Roses are red and violets are blue, but did you know there’s red-fleshed cider apples out there for you too? While we traditionally think of cider apples in a varying palette of green, yellow or red skins, these apples are truly special in their own way. Red-fleshed apples are distinctive with a beautiful red-hued flesh under the skin as well. After all, it what’s on the inside that really counts, right?
Ciders made with red-fleshed apples are what we really want from our secret admirer this year, and we have a handful of recommendations to get things started. Read on to learn more about these ciders that simply seem to be made for the upcoming annual day of love – but can be enjoyed any day beyond.
Haykin Family Cider Niedzwetzkyana
Colorado-based Haykin Family Cider harnessed the flavor and beauty of Niedzwetzkyana apples, originally from central Asia, and one of the earliest known red-fleshed apples. The crimson hue and tartness from the apples comes through beautifully, leading into great structure and acidity with every sip. It’s bright and tart, deliciously dry and brings forward notes of cherry and cranberry with a wonderfully smooth finish. | haykinfamilycider.com
Two K Farms 2019 Rosé Cider
Two K Farms based in Michigan utilized not one, but four, different red-fleshed apple varieties to make this dreamy drink. Its bright pink hue is as charming as can be, with fruity notes of watermelon. It packs a punch of flavor, almost like drinking candy, yet it’s wonderfully balanced with a subtle body. | twokfarms.com
Alpenfire Cider Glow Airlie Red
This pink-hued cider from Washington-based Alpenfire is nothing short of stunning. And it tastes just as good as it looks. Organically grown Airlie Red apples were pressed to produce this single varietal stunner, which was later matured in stainless steel. It features bright acidity and fruit-forward notes of strawberries and cranberries that lead into a lasting finish. | alpenfirecider.com
Union Hill Cider Co. Cosmic Rosé
Just by looking at the bottle of this beautifully light pink cider, you can tell it’s going to be dreamy. The label features the prominent Saddle Rock Mountain that towers high amongst Washington’s Wenatchee Valley apple-growing region. Union Hill married two of the cider world’s most trending apple varieties in making this sipper, Cosmic and Red-fleshed apples, resulting in a wildly flavorful, aromatic beverage. The intense flavor from the Cosmic apples results in a refreshing, juicy cider, paired with a hint of acidity from the red-fleshed fruit. It’s semi-sweet with a soft, yet tart, finish, making it a well-structured option for any occasion. | unionhillciderco.com
Left Foot Charley Otterson
The color of this cider is nothing short of captivating with its incredible crimson hue. But don’t let that juicy appearance fool you. This dry, single varietal cider made in Michigan from Otterson apples is perfectly balanced and entirely sippable. This red-fleshed variety is able to stand on its own, as it brings a great acidity and just the right amount of tannins to create a well-rounded cider. | leftfootcharley.com
ANXO Cidery Rosé Cider
Hailing from Washington D.C., this pretty-in-pink cider was made with Goldrush and Red-fleshed apples from Fruit Hill Orchard in Virginia and Snowdrift Cider Co. in Washington. It sips like a hybrid between a cider and a wine, with high acidity and just a hint of sweetness. The wine yeast and petillant carbonation work to make this a well-structured, unique cider. | anxocider.com
Albemarle Ciderworks Orchard Blush
Just as the name suggests, the pink, coral hue of this cider is on the lighter side, but that certainly doesn’t mean it’s lacking in flavor. According to Virginia-based Albemarle, Geneva Crab, Redfield, Dolgo Crab and another red-fleshed pollinator Crab that shall-not-be-named were combined to create this beauty. Orchard Blush is the first rosé cider Albemarle made, and they did it well. It’s robust, dry, flavorful and perfectly sippable. | albemarleciderworks.com
Molly Allen is a freelance writer and editor with a focus on food and beverage, travel and entertaining. In addition to Sip Magazine & Cidercraft, her work has been published in a number of national and regional publications including Taste of Home, Brides and Washington Tasting Room.