Cider (also known as hard cider) is a drink from England which has grown and established itself as one of the popular drinks in the 18th and 19th centuries. When there were no preservation methods, it was difficult to keep fresh cider as it naturally ferments into hard cider. Hard cider rapidly developed into a common way of storing apples after a successful harvest season, cider then was considered one of the safest drinks, even safer than water and was endorsed by most health physicians. This was because there was lack of effective means of treating water. But times have passed, and the drink is swinging its way towards extinction.
Cider is now amongst one of the world’s most underrated and unfairly treated drink today. It is regarded as cheap, disgusting and nasty, as people grew to forget the time’s cider competed with the best wines from France, Spain, and Italy (especially French wines because of its semblance in composition and production) and was the major drink of the English men. The problems of cider started with its production, major brands started producing ciders with less than 35% apple juice, with water, sugar and artificial colouring as the rest ingredient. The drink started falling down from pecking order when it gained the reputation of leaving one completely wasted just after a few pints.
Cider was considered one of the greatest products of craft but later became a problem as the art of brewing the right cider gradually began to diminish. Good ciders are made from apples and apple juice is the one major ingredient that makes the difference. The best ciders are the ones that contain high apple juice content from 60% and above. Another factor that contributes to the quality of cider is the variety of apple used.
The best apples are grown in Britain, the country is known to have the best apple-growing climatic conditions and plenty of apple orchards. Like mentioned above, the variety of apple used to have its effect and impacts its own flavour to a good cider. A good cider should give sweetness, sharpness, and dryness in equal balance because an apple contains sugar, tannin and acid. Some species of apple like the Kingston black and the Dabinett give off unique flavour when used for ciders but most ciders produced in a large quantity is a full mix from the over 4,000 species of apples grown in the UK. The true craft of the cider maker lies in his ability to gather the right blend that gives off a perfect balance of drinkability and character.
Cider apples naturally ferment between 7 to 10 percent ABV. When compared to a regular beer, it is a whole lot stronger. Good cider lovers think cider as an apple wine and when the fruit is perfectly blended, the over 7% ABV will not even be noticed. If you want to indulge in cider, you should drink it the same way you take wine and be ensured you will get the best from it. Drink it in moderation and you will enjoy yourself.