Apple Cider Products

Sweet Cider

Our Sweet Cider is made from apples picked from the trees, washed and stored at room temperature until the apples have fully ripened. We press the juice with a rack and cloth press and let it sit overnight to let the natural enzymes enhance the flavor. The result is a golden rich full flavored drink that will remind you of the cider of years gone past. It is free of chemicals and preservatives and is unpasteurized. Thus, it will remain fresh for about two weeks in refrigeration. After that, it will start to ferment. (Some people like it with a little naturally carbonated "zip".)

Sweet cider is essentially the same as fresh apple juice when it is processed with the factory steps of filtration, pasteurization and chemical preservation immediately after being pressed. It is often made from left over dessert apples that are bland and uninteresting. Even when an orchard blends the juice with a mixture of tart and sweet apples, the blend doesn't match the richness of our cider that always includes either Liberty or GoldRush apple juice.

You can purchase sweet cider to make cider vinegar, cider syrup and or hard fermented cider all described below.

Cider Vinegar

Cider vinegar can be made by allowing fermented cider to be exposed to air.  The oxygen present converts the alcohol to vinegar through the action of naturally present acetobacter. 

Cider Syrup

We have made cider syrup by condensing pure GoldRush Sweet Cider with a small amount of cinnamon in a gentle boiling process. It can be thickened by adding some whole organic sugar and taking the mixture through the first stage of candy making. Once bottled, it will keep indefinitely.

The syrup is dark golden brown with a rich sweet/tart flavor that adds zest to a pancake syrup, or a pork chop or a baked salmon glaze. It can be added to a marinade recipe for extra flavor or as a substitute for honey and lemon in a dressing for a fresh fruit salad. Use it as a topping on vanilla ice cream or dribble it over a hot slice of apple pie. Or just eat it straight off the spoon.

Hard Cider

Hard cider is fermented sweet cider where most of the natural sugar has been converted to alcohol.  We make some hard cider for our personal use from the sweet cider of our apples  You can purchase our apple juice and do the same with the yeast naturally present in our orchard.   These are multiple species of yeast that require a slow low temperature fermentation for a rich full flavor.  Once the primary fermentation is finished, you can rack the cider into stainless steel tanks for the secondary fermentation where the malic acid is converted to lactic acid yielding a smoother taste and slightly effervescent cider naturally carbonated by the malo-lactic fermentation.  All of this requires at least six months and sometimes more.  This process yields what is referred to as a farmhouse cider in that it uses what is naturally available at the farm and is slow and unhurried in the farmhouse cellar.

As noted above, these ciders are fermented until the yeast has naturally finished its work without being stopped artificially.  For those who prefer a sweeter hard cider, hard ciders can be back sweetened before drinking.  Adding about 2 tablespoons of table sugar to a 750 ml bottle will give you a sweeter hard cider with a bit more of an apple flavor. Play with it.  Just remember that these ciders are "live" and any yeast present might start to ferment the added sugar and the carbon dioxide from the fermentation will add pressure to the bottle!

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