Scenes from Amish Country in Holmes County, Ohio

banner amish country

Catch up on my previous Amish Country posts:
Reconnecting with my Amish roots in Berlin, Ohio
Busting myths at the Amish & Mennonite Heritage Center
Searching for authentic experiences in Amish Country

heinis-cheese-chalet

After the Amish & Mennonite Heritage Center, my next stop in Amish Country was Heini’s Cheese Chalet, a wholesale cheese market with more types of cheese than you’ve ever seen. Visitors are welcomed with a cool stained glass Amish scene and a confusing welcome sign.

amish glass

amish-entrance

An Amish man leads tours of the factory and explains how the cheese is made. Four days a week, you can witness the cheesemaking process through windows. I was told Heini’s produces 36,000 pounds of cheese per week, with milk from about 250 area farms. It takes 10 pounds of milk to make one pound of cheese, so you can only imagine how much milk is coming through these doors everyday.

heinis-cheesemaking

They had dozens of varieties of cheese on hand for purchase, most with a little box of samples that you can try. My favorite cheeses were tomato garlic, pizza, dill, and cheddar bacon. I didn’t know what moon cheese is, but the silly green cheese caught my eye.

moon-cheese

heinis-aisles

Besides the cheeses, Heini’s offers homemade fudge, which was the real highlight for me. Free samples of all these crazy fudge flavors!

heinis-fudge

I purchased some root beer float fudge because it was amazing, although blueberry cheesecake wasn’t far behind. It’s probably a good thing for my waistline that I don’t live nearby, because I can imagine myself coming by every week.

The culinary treasures kept coming with a lunch visit to Boyd & Wurthmann, which began in 1930 as a grocery store and now serves traditional meals made by Amish cooks. This meatloaf dinner was just like the hearty Sunday dinners my grandmother used to make.

boyd-wurthmann-meatloaf

Speaking of which, even though I was stuffed from the main course, I had to try a slice of pie, since Boyd & Wurthmann had more than 15 varieties of homemade pie available. I went with the old standby of coconut cream. They also offered peanut butter, butterscotch, raisin, cherry, and numerous others.

boyd-wurthmann-pie

One of the highlights of my experience with Amish Heartland Tours was the opportunity to see brooms made by an Amish woman at A.T.’s Broom & Book Store. Ada spun each broom using her hands and a decades-old machine. It took about 20 minutes for her to create a new broom from scratch.

amish-broommaker

If you’re interested in purchasing homemade Amish brooms, A.T.’s is located at 3270 CR 114 in Sugarcreek, Ohio, though much of the store’s business is conducted long-distance rather than in person. Ada has clients in various states. You can reach the store’s voicemail at 330-893-4519.

amish-brooms

The rest of the day consisted of a lot of walking and driving around Berlin – which, by the way, the local Amish pronounce BER-lin, accenting the first syllable. Here’s some of what I saw.

You don’t see “Amish parking only” signs in a lot of communities.

amish-parking-sign

The Locust Lane school in Sugarcreek is a typical Amish school with fewer than 30 students.

locust-lane-school-berlin

This flashy truck was way more eye-popping than anything typically associated with the Amish.

amish-wares-van

Another shot from the back seat of my ride in an Amish buggy. Our horse was named Shirley and she moved fast.

amish-buggy-ride-horse

Many local Amish and Mennonites get around by bicycle.

amish-bicyclist

A horse and buggy in the parking lot of an Amish hardware department store.

horse-buggy-parking-lot

The horse made a lot of noise while he waited for his driver. It was clearly anxious to get out of there. Interestingly, a lot of Amish businesses provide transportation for their employees so they don’t have to deal with the problem of leaving a buggy outside for the entire work day.

buggy-parking-lot

Views of the Amish countryside.

amish-farm

amish-country-backroads

amish-dirt-roads

Working in the fields.

amish-farmers

Storefronts in Berlin.

oldest-building-berlin-ohio

pams-place-berlin-ohio

olde-thyme-homespun-shoppe

berlin-businesses

kaufmans-berlin-ohio

The evening brought ominous clouds behind Berlin’s water tower.

berlin-ohio-storm

Visiting Amish Country in Holmes County, Ohio was a great experience. I can’t wait to go back.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Facebook Comments

comments

About Scott Shetler

Scott is a Chicago-based journalist and blogger who seeks out quirky sights and awesome destinations throughout North America and beyond.

7 comments on “Scenes from Amish Country in Holmes County, Ohio

  1. Scott:

    This post rocks!! I love Heini’s. I remember when we visited a few years ago they had “parking in the rear” and had signs in the store that they would “gladly cut the cheese for you.” When we went last year those were both gone. I assume someone informed them of the connection to Heini… LOL

    Holmes County is actually more fun than the Lancaster area of Pennsylvania, in my opinion. It does have a certain Charm to it, if you know what I mean.

    Thanks for the great post and photos. I am envious. I have always wanted to ride in an Amish buggy and take photos from the trip… Maybe on my next visit.

    Happy travels to Canada Scott!!

    Sumoflam
    Sumoflam recently posted..Road Trip Home from Idaho – Day 3: Glendive, MT thru Enchanted Highway, Mt. Rushmore to Oacoma, SD

    • Hey Sumoflam, thanks for the info on the Heini’s inside jokes! I wonder why they took those away. I suppose someone was offended at the humor. I haven’t been to Lancaster yet so that’s definitely on the wishlist.

  2. Very interesting to get a behind the scenes tour and a ride in the buggy is definitely unique. That’s quite the giant store with an incredible selection of calorie laden but delicious foodstuffs. I’d love to do this tour.
    Leigh recently posted..8 Great Canadian Train Trips

  3. I just returned from a amazing trip to Holmes County. What an great trip.
    Loved the shops and the countryside is beautiful, I had not been around the Amish before and found them so fascinating.
    Can’t wait to make another trip and stay longer.
    The only puzzling question I had was why you could only find Pepsi product and no coke product at all

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.