Many will argue that fall is the best time of the year, what with cooler days, beautiful autumn colors, bonfires, the return of football – and of course, the arrival of favorite fall flavors! From donuts to beer, coffee to cake, you can celebrate the best season with these tastes of autumn in Ohio.
S’mores Cream Puffs at Schmidt’s Sausage Haus (Columbus)
Schmidt’s is a Columbus institution, known for their historic digs in German Village, their Autobahn buffet, Bahama Mama sausages, and their jumbo cream puffs. Their restaurant and event space is a year-round destination, while their stalls at the Ohio State Fair are a popular stop every summer. Their softball-sized, custard-filled cream puffs are a house staple, and every season they have a little fun with the flavors. This month you can sink your teeth into a s’mores cream puff, a half-pound pastry filled with chocolate cream and topped with a toasted marshmallow, crumbled graham cracker, and slice of chocolate bar.
Pumpkin Donuts at Lindsey’s Bakery (Circleville)
When you catch a fresh Lindsey’s Bakery pumpkin donut, still warm from the fryer, you’ve captured one of the best tastes of fall. Located right on Main Street in downtown Circleville, Lindsey’s is a long-time community favorite. They’re known for cookies, cakes, and pies, but the pumpkin donuts are the signature. During the four days of the Circleville Pumpkin Show (coming up October 16-19!), they’ll sell upwards of 100,000 pumpkin donuts. The best part is: they make and sell the donuts all year round.
Franz Oktoberfest at Rhinegeist | Cincinnati
With the arrival of fall, beer-drinkers’ tastes shift from light and refreshing summer brews to the sweet, malty, warming autumn beers like Oktoberfests, harvest ales, pumpkin ales, porters, and the like. Many Ohio breweries offer these classic styles, or fun variations on them. In August and September, Cincinnati’s Rhinegeist Brewery releases their take on the classic German Oktoberfest: Franz. It’s created using German malts and hops, and is crisp, refreshing, and lightly sweet. You’ll find it on tap and in cans all over the state.
Caramel Apple Cake at Apple Hill Orchards | Mansfield & Fredericktown
In addition to the pumpkin, the apple is one of the signature flavors of fall. Apple orchards across Ohio feature trees heavy with fruit, as friends and families gather to romp through the orchards and pick apples. And with that come all sorts of tastes: fresh apple cider, apple pies, apple cider donuts. Apple Hill Orchards Mansfield and Fredericktown offers acres for picking, plus a small market with apple products. Their caramel apple cake is served in a giant slab, layering slice apples, caramel, and crumbled streusel on top. Once slice is enough to feed three people!
Fall Spice Latte at Plate 21 | Toledo
Ohio coffee shops and roasters excel at bringing the flavors of fall to the humble coffee bean, whether it’s special spices in your espresso drink or a locally roasted flavored coffee. Many coffee shops create special seasonal drinks, and Plate 21 in Toledo whips up the Fall Spice Latte, a lightly sweet concoction built on a molasses base and flavored with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and clove.
All images by Nicholas Dekker, except Rhinegeist Brewery, Schmidt’s, and Plate 21. Images are courtesy of the businesses.