Cider Tasting at Carter Mountain Orchard


Last spring, Brady gave me a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc, a pair of YETI wine tumblers and the promise that he would take me to Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyard for my birthday. 

For years, I’ve obsessed over images of Pippin Hill, a picture perfect vineyard in Charlottesville, Virginia. It's been featured by Brides Magazine, Conde Nast TravelerHarper’s Bazaar, Martha Stewart WeddingsSouthern Living and Vogue, just to name drop a few for effect. 

Our plan was to have a belated-birthday celebration in Charlottesville over the summer. A dreamy little getaway, just us. But you know how it goes... between work, weather and our busy summer schedules, we couldn’t find a weekend worth making the four-hour drive.


Ultimately, optimal weather and a stress-free scenario meant holding out for fall. 

And after months of looking forward to this road trip, we were finally on our way! With a tank full of gas and our puppy in the backseat, I was ready to cross “wine tasting at Pippin Hill” off my bucket list. 

So imagine the buzzkill when we arrived, 170 miles later, and were told that the Tasting Room had reached maximum capacity. What? Maximum capacity?

We were so disappointed that our original plan had failed, but we got back on the highway in search of a new one. Luckily, this spontaneity led us to a pretty great alternative.

Instead of wine tasting at Pippin Hill, we went cider tasting at Carter Mountain Orchard.


About the Orchard

Brady and I spent the rest of our afternoon at this family-owned orchard tucked in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. With acres of apples as far as the eye can see, Carter Mountain Orchard is such a dreamy fall destination. Whether you choose to pick apples by the basket, or admire the foliage while snacking on something sweet, it's the perfect place to enjoy the outdoors.

Bold Rock Hard Cider TASTING

After exploring the property a bit, we found our way to the Tap Room, where we ordered flights of Bold Rock Hard Cider. Crushed and crafted in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Bold Rock Hard Cider uses the apples from — you guessed it! — Carter Mountain Orchard.

Brady chose the flight with dry ciders, and I chose the fruitier flight so that we could both try all eight options. We agreed that the differences were subtle, but my favorite was probably the Virginia Draft. And I say 'probably' because they were all so crisp and refreshing, making it hard to truly pick 'the best.'



If hard apple cider isn’t your thing, don’t worry. Carter Mountain Orchard has apple cider everything. Their award-winning apple cider donuts are easily the best I’ve ever had, but they also sell apple pie, apple butter, caramel apples, hot apple cider and apple cider slushies!

Our road trip to Charlottesville didn’t go exactly as planned, but I’m so glad we got to experience apple season at Carter Mountain Orchard! Have you ever had a similar experience? Let me know in a comment below, or over on the ‘gram!