The competition, put on by the Great Lakes Cider & Perry Association, has grown to be the second largest hard cider competition in the world. Hard cider producers from across the country and Europe have submitted their products, hoping to win an award.
“It’s a great time to get together with other cider makers,” Andy Sietsema, owner of Sietsema Orchards in Ada, said. With the growing cider movement in West Michigan, Andy anticipates a time when Grand Rapids will be considered a “West Michigan Cider City.”
Sietsema, named one of four up-and-coming cider makers to watch in 2013 by SeriousEats.com, has submitted his Red, Orange and Yellow Label ciders as well as a limited special reserve cider that has not been available since last fall.
A panel of judges, consisting of Beer Judge Certification Program judges, industry professionals, and media will sample the cider blindly. Judgment of the ciders will be based on style, level of carbonation, level of sweetness and any special ingredients or processes used in production.
The public will get a chance to sample a few of the competing ciders at HopCat on March 23. A Cider Tap Takeover will begin at 5 p.m. and Sietsema Orchard, Vander Mill, Uncle John’s, Tandem and Black Star Farms ciders will be available.
The Great Lakes Cider & Perry Association is a nonprofit organization formed to showcase and promote the finest fermented apple and pear beverages in North America, as well as to help educate consumers and producers about them. For more information about the association or the competition, please visit http://www.greatlakescider.com/
Sietsema Orchards is an Ada, Michigan based company that provides quality apples and a family orchard experience to West Michigan residents. Since 1934, Sietsema Orchards has been keeping the family farming tradition alive. In 2010, the fourth generation farmers opened their doors to the public and continue to provide a family farm experience today. For more information on Sietsema Orchards, please call 616.676.5584, e-mail at email@example.com or visit http://www.sietsemaorchards.com.