Colonel Ricketts Hard Cider: A Taste of Columbia County PA

The countryside of North Central, PA, where The Inn,
Farmhouse and Brewery at Turkey Hill is located, is home to many great apple
orchards. It’s also home to Colonel Ricketts Hard Cider, a family company that
uses local-sourced apples to create a delicious selection of drinks.
Hard cider has a rich history in this country. It was the
beverage of choice for Founding Father John Adams who is said to have sipped a
cup with his breakfast. And it was the favored alcoholic beverage throughout
1800’s. But as other spirits, beer and wine gained popularity, hard cider’s
star dimmed. Now producers small and large have rediscovered this delightful
fruit-based alcoholic beverage and it’s a fast growing trend.
For the folks behind Colonel Ricketts, making cider has been
a hobby for over 35 years; they’d gift it to lucky friends and neighbors.  Then in 2006, they bought a cider press,
which allowed them more control over the apples and process. A company was
born!
Many varieties of apples are used in making the ciders—Macintosh,
Stayman, Corland, Gala, Fuji, and Red and Golden Delicious—all
from orchards in Columbia and neighboring counties. By mixing different types
of apples in varying amounts, they’re able to produce ciders with distinct
qualities and flavors, from semi-sweet to dry. The company also creates two
single-variety ciders, highlighting the apple’s unique flavors. Each year, new
flavors are developed based on the types available and the growing season, then
fermented and aged in once-used whisky barrels, which ifluences the final
flavor.
For those who are curious about the process, Colonel Ricketts
is happy to give tours on request.  The
cidery is located in Benton, about a half-hour north of The Inn, Farmhouse and
Brewery at Turkey Hill. Plan a stay with us – we’ll be happy to call ahead to arrange a tour for you.

Colonel Ricketts Hard Cider
126 S. 3rd Street, Benton
‘570-854-1948

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