Cider and the Holidays

Portland CiderGrowing up I always associated the holidays with many things apple. We’d make apple pie, or hot spiced apple juice, apple crisp, or if we were lucky we’d find some fresh pressed apple juice. I think the association with apples and the holidays goes all the way back to the early settlers, which would make sense. While I still eat more apples during the holidays than I suppose I do during other times of the year, my introduction to hard cider has changed my relationship with the apple during the holidays. Today I look to the fall harvest as an opportunity to make the year’s best cider, cider from apples that have just been picked, as opposed to the apples that have been stored through the winter. There is something special about those fall apples, they impart additional flavors that the same apples seem to lose over time as their stored. That’s not to say that the stored apples won’t produce great cider, it’s just the fresh picked fall apples have something extra. So cheers to the holiday season, and the fall apples!