Do Ciders Belong in the Beer World?

Discussion in 'Other Beverages' started by BrewVenture2, Aug 28, 2017.

  1. BrewVenture2

    BrewVenture2 Initiate (0) Aug 25, 2017 Massachusetts

    Just a thought, but are ciders even welcome here?

    I've been on a little cider kick lately and have tried to log a few here, but many cider brewers are not listed :-(

    So, what are your thoughts on ciders? and, Do they belong in the beer world?

    Cheers!
     
  2. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,282) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

  3. BrewVenture2

    BrewVenture2 Initiate (0) Aug 25, 2017 Massachusetts

    Well, I guess that about sums it up.
     
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  4. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,282) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    Welcome to the site though. If you don't see specific beers listed here you can always add them. Cheers.
     
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  5. Ranbot

    Ranbot Champion (857) Nov 27, 2006 Pennsylvania
    Society

    I agree with you and the article that cider is not beer, but since 2009 when that article was written there have been changes in ciders that are overlapping more and more with craft beer. I've noticed ciders fermented with traditional beer yeasts, dry-hopped ciders, sour/wild-fermented ciders, and aging in barrels (bourbon, rum, oak, etc.), and while these things don't make cider into beer the connections can be appreciated by craft beer drinkers. Many cideries are treading the same paths as craft brewers, and there are some brewers trying their hand at ciders (e.g. Boston Beer Co./Angry Orchard).

    EDIT: All that said, when curiosity for a cider gets to me and I try it, I always think to myself, that was OK, but I would have preferred a beer. :grin:
     
    #5 Ranbot, Aug 28, 2017
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2017
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  6. Todd

    Todd Founder (5,565) Aug 23, 1996 California
    Staff Moderator Fest Crew

    Do ciders belong in the beer world? Depends on who you ask. Technically cider isn't beer, but there's a lot of crossover (both ways) with consumers, brewers, styles, etc.

    As for BA, we once allowed cider and mead, but got rid of them.

    In recent years we've invited cider, mead, sake, kombucha, and brewers of other fermentables at our Microbrew Invitational. They were very well-received. We even brewed a kombucha/beer hybrid with Sam at Dogfish Head for one of our Extreme Beer Fests. Why? It's fun to switch things up, and learn about something new.

    All of that said, we currently don't allow cider listings.
     
  7. BrewVenture2

    BrewVenture2 Initiate (0) Aug 25, 2017 Massachusetts

    Speaking to that, the cider I'm having at the moment IS fermented with Belgian yeast. It's really interesting to see all the overlaps between the two, but I get the feeling that many beer people are against cider, yet, as you say, they're kind of going down parallel paths. There are even Hopped Ciders out there now, like the IPAs of the cider world. It's cool to see the trends almost play off of each other.
     
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  8. JFresh21

    JFresh21 Disciple (317) Mar 6, 2012 Illinois
    Trader

    No ciders allowed! This is a masculine beer community. We like beers that taste like Frappuccino's, vanilla milkshakes and orange juice... wait a minute...
     
  9. zid

    zid Meyvn (1,282) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    I agree with you too, but I wasn't stating any personal thoughts in my post... just answering the first question in the OP.
     
  10. Ranbot

    Ranbot Champion (857) Nov 27, 2006 Pennsylvania
    Society

    I know. I was just using your quote to launch a wider discussion. @Jason was very clear on cider as far as this site's ratings go, which I agree 100% with (not that I have any say in those matters). But it seems like there is some room in the site's rules to discuss the connections between cider and craft beer, which is a topic I don't remember being discussed here, at least not recently, unless I missed something.
     
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  11. HorseheadsHophead

    HorseheadsHophead Poo-Bah (1,689) Sep 15, 2014 New York

    10/10 comment. :joy:
     
  12. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,611) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    9.5

    Coulda used Fuzzy Navel instead of orange juice :stuck_out_tongue::wink:.
     
  13. Keene

    Keene Editorial Director (764) Sep 11, 2009 Washington
    Staff

    To your point, here's a related article we ran in the November 2014 issue of our magazine: https://www.beeradvocate.com/articl...-informing-todays-generation-of-cider-makers/
     
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  14. Ten_SeventySix_Brewhouse

    Ten_SeventySix_Brewhouse Initiate (136) Jul 20, 2016 Indiana

    I came here to say exactly this, albeit in a less funny way.

    If dessert stouts (brewed with coffee, fruits, candy, chocolate, spices, etc.) and milkshake IPAs (with lactose, fruit, flour, etc.) are beers, why not a cider? I know the technical definition involves barley, but I'm sure the German purists are already rolling in their graves anyway (the ones that have already died, that is).
     
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  15. marquis

    marquis Crusader (769) Nov 20, 2005 United Kingdom (England)

    It must be mentioned that CAMRA has taken cider and perry under its wing.
    All beer festivals have a cider/perry component and is immensely popular.
    As with beer,the support is limited to live unpasteurised versions.A lot of so called ciders are mabe from reconstituted apple pulp rather than being a "craft" (how I hate that word !) product.
     
  16. meefmoff

    meefmoff Zealot (589) Jul 6, 2014 Massachusetts
    Society Trader

    Your original question seems well answered by now, but in case you like mead as well as cider, there is a mead/beer hybrid that is allowed on the site called "Braggot". I've yet to have one myself (they seem fairly rare), but I have been intrigued to try one for a while now.

    Cheers and welcome.
     
  17. Ten_SeventySix_Brewhouse

    Ten_SeventySix_Brewhouse Initiate (136) Jul 20, 2016 Indiana

    I once had a commercially produced Braggot IPA. It was quite good, if I remember correctly despite the ~13% ABV. :grin: More like beer than mead, in that case.
     
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  18. BrewVenture2

    BrewVenture2 Initiate (0) Aug 25, 2017 Massachusetts

    Mead is great! I will be on the look out for that. Thanks, cheers!
     
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  19. tmalt

    tmalt Initiate (77) Dec 17, 2015 Florida

    Bnektar is a popular mead, cider and braggot producer that originally started by brewing beer.
     
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  20. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,436) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    The beer world has some breweries that have cider production. Short's does, and there are many small breweries that have "wine" licenses to make cider in MI. Cider is wine since it is made from fruit.

    The American Homebrewers Association has categories for cider and Mead in addition to all of the beer categories. The BJCP has guidelines for cider and Mead. The test has been rolled out for Mead, and a cider test is under development.

    I mostly make beer at home, but serval batches of cider and one or two meads are made a year.
     
  21. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,436) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

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  22. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,611) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    Speaking of hopped ciders, we have one from up in the Hudson Valley that seems to be pretty popular- Bad Seed- and it has the beneft of coming in 12oz. can 4-packs. It's quite nice, actually, light and not too sweet, with a solid apple presence, but there's also those nice spicy/floral overtones from the hops. It's been a fairly regular item in my fridge since the spring.
     
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  23. tmalt

    tmalt Initiate (77) Dec 17, 2015 Florida

  24. Scott17Taylor

    Scott17Taylor Meyvn (1,358) Oct 28, 2013 Iowa
    Trader

    I really like cider, but it's not really a part of the beer world and I'm. It sure it should be. I put it in the wine and mead category, I enjoy them, but it's not really anything I'm passionate about.
     
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  25. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,436) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    I know Brad was a homebrewer that did well with his meads, first met him at a Homebrew club meeting, where he brought his Mead. Opened the meadery in 2008, got a brewing license in 2015.
    http://www.bnektar.com/our-story/
     
  26. lordofthemark

    lordofthemark Aspirant (225) Jan 28, 2015 Virginia

    If you have an urge to rate ciders, you may do so at ratebeer.
     
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  27. donspublic

    donspublic Poo-Bah (1,690) Aug 4, 2014 Texas
    Society Trader

    Welcome to the site, and now that you threw that out there, can you tell me which cider that is? Is it from a small producer or widely distributed?
     
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  28. Ranbot

    Ranbot Champion (857) Nov 27, 2006 Pennsylvania
    Society

    Untappd includes cider and mead ratings as well, but if you want in-depth reviews with the ratings then Untappd falls far short.
     
  29. BrewVenture2

    BrewVenture2 Initiate (0) Aug 25, 2017 Massachusetts

    Hey there! It was from Prospect Ciderworks in Boston, MA.They have some great ciders there and many are using beer yeast.
     
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  30. bubseymour

    bubseymour Poo-Bah (2,415) Oct 30, 2010 Maryland
    Trader

    Millstone Ciders in Monkton, MD are making some amazing ciders. If you like really funky barrel aged sour beers, these ciders are very similar. I've tried many ciders from local cider mills in MD, VA, Vermont etc and nothing really compares to what Millstone is doing. I'm sure there are others doing this BA sour cider thing as well, I just haven't found them yet.

    http://www.millstonecellars.com/libations
     
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  31. bbtkd

    bbtkd Poo-Bah (2,428) Sep 20, 2015 South Dakota
    Society Trader

    If ciders were allowed here, then we'd have wine coolers next. No thanks, save those for Cider Advocate and Whine Cooler Advocate...
     
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  32. KingCobra686

    KingCobra686 Initiate (129) Aug 13, 2014 Connecticut
    Trader

    Its useful to have a cutoff at some point. If cider counts as beer, why cant mead count as beer too? If cider counts as beer, why cant wine or wine coolers or malt beverages or all other sorts of fermented drinks count too?

    There are certainly plenty of gray areas (fruit beers, dessert stouts) but the divide between your average beer and average cider is pretty distinct.
     
  33. hopfenunmaltz

    hopfenunmaltz Meyvn (1,436) Jun 8, 2005 Michigan

    There are legal definitions that say cider and Mead are wines. Look up the Federal and your state's license regulations.
     
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  34. lordofthemark

    lordofthemark Aspirant (225) Jan 28, 2015 Virginia


    By the same token, in some states there are regulations saying high ABV beers do not count as beers. In many ways ciders fit the traditional culture of beer, in terms of marketing, consumption patterns, etc, better than do those high ABV beers, which are marketed and consumed more like wines (and sakes, which are technically beers IIUC because fermented from grain) . I am not saying BA should change, but really where we draw the lines is fairly arbitrary. The site I mentioned above allows sakes, ciders AND meads, but not FMBs. The only reason to exclude FMBs is snobbishness towards the entire category. But I have no particular problem with that. Absolute consistency is not required, meeting the needs of users is.
     
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  35. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,611) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    The first time I had a cider was in a pub in London, where it seems that they and ales go hand in hand. And the first ciders to become popular here in the US were actually marketed as 'pub ciders'. Definitely part of the same tradition afaic.
     
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  36. drtth

    drtth Poo-Bah (3,851) Nov 25, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Yes, Cider is deeply embedded in UK pub culture, etc. I've seen sources that claim cider apples were being grown in some parts of the UK since the time of the Romans. While there are some areas where cider is more deeply intertwined in the local culture than others, virtually every pub (a wee bit more the 1 or 2 :wink:) I've ever been in offered cider as well as beer, especially those in small towns or out in the countryside.
     
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  37. Ten_SeventySix_Brewhouse

    Ten_SeventySix_Brewhouse Initiate (136) Jul 20, 2016 Indiana

    My thoughts exactly. I'm more likely to grab a cider than a RIS or barleywine (it even has wine in the name!) because of my drinking habits and preferences, and I consider myself almost exclusively a beer drinker

    Technical, legal, and BA definitions aside, I believe ciders fall into the beer world like tomatoes fall into the vegetable category.
     
  38. Ten_SeventySix_Brewhouse

    Ten_SeventySix_Brewhouse Initiate (136) Jul 20, 2016 Indiana

    But some might argue that a milkshake ipa is closer to a fruity cocktail than it is to a classic pilsner. I'm not sure the divide between cider and beer is wider than the divide between a RIS and a Helles lager.

    I agree that drawing the line somewhere is helpful, and I am by no means passionately arguing for BA to include ciders in its catalog. I think this does make for an interesting discussion, though.
     
  39. raynmoon

    raynmoon Crusader (788) Aug 13, 2011 Colorado
    Trader

    Strictly forbidden.
     
  40. machalel

    machalel Initiate (0) Jan 19, 2012 Australia

    I'd be happy if discussion of ciders etc was allowed, just not included in the ratings / catalogue :slight_smile:

    Although I can see how those against the inclusion would see that as the start of a slippery slope.