In search of the best hard cider: Portland, Oregon finds

Rev-Nat-Jesse-Radonski-652x521-1 Cider has become the new drink of choice. While once we tasted only beer and wine in search of satisfying our preferences, now it is not unusual to attend a cider tasting or visit a ciderie.

One hour east of Portland, the Hood River Valley is filled with orchards and farms that furnish ingredients for the region’s artisan producers, including a blooming cadre of cideries.

The valley, now awash in blossoms, plays host to the second annual Hood River Hard-Pressed Cider Fest on April 11. Guests can sample from among 30 varieties, including concoctions from a hefty valley contingent that includes Gorge Cyder House, Fox Tail Cider, HR Ciderworks, Rack & Cloth, The Gorge White House and Hood Valley Hard Cider. Ciders are, of course, paired with food, and local art and music round out the event.

Closer in, Portland Cider Co. in Oregon City pours samples and pints and fills growlers, and will be joining Portland’s flourishing cider community with the 24-tap Portland Cider House opening on S.E. Hawthorne Blvd. in March.

Other local cider producers include Southeast Portland’s Coopers Hall, where Alter Ego Cider makes apple and raspberry ciders, and Reverend Nat’s Hard Cider, where the new North Portland taproom offers tasting trays of diverse samples. For those seeking cider on tap, Bushwhacker Cider (the cored-apples-elizabeth-rose-1untry’s first cider bar) and St. Honoré Boulangerie’s S.E. Division St. location are good bets.

Craft beer bars Apex and Saraveza also maintain a solid rotation, including selections from the North Tabor neighborhood’s urban cidery, Cider Riot! Small producer Swift Cider, the reincarnation of Outcider, is available at bars, restaurants and growler-filling stations, while Ford Farms/Cyderworks turns out French-style hard cider produced with fruit from their Sauvie Island acreage.

Note: Information provided by Travel Portland

More on Oregon Ciders

Northwest Cider Association

The Oregonian’s Six Ciders We Love