The Quest began in earn est when we returned home. Exploiting the power of the Internet, I learned that in the USA we have a 3-tier distribution system for managing alcoholic beverages that was developed following Prohibition. In this system, all products must first be transferred from the makers/producers or importers to the wholesalers or distributors in each State, then to various retailer types and finally to consumers. Each State and even various counties/cities in each State, may take a different position about how the distribution system is ultimately implemented and what they will allow to be sold or transported legally in their State or locale.
Now that I understood basically how the system worked, I visited the website of the British cider we were after and found from them who imported their cider in the US. The Washington state importer’s website listed the wholesale distributors for our state/region.
The Revelation-- I don't remember when I first tasted hard cider in the USA, but it was likely no more than 10-15 years ago and it would have been one of the very few US ciders commercially available at that time. I began my adult drinking ventures with beer and over time my preferences expanded to include wine and mixed cocktails (especially rum based). However, about 6 years ago I discovered a few more hard cider brands for sale in local stores and tried them. Somewhere during this time I fell in love with hard cider. It was not a cider revelation built on a singular experience with a particular cider but rather grew over time as I experienced many different ciders. It’s not a monogamous relationship though, I still enjoy other alcoholic beverage types, but there is now a new favorite tipple. And, I'm not alone.
The Quest— my wife and I travel extensively for work and fun. Many trips include visits to England and Ireland t o visit family members. It was in the British Isles that we learned about the long heritage and breadth of excellent ciders available. We discovered how important and popular cider remains in these countries as well as how easy it is to find a broad range of ciders in pubs and restaurants. Closer to home (Virginia), we learned how cider had been an important beverage to the early American colonists and that many heirloom apple orchards are once more producing apples for cider production.
In 2010, while visiting family in England, we had lunch at a traditional pub in the "picture-postcard" village of Finchingfield in East Anglia and ordered the recommended cider. The cider pint really hit the spot following a long ride getting reacquainted to left-side driving and English rural roads, as well as the perfect accompaniment to a tasty meal. The cider was produced by an English cidery with a 200 year old history of making great ciders.
But since the distributors did not list the retailers selling the cider, old fashioned phone calls provided the missing information. Finally, the cider was found and purchased and the Quest, fulfilled!
Bottom-line— what we learned from this Quest set the stage for our journey away from our experience and toward our new Campaign.
The Cyder Market Website— The website began in 2011 as a front-door to what was planned as a dedicated retail cider shop in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia. Unfortunately, for a number of reasons, the retail venture never launched however we continue to maintain and expand the Cyder Market website as a service to the cider producing and drinking public. The Cyder Market website is a one-stop resource for information and links to hard cyder/cider products, makers, equipment, supplies, supporters and events in the USA and worldwide. We invite all-cider lovers to assist in expanding this resource!
My wife especially enjoyed this particular cider and thus began my Quest to find and buy it when we returned home. Little did I know then just how difficult and frustrating it would be to locate and purchase a particular cider in America.
The Cyder Market hard cider information for cider makers and drinkers and links for cider equipment and supplies.
The Cyder Market, LLC is a service-disabled veteran owned small business opened in 2011. The owners/partners are retired US Army officers with decades of experience in fields to include infantry, engineering, nursing, healthcare delivery and healthcare facility design and construction. The following recounts the journey that took us from those areas of expertise and set us on our current campaign.
About Us The Cyder Market hard cider information for cider makers and drinkers and links for cider equipment and supplies.