Local apples, local ciders


Check out the local hard ciders made here in Massachusetts.

Here in the United States, cider does not rival the popularity of beer. But this gap has started to narrow slightly in recent years.

Local producers like Downeast have spearheaded the cider revival in the United States, reminding the country of a time when cider was the most widely available alcoholic beverage.

Today, the benefits of cider are undeniable – their flavors are simple and refreshing, they take less energy to produce than beer (which must be heated or brewed), and many are made here in Massachusetts.

“People might not want to admit it, but for everyone who wants a DIY Double Secret, Double Barrel, Triple Jump IPA, there are 10 who want something sweet, easy and refreshing – it’s always high quality, ”said Pete McCoubrey, Downeast brand manager. “Ciders offer this accessible quality.

The following cider houses produce the hard drink in Massachusetts, often with their own apples and in small artisan batches. For sustainability, for a sense of belonging or just for a change, these ciders are worth checking out.

Downeast, East Boston

What started in Maine in 2011 is now one of the nation’s premier cider companies, and it’s based right here in Boston. This year Downeast celebrated its tenth anniversary and continues to grow as the cider category grows as well. “We are proud of the growth of the business,” said McCoubrey, “and we believe, as one of the top cider companies in the country, that we are also responsible for the growth of the category. While their pop-up bar right outside their cider house in Eastie’s shipyard just closed for the season, they’re serving up flights inside the bar on Marginal Street (no tours yet!). Downeast can also be found in stores as far west as Colorado, and they are shipped nationwide. 256, rue Marginal, n ° 32, Boston East.

Artifact Cider Project

Produced in Western Massachusetts, Artifact Cider Projectt now has a stylish bar in Central Square in Cambridge which opened a year ago. “The Station” offers over a dozen ciders in a 3,000 square foot space, all made in Florence, where the company has its other auction room, which debuted in 2014. Artifact makes cider in the northeast, for the northeast, respecting the cider-making tradition, but bringing the process into the modern era. 438 Massachusetts Ave., Unit A, Cambridge

Far from the tree

Owners Al and Denise Snape developed their cider chops when they lived in England in the 2000s. Far from the tree ages the cider in their cellar / tasting room on Jackson Street in Salem. The cider house focuses on dry apple-based ciders and sells wholesale throughout Massachusetts. Far from the Tree offers a few ciders year-round, and they also release seasonal iterations monthly – Ectoplasm, their September version, is a spooky lime green color, while their summer versions feature fruity flavors like peach and the cherry. 108 Jackson Street, Salem

Stormalong Cider

StormCider has a lot of heritage behind it. It’s made in Sherborn, which housed the world’s largest refined cider mill between 1880 and 1930, even exporting cider to England at the time. The cider house is named after Captain Alfred Bulltop Stormalong, an American folk hero from Massachusetts. Although Stormalong does not have a local sales hall, they do wholesale throughout New England. And they are currently cultivating their own orchard on their Sherborn farm. For a list of suppliers, see their website.

Lookout Farm Brewing and Cider Co.

Observation farm in the south of Natick is one of the oldest farms in the country still in operation. They’re known for their self-picking fruit and cider donuts in the fall, but in recent years they’ve started a brewing and cider business. Lookout makes its drinks with ingredients grown directly on its farm and powered by solar energy. This weekend, as their open-air restaurant closes for the season, they’re kicking off their winter dining experience on-site: The Greenhouse. Cider is also available for sale in their farm store. 89 Pleasant Street South, Natick

Bear Marsh Orchard

This little Ashfield cider house isn’t just cider – it also distills brandy. They often make other products on site, such as vinegars and jams. They only use their own apples, which means ciders can vary depending on the year or where they are in their aging process. “TO Bear Marsh Orchard“, reads their website,” we love the idea that cider produced on every property, by every maker, is different, and that it will also vary throughout its aging continuum. “This weekend, the farm is hosting its final tasting and bottle shop hours for this year – but there will be more to come. 1209 Hawley Road, Ashfield

Carr Cider House

Carr’s farm shop in Hadley, currently open Thursday through Sunday, sells cider as well as vinegars, cider syrup and their Ciderhouse cookbook. Their ciders are handcrafted with apples from their orchard overlooking the Connecticut River Valley. They don’t use herbicides or pesticides on their orchard, and the cider is fermented naturally (nothing added, nothing taken away). 295 River Drive, Hadley

Cellars of the Cider house

While the Côte-Nord farm was recently named the nation’s # 1 apple picking location by Yelp, their award-winning cider continues to be acclaimed. They exclusively use apples grown on their farm and squeeze and bottle everything on site. Their cider inventory includes dry, sweet, and dessert ciders, and their seasonal ciders, like raspberry and strawberry, rotate throughout the year. One of their base varieties, “summer”, won first place in the sweet category at the Great Lakes International Cider and Perry Competition in 2018. 45 Fern Avenue, Amesbury

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