A word about Michigan ciders . . .

Jeff Carlson, Cider-Making Guru

Before we stop at some more wineries, I thought we’d take a brief detour and look at ciders. My husband was a judge at the Great Lakes Cider & Perry Competition last weekend, so it’s on my mind-plus we can visit Tandem Ciders while we’re gallivanting around the Leelanau Peninsula.

“Now wait a minute,” you might be thinking. “Fermented apple and pear beverages . . . isn’t that wine?” Nope! For the scoop on cider, I interviewed Jeff Carlson, treasurer for Prime Time Brewers right here in West  Michigan and four-time American Homebrewers National Cider Maker of the Year and three-time Michigan Cider Maker of the Year (among other accolades).

Me: What’s the difference between apple cider and apple wine?
Jeff: Apple wine is generally higher in alcohol around 11-12%.  Cider lower 5-7 %

Why is Michigan cider the best? (Ok not an un-biased question but I’m asking it that way anyway ;-)
It’s local, it’s fresh, it’s real cider.  It’s not alco pop cider.

What’s your current drink of choice?
My own.  (I think the Prime Time Brewers club would agree!) OK Commercial - Uncle Johns Cider.

Anything else my readers should know?
Don’t settle for the imitation ciders, like Strowbow, Woodchuck, Crispin, Wyder’s, Ace. (Not sure I’m allowed to print that, but oh well!) Drink real Michigan Cider, Like Robinette’s, Uncle Johns, Vander Mill, Black Star Farms.

Last question . . . I have a Facebook poll going, Michigan Wine vs. Michigan Beer. Which gets your vote?

Today’s Trivia Question

How many members are listed in the Michigan Cider Maker’s Guild Directory? (click to see hint and to enter)

Note: You can enter at any time before April 30, midnight EST. Only one entry per question. Correct responses will be added to the pool of all month’s worth of correct responses. Winners of the prizes will be chosen at random from correct entries. For a list of prizes visit http://eatlocalwestmichigan.com/2011/03/25/april-is-michigan-wine-month/




  1. Zebe says:

    We do love cider. DH enjoys it (much more than wine) and I can have it because it is gluten free. I do wish more breweries & pubs would start serving cider (and gluten free beer) so that there’s more to share if we go tasting. It is getting better, but there are certain places where I have to just sit & drink water or pop. Yuck.


Speak Your Mind


Switch to our mobile site