By Nick Thomas
Hello, and welcome to our first Regional Roundup where we highlight five ciders from a specific region of North America.
For our first region, we’re covering cideries located in Hudson Valley, New York. Aside from the temptation to make a cheap Big Apple joke, Hudson Valley is one of the largest apple-producing regions in the United States and is practically overflowing with award-winning cideries. Heck, they even have their own annual Hudson Valley Apple Festival—an entire day devoted to apples that ends with fireworks. When was the last time you blew something up in the name of fruit? Never? Because you’re not Hudson Valley!
- Doc’s Draft Hard Apple Cider (Warwick, New York)
ABV: 5 percent
Highlights: Created by the guys at Warwick Valley Winery & Distillery who really know how to craft a tasty bevvie, their Hard Apple Cider is a crisp and effervescent semi-dry cider that’s big on apple flavor.
- Bad Seed Bourbon Barrel Reserve (Highland, New York)
Highlights: There’s nothing better than fresh, mulled cider spiked with a (generous) splash of bourbon. But coming in at a close second (or first?) is cider that’s been aged in old bourbon barrels, like Bad Seed’s dry and tart Bourbon Barrel Reserve.
- Slyboro Ciderhouse Ice Harvest (Granville, New York)
ABV: 11 percent
Highlights: It seems like every year parts of New York make national news for being buried under snow, but for ice cider, that ain’t a bad thing. Slyboro’s Ice Harvest is a dessert cider that’s slightly spicy but has a strong fruity presence. Look out for their annual Wassailing festival come January.
- Naked Flock Original Hard Cider (Warwick, New York)
Highlights: Naked Flock is a cider brand created by New York’s Applewood Winery, so it’s no surprise that they choose to go with a classic Champagne yeast for their cider, which is balanced with fresh, local honey for a touch of sweetness.
- Kettleborough Dry Cider (New Paltz, New York)
Highlights: Kettleborough simply sums up the flavor profile of their Dry cider as: “Think ‘Dry Apple Procecco.’” This cider balances the green-apple flavor of the Granny Smith apple with the acidity of the Northern Spy variety for a unique spin on a traditional dry cider.
For the full list of Hudson Valley cider companies, check out the Hudson Valley Cider Alliance.
Photo courtesy of Hudson Valley Cider Alliance