In the end, everything is canned, and hard cider is very much part of the aluminum surge. As far as other drinks are concerned, that includes the whole gamut, from seltzer and cocktails to spritzers and Pinot Gris. Sure, many ciders are still bottled in glass and contain complexities that even the most discerning wine enthusiast would enjoy. More and more, however, are being presented in crushable can form, much to the benefit of both the environment and the nomadic imbiber who likes to pack along some fermented apple juice.
They said there’s little more that’s American than apple pie. Well, amid this golden age of drinks culture, one could argue that the same could be said of cider. From Washington to New York, there are numerous orchards manufacturing scores of varieties that filter into delicious batches of approved canned cider. And while there’s a myriad of great homegrown cider, there are some outstanding canned takes coming in as well, from cider-crazed countries like Canada, Spain, and France.
Here are some of the best canned cider options you can sip on this year.
Set in the heart of the Willamette Valley in Corvallis, Oregon 2 Towns is among the state’s top cider houses. This berry-infused cider is particularly Oregonian, made with resident Marionberries (invented down the street at Oregon State University). It’s a dazzling lavender hue and offers brambly notes along with a nice punch of fresh apple.
Looking for a pear cider? A Spanish cider made in the tradition of Asturias in the northwest of the country, this cider is one of the most balanced and refreshing out there. Made of pear, it’s dry, with crisp fruit notes, lovely effervescence, and a kiss of funk. Oh, and the Pretty Dry Perry can is a model citizen from a design standpoint.
This cider from New York is Basque-inspired, showing glowing brightness and electric green apple notes. Wild fermented and aged on the lees, it shows a touch of earthiness and boasts nice structure. It’s available in can and bottle form.
Based in Sebastapol, Golden State Cider is doing good work in the canned sector. The brut is made with Champagne yeast and unfiltered, offering lovely texture and focused flavors. It’s the Muscadet of cider, perfect with oysters. For something a little different, check out the label’s tasty Local Harvest Series.
Headquartered in the Columbia River Gorge, Son of Man is also aboard the Spanish-style cider train. The Sagardo shows a touch of herbs along with citrus, melon, and a bit of brine. It’s so dry, drinkable, and food-friendly, you’ll be cracking cans all afternoon and evening. The tasty batch just adopted a canned version of its flagship offering.
This Washington outfit is still in the process of launching, but it is the byproduct of a seasoned team working with some of the best apples on the west coast. While dry ciders tend to show the most character, this semi-sweet take finds a glorious balance between fruit and sugar. Made of a handful of varieties, the cider is unctuous and built around prominent stone fruit flavors.
Lonetree is based in Vancouver, B.C., and makes cider from apples grown all over the province, including the Okanagan Valley. The outfit’s Authentic Dry Apple Cider is incredibly inviting and pleasant on the palate. Fans of lagers and pilsners will transition seamlessly to the approachability of this well-made cider.
Set in Michigan, Blake’s makes a wide variety of canned cider options. The Beard Bender is barrel-aged and quite session-like in its lightness. Despite the smoothness that comes from time on oak, there’s still a tasty smack of tartness. As the outfit suggests, enjoy it on its own or with a bit of bourbon.
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