A Day at the Orchard: Exploring New Apples

Exploring New Apple Varieties

I love apples but since I love hard cider, that probably doesn’t surprise many people. However, two of my favorite things in life are finding new hard ciders and new apples that I have never tried. For 2020, I have been exploring some new orchards and that means new apples and ultimately, it will mean … Continue reading A Day at the Orchard: Exploring New Apples

Earligold: Sauce, Butter, and Cider

Earligold: Sauce, Butter, Juice

How many apples fit in a 5 gallon (19L) bucket? About 20 pounds (9kg). What about my totes? About 45 pounds (20.5kg) if you don’t heap them too high. I’ve filled them so many times, I don’t even really need to weigh them anymore. I can just tell by looking at them. We picked two … Continue reading Earligold: Sauce, Butter, and Cider

A Day at the Orchard: First Fruits

A Day at the Orchard: First Fruits

It might have been a touch early but I was itching to get to the orchard and pick some apples. Here in Arizona, we tend to get our first apples in late July. These are usually a small variety called Earligold. They are a green apple and turns gold as it ripens. The problem is … Continue reading A Day at the Orchard: First Fruits

Grafting: Lessons Learned

Grafting Lessons

Whether you are making your first hard cider or grafting your first scion to a rootstock, everyone who has done it hundreds or even thousands of times had their first attempt at some point. Maybe that attempt resulted in a great outcome but my guess is that nobody, success or failure, is using the same … Continue reading Grafting: Lessons Learned

Hard Cider: Think Local

Local Hard Cider

In the US, there is a small but growing trend called Farm-to-Table. It could also be called eat local or know your farmer. Personally, it speaks to me, and the way it speaks the loudest is through the hard cider that I make. My wife and I love to cook and try new foods and … Continue reading Hard Cider: Think Local

How old is that apple tree?

Apple Tree Age

It seems like a simple question: How old is your apple tree? Maybe, you planted the tree a couple years ago. Maybe, your dad planted it when you were a kid. Maybe you wouldn’t know without cutting down the tree and counting the rings. Please don’t do that! I’m just speaking hypothetically. But, my question … Continue reading How old is that apple tree?

The Vintage of Hard Cider

The Vintage of Cider

Do hard ciders have vintages? Regardless of whether you are legally allowed to define a vintage, like wine, on a bottle of hard cider, my question is really about what impact the “vintage” or year the apple was grown has on a hard cider. If you are using juice from the store, vintage becomes irrelevant … Continue reading The Vintage of Hard Cider