Chicago is the place to be in February if you’re a cider lover. There’s not one, not two but three different events happening over a span of a week. Attend workshops and presentations, tastings and parties as you celebrate and learn about cider. If you’re not keen on the Windy City then try events in Québec and upstate New York as the cider love spreads across North America in February and March.
Chicago Cider Week | February 1-9
Head to the Windy City for a jam-packed week of events revolving around cider. Don’t miss a cider comedy show, a karaoke night where they’ll sling ciders and learn what a “Chicago Handshake” is with Blake’s Hard Cider. Now in its third year, Chicago Cider Week brings together people from across the country to join in on the festivities. It would be an understatement to say that there’s something for every type of cider lover.
CiderCon | February 5-8
As if there was another reason to be in Chicago during the first week of February, the annual Cider Conference— aka CiderCon — is also happening. Exclusively for trade, industry and media, cideries both old and new can attend a workshop from the Cider Institute of North America, get the opportunity to network with others from around the world and view presentations on natural cider, navigating the digital world and cider apple diversity. For those just getting into the cider scene the conference also offers a Beginner Cidermakers Q&A and opportunities for a variety of tastings.
Chicago Cider Summit | February 9
Featuring over 150 ciders, cocktails and apple spirits, this is an event that you don’t want to miss if you consider yourself a cider lover. Enjoy the cider cocktail lounge and vote to determine the “People’s Choice” brand. A general admissions ticket will get you 16 tasting tickets and a souvenir tasting glass. Spend an extra $10 for VIP status which will let you into the summit before everyone else.
The Gathering of the Farm Cideries | March 2
Farm-based cideries from across New York will gather in Albany at Nine Pin Cider to sample exclusive batches of cider. You’ll be able to purchase some of these rare, special ciders on the spot in growler, can or bottle form. The last four years of this event have sold out, so reserve a spot now. And if you were concerned about being hungry, cast your worries aside, the event will have pizza and burgers provided so there’s no chance of a hangry spell.
Le Mondial De Cidres | March 1-3
Get a taste of the Québec cider scene over this weekend filled with events ranging from speed tastings to a dance party. Chefs, mixologists and cheesemakers will all be on hand to guide you through pairing ciders with their creations. And if you’re hoping for some sweets, look no further than the ice ciders which will be paired with a chocolate maker’s confections.