In college I was never the biggest beer or hard liquor fan, and so I never really had a drink of choice. That was until I heard about hard cider - from a friend of mine who was making his own jug of it in his room. Angry Orchard was my drink of choice from then on, but it was news to me that there were so many varieties. Fast forward a couple years later, and although I now enjoy the occasional beer and mixed drink, cider always seems to draw me in. I have tasted many different brands and now have my favorites.
So here it is - The Definitive Ranking of Hard Ciders
According to Casey...
1. Wood Chuck Cider. With so many flavors to choose from Wood Chuck, made in Vermont, is definitely my go to choice when buying cider. I love the the Pear flavored (which is actually known as a perry not a cider) and the Amber which has a nice sweetness to it. My absolute favorite however is their fall blend which tastes like apple pie in a glass. yum. (I have also heard rumors about a Woodchuck Pumpkin flavor? O M G my pumpkin spice heart be still!)
2. Harpoon Cider. Also made is Vermont, Harpoon has more of a crispness than Wood Chuck does. It is light, refreshing, and has a little bit of an acidity to it. Sometimes I do not want something so sweet, and so Harpoon is the go-to guy. (Note: I have heard that they have a Honey Cider flavor which I am very interested to try).
3. Downeast Cranberry Cider. I became aware of this cider because it is on the very long drink menu at Harry's Burger Bar in Providence. It is a thick cider - if you do not slightly shake it first you will see the thick sediment in the bottom of the can as you pour. It is very sweet, but the cranberry cuts the sweetness a little. I have also tried their original blend as well but without the cranberry it is way too sweet for my liking. Downeast Cider is from Boston, MA.
4. Angry Orchard.My original fave which also has tons of flavors to choose from, from granny smith to elderflower. They have sweet options to dry options, and even a cinnamon apple flavor in the fall. Angry Orchard is my favorite cider to make into fun fall drinks - which you will have to wait until the fall to learn more about! foreshadowing.
5. My last choice was a difficult one to make. I have tried a variety of ciders, some I do not remember the name to. The one that comes to mind however is the cider by Stella Artois. It is very crisp and light and has no overabundance of sweetness to it at all. If the sweetness is whats stopping you from trying ciders than this is the one for you.
Let me know in the comments section what ciders you think I am missing out on, I am always on the lookout for new ones to try. And I would love to hear from you!