Today we have a treat for you. Olivia, our cider buyer, has written up some quick notes about three of her favorites that we have in the shop. She came to us from the cider industry and we feel very lucky to have her and her expertise on the Community team. Read on to see why she’s so passionate about this often misunderstood category.


Like wine, apple ciders can tell a story. Some tell about a family’s history, others a tale of terroir, and a few showcase the personal tastes of the cider maker—the best do all three, of course, made with apples from beloved orchards that have captured the passions of generations of growers.

And just like wine, finding your cider style of choice can be daunting. There are thousands of apple varieties and even more growers claiming that their cider “really is the best.” Lucky for you, we’ve done the hard work for you and picked a selection that is diverse in production, style, and origin. If you’re into natty wines, enjoy a funky kombucha, or come into our shop looking for a six-pack of IPAs, consider these options instead. 

Astarbe Sagardotegia, “ByHur” – $25
This methode-champenoise cider hails from the Basque region of Spain. This is a famous cider region for good reason. Nestled between the western Pyrenees and the Bay of Biscay are incredible orchards with astounding age. Astarbe Sagardotegia is the oldest cider house in the country, with production dating back to 1563. Using a host of indigenous apple varieties, including the orchard’s own heirloom variety (Astarbe), this sparkling cider is extremely dry with sharp acidity. Honey, citrus, and hints of savory herbal notes work with the acidity to create a delicate balance. A perfect pairing for soft cheese, tinned fish, and a toasted baguette.


Maison Gamet, “Le Cider” NV – $33
Le Cider comes from Mardeuil, France, just outside of Reims, which is mostly known for its Champagnes and shares the refined palate of the region through the technique of a seasoned Champagne family. The Gamet family began making Champagne in the 1920s with vineyards spread across multiple estates on both banks of the Marne River. Their abandoned apple orchards were revived in an attempt to approach the land more holistically. This is truly the Champagne of the cider world: bright bubbles, low alcohol, and no residual sugar. It’s the perfect mid-day refreshment. Pop a bottle of this as a celebration, or pair it with eggs Benedict at brunch.


Abandoned Hard Cider, “Forager’s Reserve” – $23
Perhaps the most unique and limited of our selections, this cider highlights the wilderness of upstate New York. As their name would suggest, cider makers Martin Bernstein and Eric Childs work exclusively from feral apples and abandoned orchards in the Hudson Valley. Not only does this make their production inherently sustainable, but it makes every single bottling different. While they have no control over the apple varieties they are able to forage for a given cider, precision is found in their blends. The result is a pleasantly dry, slightly creamy, funky delight. This cider stands alone but would make an excellent addition to a PB&J after a long day in the sun.