Cider News – October 21, 2016


Here’s a recap of the best cider news worth sharing:

Cider Week NYC

1) Cider Week NYC kicks off this weekend with dozens of dinners, tastings, tap takeovers, and celebrations throughout the city. Check out the slate of events at cider bastions Wassail, Jimmy’s No. 43, Murray’s Cheese, The Queens Kickshaw, and Cardiff Giant, and don’t miss the cider festivals like Gluten Free Oktoberfest, Porktoberfest, The Lower East Cider Fest, and Applepalooza.

2) According to Governor Cuomo’s office, there are now 24 Farm Cideries in New York State. The groundbreaking legislation—which dictates that a Farm Cidery must use only crops grown within the state—was signed into law in October 2013. (According to my United States Cider Map, New York has more total cider producers than any other state at 67.)

3) Food & Wine shares its 15 Best Places to Drink Cider. And Coastal Living shares its 19 Must-Visit Coastal Cideries.

4) Schlafly Beer in Saint Louis has teamed up with Sandford Orchards in Devon to release a Proper Cider Sampler Pack. The four limited-release ciders—Dry-Hopped, Scrumpy, Vintage Cask, and Raspberry—will be available throughout Schlafly’s distribution area. Check out #ProperCider on Twitter to learn more.

5) Sheppy’s Cider in Somerset is 200 years old and still going strong. Susanna Forbes of chats with sixth-generation cidermaker David Sheppy about the company’s rich history and bright future.

6) The Ciderologist reflects on orchards, hedgerows, and traditional cider and perry in Season of Mists and Mellow Fruitfulness. If autumnal nostalgia isn’t your cup of tea, try his humorous—and occasionally juvenile—Cider Apple A-Z.

7) Cider Chat interviews Marie Tanaka and Tsukasa Ono about Japan’s cider scene.

8) Are you ready for Central European cider? Slovak producer Opre’ Cider—based in Košice, the second largest city in Slovakia—produces a 4.7% pure-juice cider, a 3.1% pure-juice perry, and a 4.3% hopped cider. Follow Opre’ Cider on Facebook to learn more. And Czech producer Tátův Sad—based in Lisnice, about 30 kilometers from Prague—produces a 5.6% dry cider and a 4.9% semi-dry cider. Follow Tátův Sad on Facebook to learn more.

9) On tap this weekend: Pour the Core in Boston, the Morton Arboretum Cider and Ale Festival in suburban Chicago, the Minnesota Cider Fair in Jordan, the Hard Core Cider Tour in San Luis Obispo, California, and the closing weekend of BC Cider Week in British Columbia.

10) Along Came a Cider reviews Woodchuck’s June and Juice Juniper Hard Cider and Rootstock Ciderworks Hopped Hard Cider. Cider Says reviews Worley’s Mendip HillsReverend Nat’s Revival, and Alpenfire Spark! Cider Society reviews Foggy Ridge Serious CiderAaron Burr Appinette, and Ribela Sidra Natural EcolóxicaThe Cider Drinker reviews Turners Russet Cider. Cider Steve reviews Cotswold Side Burns and Ramborn Cider Farmhouse. And Real Cider Reviews tries Hillbilly’s Sweet Julie Cider (and chats with Bill Bradshaw).

Have a great weekend!


Cider News – October 14, 2016


Here’s a recap of the best cider news worth sharing:

BC Cider Week 2016

1) The second annual BC Cider Week takes place October 15-22 with cider events in Vancouver, on Vancouver Island, and in the Okanagan Valley. Follow BC Cider Week on Facebook for event details. (And visit my newly-updated North American Cider Map to view the province’s 30+ cider producers.)

2) Online drinks magazine Punch explores traditional Basque and Asturian ciders in A Guide to the World’s Funkiest Ciders. (La Sidra reports in Defending our bottle that cider producers in Asturias are considering legal action against improper use of their iconic sidra natural bottle.)

3) The 2016 Australian Cider Awards Results have been released. Tasmanian cidermaker Willie Smith’s earns its second straight Best in Show award, this time for its French Blend Limited Release Cider. For more, read Australian Cider Awards: Willie Smith’s a winner in The Australian and listen to Cider Chat Episode 31 with Sam Reid.

4) Pete Brown joins the Food Programme on BBC Radio 4 for The Apple: How British a Fruit? And according to Susanna Forbes at, a strong apple harvest should result in A great year for English cider.

5) “Back in the 1960s and 1970s, cider pubs had a reputation for being rough and ready places, but we’re not like that at all.” The Unicorn Inn is named 2016 National Cider Pub of the Year. Learn more in CAMRA crowns Wincanton pub best in UK for cider from Somerset Live. (Also of interest: the Bristol Cider Shop re-opens this weekend after relocating to bigger premises.)

6) #OrchardCiderYear continues at Poverty Lane Orchards & Farnum Hill Ciders with plenty of harvesting and pressing pictures for your viewing pleasure.

7) The Cork Report inteviews David Biun of Eden Specialty Ciders. And Cider Chat interviews Didier Bédu of Interprofession Des Appellations Cidricoles, the organization that administers the AOC/AOP appellations for Cidre, Poiré, Pommeau, and Calvados.

8) New Jersey’s Ironbound Hard Cider Shows Its Six Packs. Oregon’s Apple Outlaw collects apples for its Backyard Orchard Community Cider. And San Diego’s Serpentine Cider hopes to raise $15,000 via Indiegogo for its tasting room and kitchen.

9) On tap this weekend: Citizen Cider Ciderfest in Middlebury, Vermont. The Shaker Harvest Dinner and Cider Festival in Enfield, New Hampshire. Angry Orchard Harvest Fest in Walden, New York. Pour the Core Philly in Philadelphia. Blue Bee Cider Grand Opening Weekend in Richmond, Virginia. CiderFest NC in Asheville, North Carolina. PDX City Of Cider in Portland, Oregon. And the Nottingham Robin Hood Beer and Cider Festival in Nottingham, England.

10) Along Came a Cider reviews Sietsema Lemongrass and Sietsema Slightly Sweet. Cider Says reviews Ole Swede Blend of 9 CiderLongdrop Over Yonder, and One Tree Crisp AppleCider Society reviews Nine Pin Hunny Pear, Citizen Cider Stan Up, and Descendant Cider Origin. And The Cider Drinker video reviews Obertin Calvados Pays d’Auge and Celtic Marches Lily the Pink.

Have a great weekend!


Cider News – October 7, 2016


Here’s a recap of the best cider news worth sharing:

Pete Brown - The Apple Orchard
Credit: Bill Bradshaw / The Telegraph

1) Pete Brown—co-author of World’s Best Ciders—wants you to Say hello to The Apple Orchard. The Apple Orchard: The Story of Our Most English Fruit is available at (now) and (October 25th). Learn more about the book in Brown’s Apples: the forbidden fruit at the core of the human story, or follow along on his recent visit to the Thatchers Cider orchards.

2) “Perry is the epitome of British terroir – the taste of a specific piece of landscape and heritage.” In Praise of Perry Pears is the latest reflection from The Ciderologist.

3) Freelance writer Jordan Kettley Werner spent the summer studying craft cider in Ireland. Her Cider in Ireland posts are an insightful look at the past, present, and future of the Irish cider industry.

4) USA Today lists its 10 great apple cider tasting rooms for a fall treat. Gothamist lists The 11 Best Hard Cider Bars & Restaurants In NYC. And Sip Northwest announces the cider and perry winners in its Best of the Northwest 2016.

5) Registration for CiderCon 2017 is now open. The conference will be held February 7-10 at the Hilton Chicago. A tentative schedule of workshop sessions and events is now available. (Meredith Collins and I join forces again to discuss building a strong online presence for your cider company.)

6) Cider Chat interviews Agathe Letellier of Manoir d’Apreval in the Pays d’Auge of Normandy.

7) Results for the 2016 Australian Cider Awards will soon be posted. Bill Bradshaw—the international cider expert for this year’s awards—shares his thoughts upon sampling a bottle of POM Cider made in 1976 (!) by wine professional Gary Baldwin. The festivities conclude on Saturday with 100+ ciders to sample at the Australian Cider Festival in Melbourne.

8) On tap in Europe: The Big Apple – Harvestime in Herefordshire. La Fais’sie d’Cidre in Jersey. The opening weekend of Gijón de Sidra in Asturias. And Sicera 2016 in the Valle d’Aosta of Italy.

9) On tap in the US: The closing weekend of Cider Week Finger Lakes in New York. Heirloom Apple Day at Scott Farm in Dummerston, Vermont. CiderGrass at Stem Ciders in Denver. Cider Fest 2016 at Orondo Cider Works in Washington. The Gorge Cider Adventure in the Hood River Valley of Oregon. Bauman’s Harvest Festival in Gervais, Oregon. And the Hard Core Cider Tour in Santa Cruz, California.

10) Cider Says reviews Wandering Aengus Wanderlust, Honeywood Winery Hard Apple CiderStem Ciders Branch and Bramble, and Hecks Somerset Tremletts Bitter. The Milled Apple reviews Angry Orchard Crisp AppleSipology reviews Uncle John’s Atomic Apple. The Cider Blog reviews Ramborn Farmhouse Cider. The Cider Drinker reviews Dunkertons Perry, Kopparberg Mixed Fruit, and Henney’s Autumn Gold. Cider Steve reviews Ross on Wye’s The Broome Blend Cider. Cider Sense reviews Rich’s Farmhouse Dry. And Real Cider Reviews tries Darkes Howler Cider.

Have a great weekend!


Cider News – September 30, 2016


Here’s a recap of the best cider news worth sharing:

Eric Shatt - Redbyrd Orchard Cider

1) Cider Week Finger Lakes kicks off on Saturday. The region is perhaps best known for its aromatic Rieslings and Gewürztraminers, but the glacial soils in the Finger Lakes also produce intensely flavorful apples. Check out the schedule of events and read up on the region’s excellent cidermakers.

2) Sofia Payson writes for Cider Culture on Biodynamic Cider: The Other Organic. The article features Eric Shatt (pictured above) and Deva Maas of Redbyrd Orchard Cider in the Finger Lakes. Also at Cider Culture: Holly Tennant writes the fourth installment of Women Making Waves in the Hard Cider World.

3) Mike Pomranz writes for Food & Wine on 10 Awesome American Ciders You Should Be Drinking. And Christian Conahan writes for Cidercraft on 5 Coffee-infused Ciders to Put a Pep in Your Step.

4) GQ tags along with Wayside Cider’s Alex Wilson for an in-depth tutorial on How to Make Your Own Cider at Home. (While the books mentioned in the article are great, the well-illustrated Apples to Cider: How to Make Cider at Home is an excellent entry-level guide that features the collective wisdom of the Farnum Hill Ciders crew.)

5) Brazilian gypsy brewer André Junqueira has released three ciders made from apples grown in the mountainous Serra Gaúcha region. Épo Hop is dry hopped with Citra, Centennial, and Cascade; Épo Hibi features pineapple juice and hibiscus flowers; and Épo Ambu is aged on amburana (an indigenous wood used in cachaça production) and French oak. To learn more, visit Morada Cia Etílica on Facebook, or fire up Google Translate for a look at Épo: a primeira sidra (com ‘s’ mesmo) artesanal brasileira.

6) Two new cider-themed restaurants in Europe: Pom Pom in Göteborg, Sweden and Le Sistrot in Quimper, Brittany. According to “[Pom Pom] offers, in addition to quality cider, generous opening hours and a wallet-friendly menu including seafood, pizza bianca and steak tartare.” And Le Sistrot—created by two brothers with a passion for good food and drink—is dedicated to guiding its patrons in their discovery of cider. Initial reviews for Le Sistrot are overwhelmingly positive, and Darlene Hayes called it “amazing” after a recent visit. (Also of interest: Cider Chat interviews Heleen Nobel and Eelco Huizinga of Appels en Peren, a cider and perry bottle shop in Amsterdam.)

7) Seattle Cider Company has been acquired by the French agricultural cooperative Agrial. Agrial’s beverage division—known for its Ecusson, Loïc Raison, and Kérisac brands—is the largest cider producer in France. Seattle Cider will continue to operate independently and maintain control of its day-to-day operations.

8) How can changing the way apples are grown in the orchard result in more desirable cider? Cornell research points the way to better hard cider explains that smaller apples have a higher concentration of tannins, which lend desirable astringency and bitterness to fermented cider. (If orchards are too civilized for you, try Shacksbury Cider is saving apple varieties on the verge of disappearing forever from Tasting Table.)

9) On tap this weekend: Cider Fest at Embark Craft Ciderworks in Williamson, New York. Vander Fest at Vander Mill in Spring Lake, Michigan. Virtue Apple Fest at Virtue Cider in Fennville, Michigan. Milwaukee Cider Fest in Wisconsin. Vashon CiderFest in Vashon, Washington. The Rocky Mountain Cider Association Hard Cider Tasting at Cider Days in Lakewood, Colorado. And the closing weekend of Montana Cider Week.

10) Along Came a Cider reviews 1911’s Founders Reserve Hopped Hard CiderCider Says shares tasting notes from a visit to Schilling Cider House and reviews Stem Ciders Remedy Dry HoppedRustic Roots Organic Snow Cider Dry AppleEden Heirloom Blend 2013 Apple Brandy Barrel Aged Ice Cider, and 2 Towns Nice & Naughty Imperial Spiced CiderDrinking Cider reviews Cider Riot! Rudy’s Cranberry Hibiscus Cider. The Milled Apple reviews Stowe Cider Tips Updrycider reviews Oliver’s Gold Rush #4. Cider Society reviews Aspall Perronelle’s Blush English CiderCider Creek Premium Farmhouse, and Hecks Vintage Dry 2013 Cider. CiderScene reviews Hazlitt’s Cider Tree with Citra HopsThe Cider Drinker shares his Orchard Box September Unboxing and reviews Turners Medium Cider. Cider Steve reviews BumbleBee Hard Cider. And Cider Sense reviews the Vintage, Farmhouse, and Heritage ciders from Cornish Orchards.

Have a great weekend!


Cider News – September 23, 2016


Here’s a recap of the best cider news worth sharing:

Euskal Sagardoa

1) Cidermakers and apple growers from throughout the Basque Country have banded together to create a Protected Denomination of Origin for Basque ciders. The proposed designationEuskal Sagardoa in Basque, Sidra Natural del País Vasco in Spanish—would apply to ciders that are made with 100% Basque apples and that meet a certain quality standard.

2) The next Oregon State University Craft Cidery Startup Workshop will be held November 7-11 in Portland. The instructors are Joel VandenBrink of Seattle Cider Company and Nick Gunn and James Kohn of Wandering Aengus Ciderworks.

3) A bumper crop of cidermaker profiles: Urban Tree Cidery in Atlanta; James Creek Ciderhouse in North Carolina; Kennebec Cider Company in Maine; Mad Moon Hard Cider in Columbus, Ohio; 1859 Cider Co. in Salem, Oregon; Hidden Star Orchards in California; and One Tree Hard Cider in Spokane.

4) Maddie LaKind writes for Make It Better on 8 Must-Try Midwest Ciders for Fall. The list includes producers from Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, and Illinois. And Spike Carter writes for Bloomberg on Ditch Your Craft Beer for These Eight Complex Ciders. The list includes ciders from West County, Farnum Hill, and Aaron Burr.

5) Cider Chat gears up for Franklin County CiderDays in Massachusetts with two recent episodes: Going to CiderDays and CiderDays 2016 Schedule. (Not mentioned is that Brian Rutzen of The Northman and Dan Pucci of Wassail are my special guests for Sunday morning’s Cider Appreciation 101 guided tasting. Come join us!)

6) The National Association of Cider Makers has unveiled its new website. The association represents the interests of large-scale and small-scale cider producers throughout the UK. (NACM Communications Director Gabe Cook—better known as The Ciderologist—shares his personal thoughts on an inevitable cider revolution in From New World to Old – Innovation is Key for Cider.)

7) The Great Welsh Beer and Cider Festival is underway in Cardiff. As with most CAMRA festivals, the cider list features ciders and perries from local and regional cidermakers.

8) The inaugural Montana Cider Week—September 25 to October 1—will celebrate the state’s craft ciders and orchards. Keep an eye on the BudWood Cooperative Facebook Page for updates.

9) Also on tap this weekend: Honey, I Fermented the Apples in Oxford, Connecticut, Palisade Cider Bash in Palisade, Colorado, and Cider Swig in Gig Harbor, Washington.

10) Along Came a Cider reviews Angry Orchard Walden HollowCider Says reviews Stem Ciders Blood Orange CyserStem Ciders Malice, Number 12 Black Currant DryNumber 12 Sparkling Dry, and Number 12 Chestnut Semi-Dry. Drinking Cider reviews Starcut Ciders PhuzzThe Milled Apple reviews Blue Toad Blue Ridge BlondeSipology reviews Left Foot Charley Cinnamon Girl. Cider Society reviews Nine Pin The IdaredNine Pin Blueberry, and Embark Craft Ciderworks The Pippin. The Cider Drinker video reviews Herefordshire Cider Company HCC Gold and Circle Cider’s Cat’s Tongue. Cider Steve reviews McCrindle’s 2015 Vintage Cider. Cider Sense reviews Worley’s Red Hen. And Real Cider Reviews tries Spreyton’s Vintage Select 2016.

Have a great weekend!