Cider Corner: Letting Apples ‘Speak for Themselves’

​Since apples are the common denominator, Brooke Glover of Swilled Dog feels that her cidery needs to honor that main ingredient.

“Additional flavors are meant to complement the amazing apple flavor,” she told Brewer. “Consumers are still interested in sweeter ciders but I believe would be more interested in drier ciders if they were able to find and explore them on the shelf at the retailer level.”

Therein can lie a problem as she said, along with many other cideries that retailers are still hesitant to have a variety in cider on the shelf.

“I very much believe that consumers should feel free to enjoy whatever type of cider they like. There’s no right or wrong in cider,” she said. “It all depends on the person.

“I hear a lot of people saying “I don’t like cider” when they’ve only tried one type of cider. That’s like saying “I don’t like wine” when you hate anything sweet and have only tried a sweet wine.”

​Twin Star Orchards and Brooklyn Cider House​ use​s​ a mix of cider apples and heirloom apples and let the flavors shine on their own.

​Founder and Cidermaker Peter Yi said they try to keep it as pure as possible.

​”​We never add any additional flavors​,” he said​. ​”​Our Raw and Half Sour both undergo wild fermentation, so we want consumers to know they are natural ciders.

​”Yi added that the Raw can be a bit challenging for some ​consumers so ​the cidery will soon be releasing a natural cider that’s similar in flavor profile but friendlier for those not very familiar with this style of dry, funky natural cider.

​Glover said that although Swilled Dog make​s its own juice​, it​ also supplements​ with other juice since most of ​the cidery’s trees are still young.

​”​It takes a long time, a lot of tasting and blending to get the right juice to make the cider what you want​,” she said.​ That means looking for great suppliers that know their process and​ being​ consistent​.

​”​We want to work with growers that care about quality​,” she said.​

Photo courtesy Brooklyn Cider House

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