Autumn in Ulster County is a feast for the senses. As the air turns crisp and the green of summer gives way to hues of orange, gold and red, our farms and chefs harvest the rich bounty of the Hudson Valley’s fertile soil.
Those seeking the freshest farm-to-table, vine-to-bottle and field-to-fork experiences will find them in our sprawling U-pick farms, vineyards, bakeries and restaurants. It’s the perfect time to head upstate and fall for autumn right here in Ulster County.
Sweater weather and crunchy, crisp apples go hand-in-hand. Bring the family and a football to toss around at Wright’s Farm in Gardiner. With 453 acres amid breathtaking views, there is plenty of room to carve out the perfect spot to tailgate with your crew, your dog or your gang.
Weekend crews always enjoy Twin Star Orchards in New Paltz, which brews its beloved Brooklyn Cider on-site (they also serve wood-fired pizzas and burgers in a breezy outdoor dining area); ditto the recently revamped Locust Grove Fruit Farm in Milton, now a cider-centric destination thanks to a newly added Brewery Barn.
Weed Orchards & Winery in Marlboro hosts kid-friendly picking expeditions (including school tours) to complement the grown-up appeal of its Tasting Room and Cafe, where those of drinking age can reconnect with their boozy inner child over a signature Wine Slushie. Stone Ridge Orchard in Stone Ridge (duh) offers U-pick apples and Asian pears throughout the fall, plus a farm stand of curated produce and baked treats and a stocked bar of ciders, wines, beer and cocktails.
Kelder’s Farm in Kerhonkson leans into the kid-friendly fall fun, with pumpkin patches, corn mazes, a petting farm and other “farm fun” attractions (candy cannon or jack-o-lantern jump pad, anyone?). Likewise, Hurds Family Farm is a sure crowd-pleaser with the kiddos, thanks to its legendary apple cider donuts, hayrides, giant slide and bounce pillow (among many other family activities).
Voted Best Pick-Your-Own in the Hudson Valley, the recently expanded DuBois Farms in Highland boasts a well-stocked market of canned and jarred delights, The Tavern bar and restaurant, a bakery and ice cream shop, and a special event center—in addition to its famous pick-your-own orchards, where hayrides and tractor pulls rule the season.
Meanwhile, our innovative chefs and drinkmasters work their magic with locally sourced menus at spots like Silvia in Woodstock, Aroma Thyme Bistro in Ellenville, Butterfield in Stone Ridge, A Tavola Trattoria in New Paltz, and Miss Lucy’s Kitchen in Saugerties, to name just a few.