Oregon Cider Week Preview
Take vacation time, call in sick, make any excuse to get to Oregon between June 15th and 25th to experience Oregon Cider Week! I guarantee there will be something for you and anyone you choose to bring with you. Oregon Cider Week is a uniquely united front. A perfectly paired collaboration between cidermakers, cider houses, cider people and the amazing city of Portland! From cider pairings, cidery tours, tap takeovers, cider & yoga (ummm, yes please!), bike rides, local collaborations, special releases, and the 7th annual Cider Summit Portland featuring over 150 ciders & cider cocktails including regional favorites and international classics, there will be endless possibilities! And that’s not even half of it.
I was fortunate enough to get a preview of what is in store for ciderseekers, along with a few other cider lovers in the media, and I promise this upcoming event will not disappoint anyone.
During this fun cider-filled “sneak peek” day, we were whisked away on a Brewvana tour bus allowing us exclusive access to 12 different Oregon cideries. Each cidery had a knowledgeable and personable representative present at one of the four locations along our route which consisted of Sauvie Island Apple Orchard, McMenamins 23rd Ave Bottle Shop, Cider Bite in the Pearl District, and Portland Cider House on Hawthorne. Cideries represented were as follows: Portland Cider, Swift Cider, 1859 Cider, Elk Horn, New West, Alter Ego, Eden Valley Orchards, Bauman Cider, 12 Bridge, ^5 Cider and 2 Towns Ciderhouse.
While being inundated with information and great cider at each destination, we were given a glimpse as to what will be showcased during Oregon Cider Week, while the representatives described each unique event they will be headlining. All the ciders I sampled have their own distinct and exceptional flavor, color, and background story. Cidermakers are really trying to go “bolder and bigger” than ever this year, so if your palate is ready to move from the traditional apple cider into some fun & new flavors, let this week guide you home.
Fruit ciders (blends other than apples) are the prom queen of cider right now and some, but not all cideries, are tossing their cider in the election for the hopes of the elusive crown. New West Cider has a pomegranate ginger that is so fresh, crisp, and clean. 12 Bridge, a brand new Oregon cidery, has a cranberry pomegranate that was fun and original. It really came through with the cranberry flavor. Baumen’s has an amazing Orange Blossom that just might replace that mimosa that you have been drinking during your brunch. It is LEGIT… so good! Eden Valley Orchard has an amazing Perry that stays true to the flavor of the pear, 100% pear. 2 Towns came through, per usual, with their latest release called Prickle Me Pink cider, a prickly pear cider with hints of a watermelon & apple balance the product to perfection. I would like to mention the color of this cider is Crayola-inspired and should be their next shade of magenta.
Alter Ego’s Guardian Angel wrapped me in its blueberry wings and swept me away into the heavens of cider. Too much? Haha, It was just so good! I am telling you all of these ciders are so, so, good!! ^5 Cider shared with us their amazing strawberry Hopmonster cider that gives you all the tingly berry feels. Lastly, Portland Cider and Schilling have come together to create a special release they are calling “Cider House Love”. Each cider contains fresh local Oregon raspberries, but Portland’s Cider House Love is aged in a cabernet barrel; Meanwhile, Schilling’s Cider House Love is aged in a pinot noir barrel and finished off in a hickory barrel. Can you say wow? Both Portland’s and Schilling’s were noteworthy and deserve some love and attention.
The important note here, folks, it that they won’t be available forever, so get to either location and be one of the lucky ones!
Now for the events. There are over 70 different events to experience while you are here at Oregon Cider Week. Here are a few more shots to get you pumped up!
Here are a few we plan on attending:
Kicking off the week will be the Portland International Cider Cup Awards. Best large and small cideries of the year will be announced, as well as the $500 prize for “Best New Cidery of the Year”! Tickets can be found here:
Portland Cider House is hosting 8 different events during this time period including their Strawberry Release Party which is sure to be a great time. They will also have their Tacos & Turntables on Tuesday as well as a joint-event featuring The Bitter Housewife, 2 Towns Ciderhouse & Reverend Nat’s Cider crafting cider cocktails using local bitters and great cider.
Schilling’s brand new Portland location will be having its official grand opening Friday, June 16th. I would recommend making a stop in to check out their amazing new cider house complete with the largest selection of draft cider in the country located in the Goat Blocks community.
The very wonderful Cider Summit Portland. More info here:
The Official After Party for this event will be held at Cider Bite Hard Cider Taphouse:
New West Taproom will be having a Father’s Day party that will include a BBQ and a hike & cider event to take dad to! ^5 Cider, Reverend Nat’s, & Woodbox Cider will also be joining!
Wrapping up this week-long madness will be a Cider Overstock Garage Sale at the Reverend Nat’s taproom from 8-12am to celebrate the end of Oregon Cider Week!
Here is the full calendar of events:
Take a deep breath. I know it is too much excitement in one sitting. Just limitless fun and cider to be had during this time of year! I hope you make it and get your cider on!