Rootstock Ciderworks Rosé and Barrel-Aged Legend Hard Ciders both win Silver medals in their respective categories at the 12th annual Great Lakes International Cider and Perry Competition hosted April 19-22, 2017 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
According to Nielson data, 2016 saw a slight dip in overall hard cider sales, while craft/local ciders experienced the largest spike in a 5-year period of more than a 39% increase in revenue within the category. Reflecting that growth in the craft hard cider industry, this year’s competition featured 1206 entries, up more than 20% over 2016. Entries came from 33 US States, 6 Canadian Provinces, England, France, Estonia, New Zealand, Spain, Ireland, and the Czech Republic. A total of 73 Gold Medals, 305 Silver Medals, and 386 Bronze Medals were awarded.
Judging was conducted by more than 70 judges representing amateur and commercial cider makers, beverage writers, authors, academics, and other cider aficionados. This year’s competition was sanctioned by the Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP).
“We are proud of this industry recognition and remain dedicated to crafting the highest quality ciders in the market. We grow some of the best apples here in Wayne County, and are excited to see NYS becoming known as a premier cider making region of the country.” says David DeFisher; founder and owner.
About Rootstock Ciderworks
Rootstock Ciderworks is a farmstead cidery located in Williamson, NY — 25-miles east of Rochester, NY near the shores of Lake Ontario. Established in 2012 by David DeFisher, Rootstock Ciderworks — the first post-prohibition farmstead cidery in the Rochester region — is dedicated to using only locally sourced ingredients in crafting premium ciders and perry. The all-natural ciders are made from fresh fruit grown on the fourth generation DeFisher Fruit Farms — over 500 acres of orchards within the largest apple producing county in the U.S.–Wayne County.
With a commitment to sustainability, we use the organic byproducts from the cider making process on the farm, so there are no waste products and we have a solar energy system, producing green energy. We also believe in supporting the local community and U.S. based companies — 95% of our equipment is made in Upstate New York or the U.S.
In the words of founder and owner, David DeFisher “We take great pride in the fruit that we grow, and in the fact that we are a TRUE craft beverage maker. We own the land, we grow it, we press, ferment and bottle it here on site.” We utilize only estate grown, fresh-pressed fruit and use no fining agents or chemicals, which strip the juice of its color, flavors, and aromas. We have grown from 6,000 gallons produced in 2015, to nearly 28,000 gallons in 2016.
Through our partnership with Wegmans Food Markets, Inc. (a privately held American regional supermarket chain headquartered in Rochester, New York) we have quickly become the second best selling hard cider in the Greater Rochester and Finger Lakes region, trailing closely behind a commercial national brand. Within 4 short weeks of expanding into the Buffalo area market, Rootstock was already Wegmans #3 selling hard cider in early 2016. Rootstock has also enjoyed early success with a recent launch into the Syracuse market as well in October of last year. Currently, our ciders and Perry can be found in retail outlets, bars and fine dining establishments throughout the state of New York.