout the year, but the experience it offers during the fall is unbelievable. The acres of Orchard lands are open for on-foot exploration during the fall, which is not an option during the rest of the year. The footfall is enormous during the weekends, so if you are planning to visit Westview, weekdays offer a more relaxing experience.
They offer different packages for families and companies events and checking with them before the visit would help you plan your trip in a personalized manner. School tours, group tours, company events, family picnics, adventure tours, and more, can be organized by the management at Westview on request.
Westview is located just off Highway 53, between Romeo and Washington Township. Blake's Orchard & Cider Mill is just a 15-minute drive northeast.
One of the features at Westview that has surprisingly become popular and a visiting factor for many of the guests is its modern and clean restroom facilities, which is hard to come by in a countryside farm and vintage cider mills.
Located on the picturesque Paint Creek Trail, the Paint Creek Cider Mill is touted as the best pit stop on the trail.
The culinary experience offered at Paint Creek Cider Mill's full-service restaurant with its extensive menu is surreal. Not only does it provide the authentic cider mill items like donuts, pies, and flavored ciders, but also wraps, pizzas, sandwiches, ice creams, hot dogs, and salads.
The Paint Creek Cider Mill operated for a long time as just a restaurant before it was converted into a Cider Mill. It is currently operated jointly by Paint Creek Trailways Commission and Parks and Recreation Commission for Oakland Township.
One of the reasons why the restaurant was converted into a full-fledged cider mill was its beautiful location. The restaurant at Paint Creek has been popular along the Paint Creek Trail for years, and its cider, donuts, pies, and baked goods are worth every penny. In all honesty, Paint Creek Cider Mill doesn’t offer the most authentic cider mill experience, and neither boasts of it. However, it does make up for it by being the most worthy pit stop on the Paint Creek Trail for a quick cider fix or a delicious lunch.
The building, restaurant, and grounds are well-managed, and they are in the process of adding some innovative activities for kids this fall. The restaurant management here experiments with the fresh produce to add something exciting and creative to their menu from time to time to delight the guests.
You'll find the Paint Creek Cider Mill in the small town of Goodison, which includes the following nearby communities:
Visit Paint Creek Cider Mill For... Home Made Ice Cream and a Walk on the Paint Creek Trail!
Alright All, that's a wrap! For all you Michiganders like me, hopefully this list brings back memories of an earlier day and a simpler time. For all my readers new to Michigan, I definitely encourage you to stop by any or all of these amazing places. And to recap, here's a summary of the 10 Best Cider Mills In Metro Detroit: