Top Ten Hard Ciders to Drink this Fall
Fall is on the way and that means it’s almost time to put away your short shorts, frolic in the leaves and imbibe your favorite hard cider. Craft hard cider is one of the most popular drinks to sip on as the season shifts from the bright colors of summer to the muted, oranges, browns and yellows of autumn. Chilled Magazine has decided to make it easier for you to pick a hard cider by creating a list of ten hard ciders to try this year.
1. Harpoon Craft Cider (Boston)
Located in Boston, in the center of arguably the most beautiful fall region in the United States, Harpoon is known mostly for their hefeweizen UFO and their other craft-brewed favorites. They also make a mighty tasty hard cider. Harppon Craft Cider is the perfect complement to the changing seasons. If you still have some when winter starts, I suggest mixing it with Harpoon’s Winter Warmer for a spicy treat.
2. Woodchuck Hard Cider (Vermont)
Opened in the early 90’s, Woodchuck is one of the American hard cider pioneers. They are well known for having one the largest lists of ciders available. Their core styles are Amber, Granny Smith, 802 Dark & Dry, Pear, Raspberry and Hopsation. They also have many season ciders as well as Private Reserves, Farmhouse Selects and their Cellar Series.
3. Rogue Cider (Oregon)
Well-known for their award-winning beer and the recent addition of a distillery, Rogue has decided to dip its toes into the world of craft cider. Their first two offerings are 7 Hop Cider and Fruit Salad Cider. If they are anything like the other Rogue products on the market, these hard ciders will be mighty tasty.
4. Sonoma Cider (California)
Not one of the more well-known ciders on this list, Sonoma gets its spot because of Anvil. This organic hard cider is aged in bourbon barrels and even contains a dose of their proprietary barrel-proof bourbon flavor. Sonoma also makes The Hatchet (Apple) and The Pitchfork (Pear).
5. Crispin Cider (California)
Not to be confused with wacky actor Crispin Glover, Crispin Cider is an artisanal, gluten free hard cider that isn’t made to just be a replacement for beer. Their large collections of ciders includes Crispin Original, Crispin Brut, Pacific Pear, Blackberry Pear, Honey Crisp, The Saint, Bohemian, Lion Belge as well as barrel aged limited releases.
6. Strongbow (England)
The first hard cider on the list from outside of the US, Strongbow is one of the titans of the cider world. Made since 1962, Strongbow is available all over the world and can easily be found on draught from Los Angeles to Edinburgh. If you happen to find yourself in England, you try Strongbow Pear, Strongbow Dark Fruit and Strongbow Citrus Edge. Fear not, Americans. You can still try Strongbow Gold Apple and Strongbow Honey & Apple.
7. Angry Orchard (Ohio)
Angry Orchard’s founders began experimenting with the production of hard cider back in 1995. That was right about the time craft brewing was on the rise, but they wanted to make hard cider. The cidery currently produces Crisp Apple, Green Apple, Apple Ginger, Traditional Dry, Elderflower as well as their Cider House Collection.
8. Ace Premium Hard Ciders (California)
For the past fifteen years, the makers of Ace have been on a mission to remove the stigma surrounding hard ciders that they are cloying and taste too much like candy. They are doing this by rolling out myriad unique and tasty cider creations including Apple Cider, Apple Honey Cider, Berry Cider, Joke Cider, Perry Cider, Pineapple Cider and Pumpkin Cider.
9. Samuel Smith Organic Cider (England)
Samuel Smith has been in production in Yorkshire, England since 1758. That’s definitely enough time to get things right. The brewery is much better known for its multitude of fancy, delicious brews, but they also make a very popular cider. This dry cider is made using only, natural, organic products.
10. Johnny Appleseed (New York)
I’m sure by now you’ve seen the commercials for this brand. They are all over ESPN. With this release, Anheuser Busch is dipping its toes into the hard cider market. People might be weary of purchasing a hard cider made by such a large company, but you don’t know if you like something until you try it.