Prime apple picking season starts in September, but it’s also the best time to experience apples in a different form – hard cider. The Apple Hill Growers have been producing hard cider for generations and now many farms are offering unique brews that showcase the traditions of the farming families in the community.
North Canyon Cider Co.
The Barsotti Family Juice Company has been making freshly pressed apple cider for nearly 40 years at their family-owned, solar-powered cider mill. They are currently producing four varieties: Original Dry, American Sweet, Ginger Pineapple and Cold Brewed with Hops. Visitors
can enjoy them all at the Cider House weekends starting September 14.
The Delfino family’s Henrietta Stich hard cider is a tribute to Joan Delfino’s mother, Henrietta Stich. Henrietta raised her three children (Joan being the middle child) to love life, family, and farming. Now, third generation Delfinos are carrying on those same traditions at Delfino Farms. Their Vintage Cider is a blend of Black and Granny Smith apples and the brand-new Blackberry version was released this summer. The ciders pair perfectly with Joan Delfino’s famous Walkin’ Pie, available at the farm Friday- Monday.
Rainbow Orchards might be best known for their mouth-watering apple cider donuts, but their fresh-pressed apple cider is a great reason to stick around the ranch a little longer. Visitors can enjoy the ciders along with delicious baked goods showcasing the area’s best produce.
High Hill Ranch
This Apple Hill favorite is known for its apple pies and donuts, but the hard apple cider is worth stopping for on its own! The High Hand cider is crisp and tart with flavors of green apple. High Hill also produces several varieties of apple wine and beer as well as cider champagne.
Wofford Acres Vineyards
Wofford Acres Vineyards may be best known for its spectacular view of the American River Canyon, but the South Fork Apple Cider is not to be missed. As the family says, “come for the wine and stay for the view!” The same holds true for this brew made from Arkansas Black, Fuji, Golden Delicious, Granny Smith and Pippin apples.
Smokey Ridge Ranch and Winery
The laid back barn and farmstand at Smokey Ridge Ranch is the ideal place to soak in the mountain air and enjoy hard apple cider from apples grown on the farm on weekends from now through December. Smokey Ridge also produces several traditional wine varietals including foothill favorites like Syrah, Sangiovese and Grenache.