Angry Orchard Debuts Cider Made From New York Apples

Walden Hollow hard cider (Photo credit: Boston Beer Co.)
Walden Hollow hard cider (Photo credit: Boston Beer Company)

Apples are a major crop in New York State. So, when the Boston Beer Company, parent company of Angry Orchard, opened the Angry Orchard Innovation Cider House on a 100-year-old apple orchard in Walden, NY, this relationship between the Empire State and apples was only solidified.

The cidery recently announced the release of its first year-round specialty hard cider, called Walden Hollow. The cider is made exclusively with apple varieties from New York State. These include ‘Golden Russett,’ ‘Northern Spy,’ ‘Newton Pippin,’ ‘McIntosh,’ ‘Braeburn,’ and ‘Rome.’

“This cider is all about New York State fruit and a lot of it is dependent on what is available,” says Ryan Burk, head cidermaker for Angry Orchard. “Our location in Walden is where we’re developing all our ciders. It gives us an opportunity to participate in the growing economy,” he says.

The cider will be released in the spring, and will vary slightly based on New York’s harvest the previous year. Burk says this is a great opportunity to show off New York apples. Wild fermentation techniques were used to create an earthy farmhouse cider flavor. Heirloom apples used bring a tartness to the medium-sweet cider.

Walden Hollow is one release in the Angry Orchard Cider House collection. Others in the collection include The Muse, which is inspired by slightly sweet demi-sec champagne and sparkling wine; Strawman, an American spin on a French farmhouse cider; and Iceman, which similar to ice ciders of Quebec. The first three ciders in this collection use traditional cider making apples from Italy and France and are aged on oak.

“The project will focus on those varieties proven to be great apples in New York State,” he says. “It was a really fun project. I’m really excited to be using New York fruit; we’re really happy with the way [Walden Hollow] turned out. It’s quite different than most cider drinkers have had. In our portfolio, it’s the driest cider we’ve made.”

As far as apple varieties are concerned, Burk says there are some varieties that have fallen out of favor with the fresh market, and are being pushed out. Although, he hopes growers might recognize the potential for some of these apples within the hard cider industry. These varieties, Burk says, lend special characteristics to ciders.

“Older varieties with interesting character are what I’m interested in,” he says. “As the cider industry grows, these apples are only going to continue to increase in demand. It is my hope these varieties are going to stay around.”

Burk says as growers consider turning over orchards to more popular fresh market varieties, they could think about having conversations with cidermakers about the blocks they have in production, before pushing them out.

“If they have varieties they’re thinking of taking out, I bet my life on it a cidermakers would want that fruit,” he says.
‘Newton Pippin,’ for example, is a single-varietal cider Angry Orchard developed. Burk says that’s a testament to the type of fruit used – and it’s something he says he couldn’t do with a ‘Red Delicious.’

“We’re really telling that story of that apple,” he says. “It is my hope is we can return some of these older varieties return to their original glory.”

The Angry Orchard Cider House has been open for almost a year now, and Burk says the reception has been great.

“Every weekend we’re seeing more people than the weekend before. People are asking to try new things,” he says.

Being in an orchard setting helps educate the staff and visitors on apple varieties, and “continues to tell the story of apples first and how important they are in [cider].”

Topics:

Leave a Reply

Apples & Pears Stories
Apples & Pears
August 26, 2017
‘EverCrisp’ Apple gets PLU Approval
Midwest Apple Improvement Association prepares for large harvest and larger distribution reach for first variety released. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 22, 2017
U.S. Apple Association Hosts Annual Apple Outlook Conference in Chicago
American Fruit Grower® and Western Fruit Grower® magazine’s 2017 Apple Grower of the Year will be officially presented on Thursday, Aug. 24, during the first day of the conference. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 20, 2017
APHIS Seeks Comments on Risk Removal for Dormant Apple Cuttings
Dormant live cuttings from countries in the European Union must currently go through pest risk assessment. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 15, 2017
Wet Weather Breeds Phytophthora in Young Apple Plantings
Crown rot, root rot flourishing in very wet growing season. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 9, 2017
2017 Washington Apple Crop Down Slightly
Forecasted harvest predicted to be 131 million boxes, down 1.2% from 2016. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 5, 2017
Penn State University Develops Bitter Pit Prediction Model
Research team unlocks relationship between bitter pit, minerals, and shoot lengths. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 1, 2017
New York Growers’ Input Needed on Apple Tree Decline
Project has begun to identify rapid collapse and chronic decline being found in young Eastern apple orchards. Read More
Apples & Pears
July 25, 2017
Tips to Transition to an Apple Fruiting Wall System
Follow these suggestions to make the move from a 3-D spindle-shaped canopy to a 2-D system using mechanical pruning. Read More
Apples & Pears
June 30, 2017
Tackling the Challenges of Organic Apple Production Head-on
Researchers at Michigan State University test organic controls for fire blight. Read More
Apples & Pears
June 29, 2017
Integrating Control Methods to Tackle Fire Blight
Fire blight is a damaging disease, no matter the location. Most production areas of the Pacific Northwest and California experience Read More
Apples & Pears
June 28, 2017
Apple Tree Insurance Program Being Developed
U.S. Apple Association working with AgriLogic Consulting, LLC and USDA Risk Management Agency to offer new risk management option which takes into effect weather damage and fire blight loses. Read More
Apples & Pears
June 26, 2017
Cosmic Changes Coming in Apple Production [Opinion]
‘Cosmic Crisp’ is an apt moniker for Washington’s new apple, because the changes coming to the industry are immense Read More
Apples & Pears
June 23, 2017
Take Advantage of Technology to Help Manage Diseases, Pest Pressure
Expert farm advisers provide several options for apple orchard management decisions. Read More
Apples & Pears
June 19, 2017
Bee-ware: New Resources Released for National Pollinator Week
New videos, webinars available during week-long observance. Read More
The Latest
Apples & Pears
September 22, 2017
Media Reflects Modern Society [Opinion]
Little about fruit growing — or any agriculture — appears because too few of us are willing to illuminate the media. Read More
Apples & Pears
September 16, 2017
Researcher Finds Bacteria Can Stop Blue …
The natural bacterium found in soil can survive in cold storage; this promising biocontrol offers an alternative to chemical treatments. Read More
Apples & Pears
September 5, 2017
Pears Finding Home in Fermentation
Perry, a fermented beverage similar to hard apple cider, is gaining popularity in the U.S., and growers are learning about the production process from square one. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 26, 2017
‘EverCrisp’ Apple gets PLU Approval
Midwest Apple Improvement Association prepares for large harvest and larger distribution reach for first variety released. Read More
Apple Grower of the Year
August 22, 2017
U.S. Apple Association Hosts Annual Appl…
American Fruit Grower® and Western Fruit Grower® magazine’s 2017 Apple Grower of the Year will be officially presented on Thursday, Aug. 24, during the first day of the conference. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 20, 2017
APHIS Seeks Comments on Risk Removal for…
Dormant live cuttings from countries in the European Union must currently go through pest risk assessment. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 15, 2017
Wet Weather Breeds Phytophthora in Young…
Crown rot, root rot flourishing in very wet growing season. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 9, 2017
2017 Washington Apple Crop Down Slightly
Forecasted harvest predicted to be 131 million boxes, down 1.2% from 2016. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 5, 2017
Penn State University Develops Bitter Pi…
Research team unlocks relationship between bitter pit, minerals, and shoot lengths. Read More
Apples & Pears
August 1, 2017
New York Growers’ Input Needed on Apple …
Project has begun to identify rapid collapse and chronic decline being found in young Eastern apple orchards. Read More
Apples & Pears
July 25, 2017
Tips to Transition to an Apple Fruiting …
Follow these suggestions to make the move from a 3-D spindle-shaped canopy to a 2-D system using mechanical pruning. Read More
Apples & Pears
July 6, 2017
International Fruit Tree Association See…
Deadline for proposals is July 31. Read More
Apples & Pears
June 30, 2017
Tackling the Challenges of Organic Apple…
Researchers at Michigan State University test organic controls for fire blight. Read More
Apples & Pears
June 29, 2017
Integrating Control Methods to Tackle Fi…
Fire blight is a damaging disease, no matter the location. Most production areas of the Pacific Northwest and California experience Read More
Apples & Pears
June 28, 2017
Apple Tree Insurance Program Being Devel…
U.S. Apple Association working with AgriLogic Consulting, LLC and USDA Risk Management Agency to offer new risk management option which takes into effect weather damage and fire blight loses. Read More
Apples & Pears
June 26, 2017
Cosmic Changes Coming in Apple Productio…
‘Cosmic Crisp’ is an apt moniker for Washington’s new apple, because the changes coming to the industry are immense Read More
Apples & Pears
June 23, 2017
Take Advantage of Technology to Help Man…
Expert farm advisers provide several options for apple orchard management decisions. Read More
Apples & Pears
June 19, 2017
Bee-ware: New Resources Released for Nat…
New videos, webinars available during week-long observance. Read More