On Saturday morning we woke up before the birds and hit the road for my birthday weekend in Boyne City.  My new favorite thermos kept my coffee piping hot while we packed up for our adventure. This thermos is the best.  Not only does the bright blue color bring a bit of sunshine to those dark mornings, it keeps my drink hot for hours. Coffee stays hot enough that you would think it just came out of the Keurig. The lid seals tightly, has an opening large enough to fit my smoothie straw in, and is the perfect size. I highly recommend this travel mug for anyone who goes on long car rides and loves a cup of hot coffee.

Boyne City is about three hours away, and my coffee was hot for the whole trip.  If you’d like to buy one for yourself, go here! There are a bajillion color choices, so pick one that makes you smile in those early morning hours.

Blue Heron Cafe

First stop was for breakfast, of course, at the Blue Heron Cafe and Bakery in Cadillac. This family owned cafe has a limited menu that proudly makes use of locally sourced ingredients. The menu is not large but it does offer unique, creative options and should be enough to leave every palette satisfied. I originally planned to order the yogurt parfait as they had gluten free granola, but my husband pointed out an omelette stuffed with some of my favorite items that just screamed my name. I find it very hard to pass up anything with goat cheese and fresh mushrooms.

He chose the Farmers Omelette with spicy chorizo, hold the sweet potatoes. However, there was a bit of sweet potato regret as the meal wore on. He said the chorizo was spicier than he expected and the sweet potato would have balanced nicely with that. Their coffee was great and we were served quickly. My breakfast arrived with gluten free toast, but the avocado on my omelette was missing. After flagging down our waitress and advising her of this little dust-up, she quickly brought some to the table and all was right with the world. We recommend stopping here if you’re tired of the same old breakfast and want fresh, local ingredients with gluten free options.  A glass case near the door was filled with a delicious looking selection of house made donuts and rolls but we have been (trying to be) health conscious lately so you will just have to judge those for yourselves!

Boyne City Morel Mushroom Festival

Next stop was the main event: the National Morel Mushroom Festival. The event was held in Boyne City, and took place over four days.  We meandered through the crowds of people looking to buy unique items and people looking to sell their creations. The craft booths were full of leather goods, kitchen items, bath and body products and varieties of foods and seasonings.

My favorite spot was a booth full of delicious honey products from My Honey and Me We chatted a bit with the bee keeper who generously let us try some honey samples. I will be locating their store in West Branch someday to find more. The cinnamon creamed honey is so amazing.

The line of people waiting to get into the restaurant tasting at the festival went around the block. The menu did not appear to have many gluten free items, so we decided to skip it and walked around the event a bit instead. The festival had a beer tent, a carnival and other scheduled events taking place throughout the weekend. Definitely a little something for everyone and plenty to choose from.

Finally, we bought some morel mushrooms. We were unable to attend the hunt, but that turned out to be a blessing in disguise. It was a bust. No one found any mushrooms on the trip, probably because they were all at the festival. We grabbed a half pound bag from a booth and felt completely satisfied with our purchase. When our trip came to an end the following week, we gobbled them up in a delicious pasta sauce made by none other than The Man of the House. We failed to photograph the sauce, it did not last long. To make your own at home, the ingredients were: butter, halved morel mushrooms, white wine, sauteed onion and garlic, thyme, and good old salt and pepper, use your imagination and enjoy.