Hard cider is rapidly expanding beyond Martinelli’s and into a craft beverage. Traditionally made with apples, cider can also be from the juice of other fruits such as peaches, berries, and pears. The typical ABV for hard ciders are also very flexible, ranging from 2% to 8.5%. It has been cited by various publications as the next trend in beverages and a plethora of artisanal shops have cropped up, offering styles of cider for every palate.
Hard ciders offer restaurants an impressive variety of options to utilize for both food pairing and expanding its beverage menu in lieu of cocktails. It is also a great gender-neutral choice: in addition to 47% of women who are drinking more cider to try new brands, 21% of men are drinking more cider instead of other alcohol. Overall, 36% of regular drinkers have a very positive opinion of the beverage and 33% of male drinkers have grown to like the taste (Alcoholic Beverage DemandTracker).
The main obstacle to increased cider adoption is the lack of its availability in restaurants and bars. 26% of regular drinkers say they would drink more if it were more commonly offered and 15% of occasional drinkers agree. While some non-drinkers maintain cider is “not for people their age”, 8% of them state they would drink it more often if it were more popular. Thus, it seems cider protesters can be persuaded with the changing tide and the best course of action is to begin stocking the beverage as an early adapter in the changing food & beverage climate.