Until this year, my experience with drinking hard apple cider was restricted to a pint of hard cider at a local pub or an occasional 12 ounce bottle. More often than not, I selected hard cider when I was looking for something other than beer, but not wanting to drink hard liquor. Unfortunately, most hard cider available for consumption in bars tends to be sweet versus dry.
In my travels, I am always looking for new and different foods and drink to experience. I do not remember when I first read about Julian Hard Cider, but earlier this year I was able to spend the weekend in southern California and knew that I was going to make a stop in Julian, CA. There was something cool about the idea of purchasing a couple of bottles of Julian Hard Cider in southern California, located about as far as possible from the historical hard apple cider producing region of New England.
If I was restricted to one word to describe Julian Hard Cider, that word would be impressive. Whereas most of the well-known hard apple ciders are sweet and not always bottled from fermented pressed apple juice, Julian Hard Cider is the real deal. It can be described as experiencing a superior dry sparkling wine with just a hint of apple. Julian Hard Cider is bottle in a 22 fluid ounce / 650 ml bottle with a 6.99% ABV (Alcohol by Volume) content. The color of the cider is pale (nearly colorless) and the carbonation was perfect (extremely small bubbles of CO2). I enjoyed the cider very much and was feeling quite good after drinking the entire bottle.
The history of hard apple cider is the United States stretches back to the first apple orchards planted by some of the earliest colonists. There was a time when hard apple cider was the preferred beverage. However, between the changes in demographics, improvements in grain production and then the period of Prohibition, the hard apple cider industry nearly disappeared from the United States. Julian Hard Cider Company and similar hard apple cider producers have done an amazing job of revitalizing an industry that goes back to the very beginnings of the immigration of Europeans.
It was only when I came back from southern California did I specifically look to see which brands of premium hard apple cider were available for purchase in Houston, TX. It was then that I saw that I could have enjoyed Julian Hard Cider sooner versus waiting for a trip to Julian, CA.