New location this year right out in front of MOHAI was the Cider Summit, a collection of over 180 ciders, primarily from the PNW.
Even on an overcast day in Seattle, this event was buzzing with cider lovers hoping to discover, rediscover, or be introduced to a beverage that has been prominent in our nations history and before.
Even my guest, local coffee roaster, Philip Meech, who hasn’t typically been a fan of cider, was surprised at what a great event and the wide variety of delicious ciders represented.
Highlights included the following:
Manchester – an English-style cider making company from Chelan who wowed us with their clean and just slightly sweet AppleSox Red and 42. They guys are doing it right.
One Tree – from my hometown, Spokane, One Tree did a lemon-basil infused apple cider that was super unique, delicious, and made us want to go back.
Samuel Smith – hate to say it but these guys are FROM England and are showcasing cider (I had the Perry – pear-based) the way our English ancestors meant it to be, dry, just a touch sweet, and full of “fruit,” meaning, not crowded out with other bougie flavors.
J. Seeds Cider Whiskey – I am a huge fan of Apple Whiskies, including Calvados and AppleJack. One of my favorite cocktails includes AppleJack, a little simple syrup, bitters, and topped with hard cider and J Seeds apple whiskey will make me very happy. Even grabbed some to go.
Tieton Cider Works – made with apples just outside of Yakima and with no added sugar (which my wife likes), this cider tastes like you think cider should, straightforward apple and with their added flavors of apricot, or peach aged in bourbon barrels, it is a lovely cider to drink on an overcast fall day.
The Cider Summit is essentially a “road show” with stops in Portland, Chicago and San Francisco as well.
Washington state (and some in Oregon) has always been proud to feature some of the best apples in the world. We owe it to the farmers of Eastern Washington putting in the hard work. Before there was grape vineyards everywhere in Washington, there were apples. We are blessed to showcase one of our local crops and ferment it to deliciousness.