Sweet, sour and everything in between. Cherries are a summer fruit as seasonal as they come.
With the help of the Great Lakes to moderate temperatures and Michigan’s rolling hill topography, the result is a growing season that produces 40% of the annual tart cherry crop for the United States.
Sarah and Phil Hallstedt, owners of Hallstedt Homestead Cherries in Northport, Michigan, make it their mission to introduce eight sweet varieties to their cherry-loving visitors and educate skeptics as well.
“For us, we love seeing the expression of somebody who has never really liked cherries, and so, when they taste a fresh cherry for the first time—and a good one—it just blows them out of the water,” Sarah says. “And a lot of times, we have new converts who actually like their cherries now.”
And culinary experts in the area certainly agree. Bryon “Fig” Figueroa, director of operations and chef for Northport Pub & Grille, says that even Michelin-star chefs in New York would envy the produce they have in the area.
“They wish they had it. It’s that good.”