SIDNEY, NY – Today’s Food and Farm Showcase takes us to a local cidery that’s seen explosive growth in recent years.
Awestruck Ciders, based in Sidney, produces and markets a wide variety of hard ciders.
It has 4 main varieties that it bottles and cans for sale in grocery stores, liquor stores, convenience stores and farmers markets.
They are the flagship Hibiscus Ginger, Apples and Pears, Lavender Hops and Eastern Dry.
Plus, it rotates between 3 different seasonal flavors and it routinely tries special one-offs at its 2 taprooms in Sidney and in Walton.
General Manager Bryan Birdsall says hard cider can appeal to a wide range of drinkers.
“You’re going to pull those flavored alcohol customers. You’re going to pull those rose and sweeter wine drinkers, which New York State tends to be, or America tends to be. You’re going to pull those citrusy IPA people. We’re the bridge that captures all of those drinkers,” said Birdsall.
Awestruck was founded in Walton by Casey Vitti and Patti Wilcox.
It moved into a combination production facility, warehouse and tasting room in Sidney in 2018.
The Sidney taprom is known for the classic school bus that patrons can sit and eat and drink in.
Awestruck partners with a rotating list of local restaurants to offer menus that change on a weekly or monthly basis.
Birdsall says sales of the cider are up 100% in the past year.
“The growth is so great right now that basically we just keep coming out with new stuff, with keeping quality and consistency at a premium, and our customers are telling us they want more,” says Birdsall.
Awestruck derives its apple juice from peels and cores supplied by a Western New York apple farm that produces apple pie filling.
Its ciders are currently available east of Syracuse through the capital region and down through the Hudson Valley, Catskills and Southern Tier.
It’s also frequently sampling its ciders at the Broome County Farmers Market on Upper Front Street on Saturdays from 9 to 1.
Mail order is also an option.
For more information, go to AwestruckCiders.com.