Upstate NY apple orchard named the third-best in the United States


LaFayette, NY — Another year, another Honeycrisp-fresh accolade for one of Upstate New York’s most popular orchards.

Beak & Skiff Apple Orchards has been named the third-best apple orchard in the nation by USA Today’s 10Best. The 111-year-old orchard — housed in Central New York’s hilly, pastoral LaFayette — was the only New York farm to make the list.

Beak & Skiff isn’t new to the yearly ranking of great American orchards.

The apple farm was rated America’s No. 1 orchard in 2021, marking its fourth time in six years at the top of the national readers’ choice poll.

10Best lauded Beak & Skiff for offering guests a variety of both apples and activities.

“Gala, McIntosh, Ginger Gold and Paula Red are just a few of the varieties offered from late August through late October,” 10Best wrote. “Live music events, Cider Fests, Orchard Runs and a Kids’ Magic Show add entertainment to the apple picking.”

Visitors exit after apple picking at the Beak & Skiff Apple Hill Campus in LaFayette, NY, on Monday Sept. 4, 2017. Scott Shield | sschild@syracuse.comSyria

The seeds for Beak & Skiff were planted in 1911 when an onion farmer and a dairy farmer met at a market and decided to plant an orchard on an idyllic Route 20 hillside, according to the orchard’s website. As it grew, the farm navigated droughts and frosts — using smudge pots and wind machines to ward away the chilly, blossom-killing air that settles in the orchard.

Beak & Skiff waded into the agritourism business in 1975 by opening a U-pick orchard in an area now called Apple Hill, according to the farm’s website.

In the decades since it opened, the Apple Hill Campus has continued to grow.

Adult guests can take a break from apple picking to enjoy a drink from Beak & Skiff’s 1911 Spirits line of hard ciders, vodka and gin in the 1911 Tasting Room and Tavern on Apple Hill. After taking a wagon ride into the orchard, children can play in the kids’ treehouse and shoot off an apple cannon before munching on a cider donut from the orchard’s bakery.

In the summer, guests can also flock to the orchard to enjoy a concert featuring bands like Wilco, Lake Street Dive and Death Cab for Cutie.

And stay tuned for the next offering on Beak & Skiff’s agenda: Marijuana-infused beverages, edibles and vape products.

READ MORE

Apple picking time: Here’s a list of 108 U-Pick orchards across Upstate NY

CNY’s best-known apple orchard plans a big move into the marijuana business

Free fall foliage shuttles to the Adirondacks High Peaks region, starting this weekend

Upstate NY city named one of the best places to see fall foliage in the US

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *