After my Sunday drinking cider and eating crepes at Tandem Ciders, I sat down to write about the experience but conveying my warm fussy feelings was providing difficult. So, my sincere apologies right from the start for the following lame citation but I just can’t help myself.
I have to remind you of these words by Gary Portnoy and Judy Hart Angelo from the theme song to the old TV show Cheers:
Making your way in the world today takes everything you’ve got.
Taking a break from all your worries sure would help a lot.
Wouldn’t you like to get away?
Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name,
and they’re always glad you came.
You wanna be where you can see,
our troubles are all the same.
You wanna be where everybody knows your name.
I simply could not find any words (of my own) to better describe the feeling you get from a visit to Tandem Ciders. Even if they don’t know your name, the friendly staff likely will by the time you leave. The tasting room, though small, invites you to sit a spell, drink a pint and have a chat with the knowledgeable staff about all things cider. You will likely hear other chatter from folks conversing and laughing while playing darts, children giggling in the play area, and dogs giving a little bark outside.
Tandem Ciders was started in 2008 by Michigan native Nikki Rothwell and Dan Young who hails from New England. The name came from a tandem bike tour the two took in England in 2003 when, as fate would have it, they also discovered the lure of hard cider. This clever name reinforces the vibe of connectedness that this business embodies. (A more complete story of Nikki and Dan is available on their website http://www.tandemciders.com )
Nikki, Dan, and their staff are committed to the art of cider-making. They use locally sourced, tree-picked apples chosen for their exquisite flavor and they strive to capture the essence and unique qualities of these beloved fruits in their cider offerings.
Below is my video of a Sunday afternoon spent at Tandem Ciders with a spotlight on Deloris Burton their crepe maker. Crepes are only offered at the cidery on Sundays during “the season” which makes them an extra special treat.
As it turns out, I have known Deloris for a couple of years. We first met when I hired her to model for my former women’s apparel website. She is known for her unique (sometimes outrageous) fashion sense, her quick wit, artistic abilities and, at Tandem Ciders, she is the chef de crepe, (or pancake-maker as she would put it). On Sundays, she whips up her yummy crepes which include her gluten-free buckwheat crepe mix and her own homemade relishes and jams. In addition, she uses Boars Head meats (https://boarshead.com/) and locally sourced raclette cheese (http://www.leelanaucheese.com/), whipped cream (https://shetlermilk.com/) and fresh fruits.
In addition, I should be sure to mention all the folks that make Tandem Ciders one of the best places in Leelanau County to hang out and drink cider. Of course, above-mentioned owners (Nikki and Dan), the tasting room servers extraordinaire (Sarah Arnebeck, Trish Van Dusen, Danielle Miller-Duffy, Carrie Bahle), cider wizards and pressers (Richard Burton, David Burton, Burt Mcnaughton) and distribution manager (J.P. Kent).
Whether you’re a local or a visitor to Leelanau County be sure to swing by Tandem Ciders and “take a break from all your worries”. You will enjoy the experience and depart this place a better person for having tasted their delicious artisanal ciders and, on Sundays, Deloris’s amazing homemade crepes. If you go there or have been there before, I’d love to hear how you like it. Comment below or visit my YouTube channel and leave a comment there.