THE HUDSON VALLEY IS CIDER COUNTRY, and there’s no better time to explore the variety of ciders made locally than right now. Lower in alcohol than wine and many beers, the lively balance of fruit, acid and astringent tannins make it perfect for the hotter days of summer and an excellent accompaniment to lighter fare—fish, grilled chicken and semi-soft cheeses, as well as spicy, salty, smokey foods. Try it with Thai and Indian curries. Artisanal hard ciders range widely in flavor and style, from sparkling to still, sweet to dry. There’s even a champagne-style cider. Take a tour at these six cideries and you’ll get the chance to sample almost all the styles.
Nine Pin Cider Works
Take a trip to New York’s first farm cidery. Nine Pin, based in downtown Albany, creates off-dry ciders using 100% local New York apples and fruits. Visit the tasting room for a production tour, offered once a month, and stay to taste Nine Pin’s traditional cider, an off-dry sparkling cider, or the raspberry specialty cider made with early season apples and late season raspberries.
Fishkill Farms/Treasury Cider
A popular destination for sustainable and organic pick-your-own fruits and veggies, Fishkill Farms produces Treasury Cider from heirloom apples grown on the family-owned farm. Enjoy the farm-to-glass experience, award-winning flavors and stunning orchard views at the Treasury Cider Garden, open weekends June-October, or visit the tasting room off-season.
Grab your friends and head to the Angry Orchard innovation cider house in Walden, where guests can enjoy a variety of events including game nights, guided tours, themed trivia nights, and yoga classes, among others. Enjoy a complimentary flight of cider in the tasting room or near the bonfire and take in the scenic landscape of the Shawangunk Mountains.
Orchard Hill Cider Mill
Experience the flavor of the Hudson Valley Cider Revival at the Empire Room and Cider Garden at Orchard Hill. Located at the 109 year old Soons Family Orchard, Orchard Hill features apple and peach picking in season and a well-stocked farm store. Evocative architecture combined with award-winning ciders and Pommeau (a blend of unfermented cider and apple brandy) make this a must-stop destination.
Brooklyn Cider House
Located at Twin Star Orchard in New Paltz, Brooklyn Cider House is a family-friendly and pet-friendly destination. Enjoy award-winning craft ciders along with wood-fired pizzas and burgers. There’s also NYS farm beer and wines. Plus, you can pick apples in the fall. Spend a day at the farm with your whole family.
Doc’s Draft Cider
Walk among the over 65 different varieties of apple trees and understand the flavors behind Doc’s Draft Ciders. Located at Warwick Valley Winery & Distillery, the Doc’s Draft Orchard welcomes guests to enjoy crisp, seasonal ciders including the Hard Sour Cherry Cider throughout the summer and the popular Pumpkin Cider in the fall.
Plus, check out the annual summertime festival, Cider Week Hudson Valley, when you can explore limited-edition ciders at the orchards where they are made, all-day orchard blowouts, pairing dinners and more. This year’s event runs June 7 through June 16.