For all of our gluten-free friends who often find themselves standing in bottle shops, staring at a bazillion hard ciders — their de facto drink of choice in a beer shop — wondering “What the heck is the difference?” the guys over at Foobooz have you covered. They tried over 30 local ciders and nailed down the best ciders for every taste, from the ciders that will please the craft beer lovers of the worlds to the health conscious to those who just want something to pair with their cheese. You can check out their options for the health conscious below, then hop over here to see the rest of ’em. (Just note: If you have celiac, they did not check to see if all of the ciders were gluten-free, most ciders just naturally are.) Read more »
Hard cider is having a bit of a moment. Once a niche-y thing enjoyed only by brew geeks and, for two weeks, by your annoying friend who went to the UK on his honeymoon and came back complaining about the lack of proper cider in “the States,” it is now a serious business in and around Philly, with small-time producers ramping up production and local farms putting out excellent, hand-crafted product using their own fruits. What’s more, we keep seeing it show up more and more frequently both on and behind the bars we frequent.
So if there was ever a time to dive in and see what all the fuss is about, it’s now. Craft cider is interesting in that the flavors and styles are at least as varied as with beer (maybe more so), and on par with the variations in wine. And this kind of broad spectrum allows for many entry points into the world of grown-up apple juice. Recently, we sat down and did a massive tasting of some 30 bottles from every local cidery we could find, and assembled this list of the best ways for beer drinkers, cork dorks, spirit enthusiasts and the gluten-averse to get into cider. So check it out below and see if there’s something that catches your eye.
If you’re keeping up with trends, you know what the answer is: cider.
Today, Wednesday, August 19th, Johnny Brenda’s is celebrating the dog days of summer with Philadelphia Brewing, Commonwealth Ciders and Rowhouse Spirits. The Fishtown fixture is hosting a summer evening of cocktails, beer cocktails and beer and cider from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. A portion of all proceeds will benefit the Pennsylvania SPCA which just opened a satellite location on Frankford Avenue.
In addition to all the drinks, Johnny Brenda’s will also be grilling hot dogs, and with every donation to the SPCA, you get a hot dog.
The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society’s (PHS) Pop-Up Beer Garden will be making two special appearances this winter. The highly successful pop-up will be indoors this February and March. The garden will appear in the rotunda at the Shops at Liberty Place from February 14th to March 8th. The dates are a tie in to the PHS’s Philadelphia Flower Show.
Speaking of the Flower Show, there will also be a beer garden during the Flower Show, which runs February 28th to March 8th at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
The pop-up beer gardens will host music, movies, food and of course beer and other libations. The PHS will be debuting its PHS Horticulture Cider by Wyndridge Farm Cidery at both locations.
Now that it’s officially fall and everyone is being blasted with pumpkin in beer, cheesecake, lattes and anything else that is drinkable or edible, take a moment this weekend to remember the original fall food: the apple.
This Saturday at the Navy Yard will be the 2nd annual Pour the Core Festival, the hard cider festival of Philly’s fall. The Festival runs from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m.–hours filled with locally-produced and internationally-sourced ciders, more than 75 in total. The event will feature local favorites like the artfully crafted Frecon’s Cidery Crabby Granny, best-selling US brands like event sponsor Woodchuck Hard Cider, and a variety of imported ciders from Spain, England and elsewhere.
Petruce et al. is adding to their list of et al’s with a new cider program. In addition to wine, beer and cocktails, Petruce has gotten serious about cider. Tim Kweeder, general manager and wine director, introduced the program a few weeks ago and has since been building up the list of ciders.
Though subject to change, so far Kweeder has received products from Spain, Germany, and Michigan, each with a different taste. From Spain’s Basque Country, Kweeder has a small-production cider with a note of green apple; from Germany, a cider made from 100% Speierling apples; and from Michigan, an American-produced cider available on draft. Kweeder is only offering ciders made from 100% juice and fermented with natural yeast. To see the full list, click here.
Guests can enjoy the cider in 3 oz. tasting pours, full 5 oz. pours, or by the bottle. Prices range from $5 to $46.
Petruce et al. [Foobooz]
The four-course dinner will have two seatings (6-6:30 p.m. and 8-8:30 p.m.) and will cost $55 per person. Each course is paired with Frecon Farms cider. Call 215-732-3331 for reservations.
Tria Taproom quietly opened Saturday evening at 20th and Walnut Streets. The former Rum Bar has been totally transformed into a minimal space where the focus is clearly on the bar’s forty taps that pour beer, wine, cider and soda. We stopped in shortly after Tria Taproom opened yesterday at 4 p.m., to check out what was pouring as well as what was coming out of the kitchen.
In addition to Tria’s well-trained staff, Tria Taproom welcomes you with an iPad. From the iPad menu you can check out what’s available to drink and if you’re a true nerd, you can see just how much is left in the keg. You can also do this from your smartphone as well at tria.bevchek.com.
First some Rioja, and now some cider.
Tinto’s second installment of their monthly pairing dinners is welcoming in the world of European cider. Every year in the Basque country, cider houses tap their cider barrels, and the people gather together, drinking the apple wine straight from those barrels. It’s called the “txotx,” and Tinto wants to join in on the celebrations.
On Thursday, April 4th, at 7pm, sidra (cider) will be poured from three regions in Spain and France, from Asturias to Irouleguy, and their accompanying menu looks stellar.
The dinner will only set you back $50 a person, and as is tradition, the ciders are bottomless. Make your reservation soon.