12147 Corey Lake Road, Three Rivers, Michigan (269) 244-5690

Monthly Archive: June 2017

Strawberries: in Shortcake, Pie, Hard Cider, Salad, or Just Served Fresh!

June is one of our favorite months here on the farm because of strawberry season! There is truly nothing like a freshly picked Michigan strawberry and with the amount of phone calls we are getting, it sounds like you are ready for them too!

Grandaughter Emma Grace helping us pick strawberries

So what is the strawberry story? Here’s a few chapters…

  1. Our farm, like others in Michigan, have fewer strawberries this year due to losing most of our early variety berry crop in the May frost/freeze, despite everyone’s heroic efforts to save the crop by irrigating through the cold nights. Now that they are coming in, we are better understanding how many we lost.
  2. On some of the varieties, the berries will be small. Smaller berries are actually sweeter, but they do take longer to pick (but you get more in a quart box!).
  3. We have not quite figured out how we are going to do U-Pick this year, due to the above and wanting to provide a quality experience for you.  But we do know what a treasured experience this is for so many families, so we are looking at ways we can still have berry picking this year. We need a few more days of seeing how the berries come along to make the best decision. Stay tuned and check with us next week.

We are picking berries daily for the market, $3.75 a quart, which sell out fast. So call before you come to see if we have any or we are happy to take an order and hold them for you. 269-244-5690.

  • We are taking orders for flats of 8 quarts, which will be $28. You can order flats anytime now by calling us at 269-244-5690 and we’ll call you when ready. We have not started filling any of our orders yet, but hope to this coming week.
  • U-Pick pricing will be $2.25 a quart when it is available.

What else we have on the market now:

Asparagus: This is the end, we have stopped picking for the year and when we sell out, it will be gone for another year.

Rhubarb: Available now for $2.50 a pound. If you need 10 pounds or more, please call us to order and we’ll get it picked and ready. 269-244-5690.

Greenhouse cucumbers are ready.

Greenhouse tomatoes are finally here. So plan a BLT into an upcoming meal! We bake the bread, have extremely tasty bacon from Mill Lake Farm in the freezer (I recommend the Callie bacon, it is cut thick and perfect size for a sandwich), and beautiful organically grown lettuce in the cooler. Yum!

Pretty pleased with our greenhouse tomatoes this year.

Some of our U-Pick Herbs are readyFind bags and scissors for cutting herbs around the neck of the bird overlooking the herb garden. A list of what is ready is posted at the market.

Bedding plants: All of the plants that we still have are on sale now, and we’d like them to be in your gardens! Going fast—so come quick.

Organic Produce: Lettuce, spinach, kale, collards, and carrots, grown in our organically certified hoophouse and at our organic schoolhouse garden. A few cucumbers too! (Just starting to come in.) Look for the bright organic sign located by the market cooler where we keep this produce fresh.

Please help: We have so much beautiful lettuce and kale coming in….with the hot temperatures coming this weekend….salads should be on your menu. And Becca harvested some gorgeous baby oakleaf and baby crispy lettuce today which make such beautiful, sweet, tasty salads. Spring lettuce is so nice and tender – get it while you can!

Bakery Update: One of the most frequent calls to the bakery is about when will we have Strawberry Glaze Pie. We are making them right now! We will have them on Friday, Saturday and Sunday until they sell out. We are also making shortcakes, from an old family favorite recipe, to go with your strawberries (whipped cream in the cooler!). If you would like us to save something for you feel free to call us at 269-244-5690 and we will gladly set it back for you!

Bakery offerings for the weekend will be:

  • Cookies: Cut Out Sugar, Monster (chocolate chips, M&M’s peanut butter and oatmeal), Iced Lemon, Peanut Butter, Ginger Molasses, Smores, and Cherry White Chocolate Chip
  • Pies: Apple, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, Strawberry Rhubarb and Strawberry Glaze
  • Bread: Whole Wheat, Cinnamon, Italian, Whole Grain, Vegetables and Tuscan, as well as Hamburger Buns and Hot Dog Buns. We are partnering again with La Brea bakery this year and will have the following breads: Semolina Cheese, Roasted Garlic Loaf, and Jalapeño Cheese
  • Cinnamon Rolls and Pecan Sticky Buns
  • Assorted Dessert Bars
  • Muffins: Banana Nut, Blueberry, Lemon Poppyseed, Pistachio, and Strawberry
  • Donuts: We will have our Blueberry, Buttermilk, and Cherry Cake Donuts available Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  We will also have Cherry Fritters, Vanilla Fluff Longjohns, Yeast Twists, Bavarian Cream (Custard) Longjohns, Raspberry Bismarks, and Yeast Rings (available all week)
  • Slushies

Alcohol offerings: We have our full range of brandy for sale. We also have cherry wine, as well as: Strawberry Cider (the 2017 edition of the cider many of you liked last year), Sweet Cider, Ginger Cider, Dry Cider, Hometown Hero, Bark Bite, Brunch Cider, and Afternoon Cider.

We also have a Prince Tribute Cider starting Saturday in honor of Prince (his birthday was this week!) made with plum, honey, and vanilla. Becca was a really big Prince fan and much of the hard cider you enjoy was brewed with his music playing in her headphones. Curious? Come to our hard cider happy hour on Friday from 4-6 or Saturday from 3-6 if you want a growler or a sample before you buy! Of course, we are a small family market so bear with us as we try and figure out the best way to do this and keep the atmosphere you know and love! We look forward to seeing you.

And of course, we have our usual brandy house tours with Bruce from 1-3 on Saturdays.

Happenings on the farm:

We have watered, then watered some more.   The winds have been so drying….our fields are parched.

Watering strawberries

We started thinning our peach trees. We will have peaches this year of some varieties. When you look at the orchard you will see trees with no peaches on them or too many peaches–which is why we take them off, so that they can grow to a nice size and not break the limb!). We did lose some of the peaches in the spring frost, but the good news is, we will have peaches!

Look how many peaches on this little limb

We planted pumpkins today….and now after one more sweet corn planting (to hit on Labor Day weekend) and some more green beans….we will soon be able to put the planting equipment away for the year.

May not look like much now….but just wait until it’s full of big pumpkins!

Everyone at Corey Lake Orchards thanks you for buying local!

 

How Could It Be June?

Our spring has been so “over-tasked” that it was shocking to realize that the calendar has us in June. June is one of our favorite months here on the farm because of strawberry season! There is truly nothing like a freshly picked Michigan strawberry.

So here’s an update to the most frequently asked question: “When will strawberries be ready?”

  • The current weather (which is fantastic growing weather–cool nights and warm days) have slowed down the berries a bit, so our best guess is that U-PIck strawberries could be ready around June 15th. We recommend you check back around June 12th for an update.
  • We are starting to pick a few berries each day from our early variety, which sell out fast.  So call before you come to see if we have any or ask us to hold some for you.
  • Pricing will be the same as last year when the berries come into full production: at that point, a quart of berries already picked will be $3.75 and a flat of 8 quarts, ordered in advance or when available, will be $28. You can order flats anytime now by calling us at 269-244-5690 and we’ll call you when ready. U-Pick pricing will be $2.25 a quart.

What we have on the market now:

Asparagus: We have plenty of asparagus now, this is the time to can, freeze, or simply get a lot to enjoy. It will only last about one more week…pricing is the same as last year: $2.25 a pound, 10# or more in bulk, goes to $2.00 a pound. If you want to call and place an order for a large quantity, call us at 269-244-5690, but we have plenty on hand.

Rhubarb: Available now for $2.50 a pound. If you need 10 pounds or more, please call us to order and we’ll get it picked and ready.  269-244-5690. And….if you don’t have time or want to make your own rhubarb pie, stop into our bakery where we have this spring favorite pie ready.

Greenhouse tomatoes are finally here. So plan a BLT into an upcoming meal! We bake the bread, have extremely tasty bacon from Mill Lake farm in the freezer, and beautiful organically grown lettuce in the cooler. Yum!

Finally! Plenty of greenhouse tomatoes.

Some of our U-Pick Herbs are readyFind bags, scissors for cutting around the neck of the bird overlooking the herb garden. A list of what is ready is posted at the market.

Bedding plants: All of the plants that we still have are on sale now, and we’d like them to be in your gardens!  We still have flowers, tomatoes, vegetables and herbs.

Organic Produce: Lettuce, spinach, kale and carrots, grown in our organically certified hoophouse and at our organic schoolhouse garden. Look for the bright organic sign located by the market cooler where we keep this produce fresh. Sungold tomatoes still about a week away…we’re eager to get our hands on some super sweet baby tomatoes from the greenhouse!

Bakery Update: If you would like us to save something for you feel free to call us at 269-244-5690 and we will gladly set it back for you!

Bakery offerings for the weekend will be:

  • Cookies: Cut Out Sugar, Monster (chocolate chips, M&M’s peanut butter and oatmeal), Iced Lemon, Peanut Butter, Ginger Molasses, Smores, and Cherry White Chocolate Chip
  • Pies: Apple, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, Strawberry Rhubarb and Rhubarb
  • Bread: Whole Wheat, Cinnamon, Italian, Whole Grain, Vegetables and Tuscan, as well as Hamburger Buns and Hot Dog Buns. We are partnering again with La Brea bakery this year and will have the following breads: Semolina Cheese, Roasted Garlic Loaf, and Jalapeño Cheese
  • Cinnamon Rolls and Pecan Sticky Buns
  • Assorted Dessert Bars
  • Muffins: Banana Nut, Blueberry, Lemon Poppyseed, Pistachio, and Strawberry
  • Donuts: We will have our Blueberry, Buttermilk, and Cherry cake donuts available Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  We will also have Cherry Fritters, Vanilla Fluff Longjohns, Yeast Twists, Bavarian Cream (Custard) Longjohns, Raspberry Bismarks, and Yeast Rings (available all week)
  • Slushies

Alcohol offerings: We have our full range of brandy for sale. We also have cherry wine, as well as: Strawberry Cider (the 2017 edition of the cider many of you liked last year), Sweet Cider, Ginger Cider, Dry Cider, Hometown Hero, Brunch Cider, made with vanilla and Michigan maple syrup, and a new one: Bark Bite. Bark Bite is a totally dry cider aged with smoked hickory, beech, cherry, and oak barks.

We also have our new Afternoon Cider. Becca’s a big iced tea fan and whipped this up with red rooibos tea, chamomile, and a touch of strawberry. It’s a great cider to drink sitting in the spring sunshine.

Brandy tasting and tours are on Saturday with Bruce from 1-3 in the brandy room. New this year are cider tastings. From 4-6 on Fridays and 3-6 on Saturdays, join Becca at the market for hard cider happy hour. We’ll be doing bottle pours and have many of our ciders on tap for flights and growler fills as well. We’re really excited to be doing more tastings this year as well as provide a nice space at the market for our customers to have a drink and pleasant conversation. Of course, we are a small family market so bear with us as we try and figure out the best way to do this and keep the atmosphere you know and love! We look forward to seeing you.

Happenings on the farm:

Becca got off the farm on Tuesday night to deliver three kegs to Craft Draft 2 Go in Kalamazoo, so for our Kalamazoo customers looking to get a crowler, growler, or just a sample of some of our ciders, there’s one more place you can check (as well as The Local in Centreville and Appoloni’s and the Riviera Theatre in Three Rivers).

Craft Draft 2 Go. It’s a really nice space!

We loved seeing so many customers enjoying the farm over the holiday weekend, many of the lake customers were back for the first time for the year along with all of our loyal local customers. You kept us busy making pies, then more pies, bottling more hard cider, picking and bagging asparagus and by Tuesday we were ready to catch our breath.   And….for once it seemed everyone was happy that the weather people were wrong as nice weather prevailed.

Two young customers enjoying donuts over the holiday weekend.

Thanks as always for buying local, from everyone at Corey Lake Orchards.