Cider Styles

There are roughly four styles of cider, generally named after the regions that claim to have invented cider. Such categorization is not really precise, sometimes too much generalizing and often does not match the real geographical origin of the cider. With these limits in mind, let's get over the individual styles.

English Cider and English Style Cider

English style cider is the most known and globally most common type of cider. At the same time it is also the broadest style of cider that is hard to generally describe. Partly this is because of poor legal definition of cider in British law, partly because there are so many cider makers in England that each have their own ideas about how cider should be done. The majority of English cider is done i relatively fast fermentation process and carbonated. However there are also bottle matured ciders and still ciders made in England. Most of ciders made in The Czech Republic are close to English style of cider.

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French Cidre and Frech Style Cidre

Many people think that Frech Cidre is a better drink than English Cider. This is a result of stricter state regulation of cidre in France, where the word cidre can only be used for drinks made of fermented 100% apple juice. This guarantees that no French cidre can be of the ugly industrial type. On the other hand this does not mean, that all French Cidre is superior to all English Cider.

French Cidre is generally made with the keeving process, from 100% apple juice. It is not carbonated as the carbon dioxide is naturally created by the fermentation process similarly to Champagne wine that might have been an inspiration for it. Most of French cidre comes from Bretagne or Normandie.

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Spanish Sidra Natural

Spanish version of cider is called Sidra Natural in Spanish or Sagardo in Basque. It is very dry, very sour almost bordering vinegar and still. Partly because of the lack of carbon dioxide it is always drunk with a special ritual that there is even a verb for it in Spanish - Escanciar. The point is to pour a glass from as high as possible. The Sidra hits the glass and oxidizes.

Sidra comes almost exclusively from the northern parts of Spain - Asturias and Basque Country

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German Apfelwein

German style cider is called apfelwein. As you may guess from the name it aims to be as close to white wine as possible. Apfelwein is usually still wine with alcohol content much higher than cider on almost wine like levels. Very often apfelwein is sour. Ordinary apfelwein is cuveé from undisclosed number of apple varieties, but there are also apfelweins made from one kind of apples named after such apple kind similarly as wine is often named after the grapes type.

Most apfelwein comes from Hessen

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Industrial Cider

A specific category is industrial cider. This cider is made on large scale in almost automatic factories owned usually by big breweries. It does not have much in common with cider and in some countries this drink cannot legally be called cider.

Usually the production is based on apple concentrate and water. Very often so much water goes in that the resulting drink would not smell, look and taste as apples so sugar, artificial aroma, color and other chemicals are added to fool humans.

At InCider Bar we do not serve this kind of anti-cider. But for completeness we keep a list of these as to know which chemical drinks one should avoid.