Bellvale Farms and Creamery

By grace.g.yang ยท October 30, 2008
Under: My Life,Travels

After our unsuccessful (but fun) apple picking adventure, we drove to Bellvale Farms to find some pumpkins. The original plan was to find pumpkins at Masker’s as well, but they didn’t have much of a selection so we figured we’d have more luck somewhere else. We drove to Bellvale Farms and didn’t see many pumpkins at first, but that’s because the REAL pumpkins were still in the pumpkin patch – the owner of the farm took us out on his tractor:

Tim Notebottom, the farmer behind Bellvale Farms and Creamery, talked to us about the farm his family owned – it’s been in his family for seven generations! The land we were on switches between alfalfa and corn (alfalfa is on the ground now to replenish the nutrients in the soil) and the crop will switch every five years or so. The alfalfa was already harvested and it’s used as feed for the cows on the farm:

I can’t remember the exact number of cows on the farm, but I think it was around 50. The cows provide the milk for the creamery up the hill from the pumpkin patch/farm/pasture (also owned by Tim Notebottom):

Once we arrived at the pumpkin patch, we started searching for our perfect pumpkin. Actually, we started searching for a pumpkin for Sara. I can’t remember the last time David and I actually carved a pumpkin (probably sometime in college), but Sara carves one every year and we had to find one for this year.

David’s pumpkin – which is almost as big as his head:

ONE of the pumpkins Sara fell in love with:

And I started a pile of pumpkins that I thought Sara would like (we were looking for REALLY BIG pumpkins):

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Once David and I found the pumpkins we liked, we started taking goofy pictures, including this one:

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Yes, I know it’s amazing that I can jump with a pumpkin.

Sara couldn’t decide which two pumpkins she liked the most (she was getting one for herself and one for her roommate, Jamie), so we ended up taking all of the “final” pumpkins to the weighing station:

Sara ended up buying all three pumpkins and giving us one to keep in our apartment! David and I haven’t carved ours but we feel really festive with the pumpkin in our apartment now – I might try to make a pumpkin soup or pumpkin tempura if I have time (although the pumpkin is starting to rot a bit). I also picked up some butternut squash and ended up making a butternut soup that was a big hit!

After our pumpkin adventure, we drove to Bellvale Creamery for some ice cream:

I was thinking it might be similar to Jarlings Custard Cup in Champaign, especially since it smelled really great inside (from the homemade waffle cones). The flavors change based on the season AND they close during the winter (just like Jarlings!) so I had high hopes. Here are the flavors they had that Sunday:

David, Sara, and I went crazy on the samples – I think we each tried three samples before we finally decided on the ice creams we were going to order. I went with pumpkin:

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David ordered the Bellvale Bog (dark chocolate with brownie chunks and fudge swirl), and Sara ordered cheesecake – all of us with our ice cream:

The ice cream was a little disappointing because it was melting from the moment it got into my hands. Ice cream needs to be firm (but not hard) and not too soft either (because I REALLY HATE WHEN COLD THINGS MELT WHILE I’M EATING THEM!) The ice cream was really creamy, but I definitely wasn’t blown away – especially from Sara’s cheesecake ice cream (because I thought it tasted like I was licking a stick of cream cheese). Even though I wasn’t a fan of the ice cream, I was definitely impressed with the view from the creamery:

It was so beautiful!

After a full day of apple and pumpkin picking, we headed back to New York (but with a stop to Wal-Mart beforehand). Grocery shopping in New Jersey is really fun because you realize just how much value you get from living in the suburbs. I mean, where else can you get 18 eggs for $2.18?!

Happy Halloween!

Reader Comments

Wow, the trip sounded awesome… And you all look great.

Written By Red on November 9th, 2008 @ 3:11 pm

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