For the third consecutive year, the Hard Ciders produced by Thompson’s Cider Mill in Croton-on-Hudson, NY, have been recognized for their distinctive character, taste and quality in the annual Great American Cider Competition.
The recently announced results of the 2022 judging saw Thompson’s craft ciders take six medals including Gold for its Apple Rose, Silver for its Apple-Raspberry and Apple-Blueberry blends, and Bronze for its Heirloom Dry and Apple-Black Cherry.
Hard ciders from across the United States, Canada and more than 20 other nations entered wines, beers and spirits in addition to ciders for judging which is conducted by the Raise-a-Glass Foundation in Rochester, NY. The not-for-profit foundation, in turn, categorizes and donates unopened bottles to charitable organizations for use in their fundraising events.
“We are genuinely gratified to have independent experts who are sampling ciders from around the globe rank ours among the best,” said Geoff Thompson, owner of the boutique operation he founded 46 years ago. “Thanks to the talents of our cidermaker Dan O’Brien and the high-quality apples we grow and source from orchards in Westchester and the Hudson Valley, we have been able to create a growing array of high-quality, small-batch ciders. We set a very high bar for ourselves and that, combined with an obsessive attention to detail, comes through in our finished ciders.“
Thompson said he and O’Brien were especially pleased that the Apple Rose they introduced last fall earned a Gold Medal. “We worked long and hard to capture the beauty and true rose character that one associates with rose wines. I’m happy to say that after a lot of time, trial and effort, we captured the flavor profile we were looking for. Based on the response to our first vintage, our customers and now the judges agreed. That makes it all worthwhile.”
Since first entering the Great American Cider Competition in 2020, Thompson’s hard ciders have consistently scored well. The mill’s flagship Heirloom Dry, described by the judges this year as “layered, with good acidity and a pleasing finish,” has picked up two Silver medals, as have its Semi-Dry, Apple-Blueberry, and Apple-Raspberry, which also took a Gold in 2021. Other medal winners have been its Apple-Black Cherry and its Perry, hard cider made 100% from Pears.
In addition to being a licensed farm cidery, Thompson’s is a bonded winery. A limited production of Blossom White apple wine is bottled annually and has twice been a medal winner.
“We are most appreciative of the sponsors of this special competition and to the judges who give their time and expertise to make this a worthwhile, enjoyable and friendly event. It is an honor and a privilege for a local area cidery like ours to be among ciders from around the world,” Thompson said. “To have our ciders be recognized is truly special. And we are proud to play a small part in helping the Raise-a-Glass Foundation in its unique mission.”
Thompson’s Cider Mill is on a 5.5-acre hilltop site adjacent to the Teatown Lake Reservation in the southwest corner of the Town of Yorktown that has been in orchard use since 1880. Geoff Thompson acquired the property and in 1980 began restoring the orchard which today features 525 semi-dwarf apple trees producing some thirty varieties of heirloom, rare varieties, as well as unique hard cider varieties.
The mill is well known for its fresh cider, as well as for the more than 30 varieties of eating apples available during the fall season. It first began offering hard ciders six years ago.
Thompson’s Cider Mill hard ciders are carbonated, have an 6.8% abv (alcohol by volume) and are gluten-free. They are available in 750ml screw-top bottles and the Semi-Dry is also available in 12-ounce bottles. The Blossom White wine (10% abv) is available in 750ml bottles.
The hard ciders can be purchased at the Mill on weekends from September-Christmas. During the balance of the year ordered and picked up at the Cider Mill by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or texting 914-409-3433. Pricing and a listing of select area restaurants and pubs where the hard ciders are available on draft or bottles is on the website.