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Fly Creek Cider Mill and Orchard is one of New York State's oldest working cider mills. Owned by authors Brenda and Bill Michaels, the mill sits on the banks of Fly Creek near historic Cooperstown, where for more than 150 years visitors have come to watch as apples are pressed into fresh cider.
Released to commemorate the 160th anniversary of the mill, The Fly Creek Cider Mill Cookbook captures the history of this treasured operation through stories, photography, and more than 100 apple- and cider-based recipes.
These recipes range from sauces and drinks to breads and soups to starters and main courses. Each recipe has been selected with the home cook in mind. Contributed by mill employees and friends, each dish has been vetted by James Beard Awardwinning cookbook author Judith Choate, who is a friend of the Michaels family.
When Hosea Williams opened the mill in the mid-1800s, settlers from around the region abandoned making labor-intensive, homemade cider in favor of milling their apples at Fly Creek. While waiting for the fruit to be turned into cider, community members amused themselves by watching the newfangled machinery, picnicking, and gossiping with friends and familya scene not so different from the mill's workings today.
More than 175,000 people visit the mill each year to experience a time-honored tradition that expresses the essence of another era. This book will appeal not only to home cooks in search of some nostalgic goodness but also to those who are interested in the history of a resilient American enterprise and the farm-to-table food movement.
Brenda Palmer Michaels is president and co-owner of the Fly Creek Cider Mill and Orchard. She attended the Rhode Island School of Design and holds a BFA with honors from Pratt Institute. She received the WISE (Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship) Award, among many others.
Bill Michaels is the co-owner of the Fly Creek Cider Mill and Orchard. He took over the Mill with his wife, Brenda, in 1999. He has served as Councilman on the Town Board of Cooperstown, NY, his hometown community. He has won numerous awards as an entrepreneur and small business owner.