Made from crisp and juicy apples, cider is a beloved drink that has fans literally all over the world and, in some places, it has even developed a bit of a cult following. From the freshly pressed non-alcoholic variety to the hand crafted hard ciders that offer a huge array of flavors, World Cider Day is meant to appreciate them all.
Not to be confused with Apple Cider Day which is celebrated in November, this one is in honor of World Cider Day where the enjoyment of all types of cider, even hard ciders, is celebrated all over the globe!
History of World Cider Day
Although hard cider has become a popular drink again in recent decades, its origins actually go much further back, to the early European colonial settlers. For a couple of centuries it was the drink of choice in the eastern United States where apples were grown prolifically.
Sadly, the popularity of cider died down a bit in the 1800s, and then prohibition efforts in the early 20th century brought production to a halt. But, in the late 1970s, when craft brewing started making a reappearance, cider followed along with the flow and has been growing in popularity ever since.
Woodchuck cider started its company in 1991 and has been faithfully brewing ciders that people love ever since. Then, in 2012, when Boston Beer Company (maker of Samuel Adams beer) turned their attention toward their Angry Orchard Cider arm of the company, they quickly rose to the top of popularity
World Cider Day is the culmination of all of this and more, made to enjoy and appreciate the long and lovely history of turning apples into a delicious and delightful beverage that can be enjoyed all year round.
World Cider Day Timeline
Julius Caesar experiences cider
During Roman times, the Celtic Britons were found fermenting the cider they made from local crabapples.
Cider becomes popular
After its introduction to England, cider is so popular that it can be used to barter or even pay tithes and rents.
Apple trees are planted in America
Just nine years after the Plymouth landing, colonists plant apple trees in Massachusetts which can eventually be used for making cider.
Prohibition starts in the US
Causing a difficult hit for the alcohol industry, hard cider and other alcoholic beverages are made illegal in the United States for 13 years.
Angry Orchard Cider company is founded
Owned by Boston Beer Company, this cider will quickly grow to become the most popular in the United States.
How to Celebrate World Cider Day
World Cider Day can be observed in all sorts of fun and exciting ways on your own or with the family. Try out some of these ideas for getting started with celebrating this day:
Try a New Kind of Cider
World Cider Day is the perfect time to grab a friend or coworker and go out to a bar or pub and try out a new label or flavor of hard cider. Or, for those who have family members of a younger age, grab a gallon of apple cider from a grocery store or local apple farm and enjoy drinking it with everyone.
Some hard cider makers are getting super creative with the flavors created in the recipes. Unexpected ingredients appear together, such as blackberry and lavender mixed with local lemonade; ginger mixed with blood orange and lemon; or apple and starfruit. Other flavors might seem normal in food recipes but become unique when made into cider. These can include pecan pie, peanut butter and jelly, and even horchata (the Latin American nut milk drink).
Some people might think that apples are a little plain. But, certainly with all of these types and varieties on offer, there’s no way that anyone could get bored. Whatever the options are locally, try out something unique and interesting in honor of World Cider Day.
Learn About Brands of Hard Cider
Those who want to celebrate World Cider Day in style might want to improve their vocabulary and get familiar with some of the most popular brands of hard cider that are available in the United States. It might even be fun to gather some friends and hold a blind taste test to see which brands are the winners.
Here’s how the American brands of hard cider seem to hold up in popularity:
Since its start in 2012, this company has become the most popular and well-known cider brand in the country. Choose from classic Crisp Apple, Tropical with flavors of pineapple, Rose with a floral flavor, Green Apple, Pear, Strawberry, Peach Mango, and Unfiltered.
One of the first American companies to bring hard cider back, Woodchuck has been around since 1991. Their offerings include Amber, Pear, Granny Smith, Blueberry, Mimosa, Sangria, and some bubbly versions like Pear and Rose.
Located in Michigan, which is famous for its apples, this cider company prides itself on making ciders even for people who don’t like cider! In addition to the basic flavors, they have unique versions with cinnamon and maple, fresh cucumber, chai spices and chipotle raspberry. Farmhaus Cider also has seasonal offerings.
Visit an Apple Orchard
A great way to enjoy World Cider Day is to visit an apple orchard. While there, pick a bushel of apples to take home and then stop by the orchard store where they are sure to be offering a variety of freshly made apple cider options that will be delicious when enjoyed either hot or cold.
Some apple orchards provide the public with tours to see exactly how they press the cider from the apples and turn it into a delicious drink. Many apple orchards also have fun activities, games and events for families, so be sure to check out what’s on locally and join in on all of the fun that is steeped in apple-y goodness.
Go to a Cider Brewing Facility
Interested in the way that hard cider is made? This would be the perfect time to enjoy a visit to a local brewing facility for hard ciders. Some cider facilities offer public tours, and others even hold tasting events and taproom opportunities that are similar to those held in wine country.
Try out a brewing facility in apple country like Farmhaus Cider near Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, where it’s even possible to visit their restaurant for dinner, hold a private event, or reserve a private igloo in the winter time!
Even better, take a tour of several cider makers, such as one that can be found in the Columbia River Gorge in Washington, USA. Tour six different cider makers who have cideries, taprooms, cafes, and more all on the lineup.
World Cider Day FAQs
Does cider have alcohol?
Some versions of fermented cider do have alcohol content from 3%-8%. In the United States, this is usually referred to as “hard cider”, in other places it might be called “apple wine”.
When did cider become popular?
In 1066, after the Norman conquest of England, new types of apples are introduced and cider becomes a popular drink, second to ale.
How much sugar is in apple cider?
A typical cup of non-alcoholic apple cider contains around 24g of sugar, which is approximately 8% of the daily intake for an adult.
How is cider different from apple juice?
Apple juice and apple cider both go through the same process originally, but apple juice is then filtered to remove the sediment and pulp, leaving it clear instead of cloudy.
Does cider go bad?
Hard cider is meant to have a shelf life of two years. Fresh apple cider, found in the produce section should have a sell by date, and it only lasts for about 7-10 days in the refrigerator after opening the jug.