Editor’s be aware: This is portion of The Know’s series, Workers Favorites. Each and every week, we will present our viewpoints on the finest that Colorado has to provide for dining, shopping, leisure, out of doors actions and a lot more. (We’ll also let you in on some hidden gems). Find our earlier Workers Favorites listed here.
For a long time, just about every time I drove by the Colorado Cherry Company’s Lyons site on the way to or from Rocky Mountain National Park, a voice in my head would whisper, “I need to have to prevent there someday.” The indications out entrance promised “Famous Pies,” Black Bing Cherry Cider, jams and jellies.
But I was constantly in a hurry to get to the park, or to get household soon after a working day of experience there, so I drove by Colorado Cherry lots of occasions with the nagging emotion that I was missing out on anything special. When I at last stopped and checked it out, I found out just how sweet it is.
That working day I arrived residence with a cherry streusel pie that may have been the most tasty bakery merchandise I have ever tasted. And after I discovered what I’d been missing, I produced a vow to quit there every possibility I get.
Even prior to that initially beautiful chunk of cherry streusel, I had a hunch Colorado Cherry’s confections have been incredible due to the fact there normally seemed to be lots of automobiles parked out front as I sped by.
The corporation has a prolonged record relationship back to 1929, in accordance to operator Kristi Lehnert. That was when her husband’s Hungarian grandmother began producing pies in southern Wisconsin that were being so delicious, persons would drive up from Illinois for them. They also made ciders.
Grandma Lehnert ‘s son, Monrico, and his wife moved to Colorado in 1960 and opened the 1st Colorado Cherry locale in Large Thompson Canyon, west of Loveland on U.S. 34. Positioned on a single of the primary routes to Rocky Mountain Nationwide Park, the keep experienced no potable drinking water due to the fact of its locale in the canyon (it nevertheless does not) and was only open during vacationer time from May perhaps to September.
Kristi and her partner, Anthony Lehnert, bought the company 14 years back and shortly included a second place on U.S. 36, about a 3rd of the way from Lyons to Rocky Mountain Countrywide Park. Now they also function a cafe at the Stanley Lodge in Estes Park and a small bakery in Windsor. And this 12 months, their son, Elias, opened a Denver place on historic Tennyson Street.
The Lehnerts marketed more than 28,000 pies in 2019 and are now at 25,000 so significantly this calendar year, still using home made recipes centered on Grandma Lehnert’s. She died with out writing them down, but the family figured out how to re-produce them as a result of trial-and-error flavor-tests. Everything is designed from scratch.
“Our crust is all butter,” Kristi Lehnert reported, meaning they use no lard, “and it’s really high-quality butter. We agreement with a farm in Michigan to get all of our cherries. We use superior-quality products, and I imagine when you place it all together, you arrive out with a definitely incredible very simple, thoroughly clean item.”
They also offer other fruit pies (the blended berry is sublime) 5 “creamy” pies (like important lime and cherry cheesecake) meat pies preserves and juices and ciders. You can purchase their cherry pie filling for your individual home made baking. And, certainly, you can buy pie by the slice.
Each cherry pie has seven tiny hearts on the crust, a bow to the company’s roots in Loveland. It is a labor-intense detail: Practically 97,000 hearts have been pressed so significantly this 12 months for additional than 13,800 cherry pies. Lehnert says it is well worth it.
“We make the dough, we roll it out, we push all the hearts,” Lehnert reported. “We began in Loveland, and individuals beloved the heart and its signature. We’re not getting rid of it.”
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