There’s a first time for everything.
This fall we’re releasing something NEW — and a first for us.
We’ve been practicing for several years — discovering our personal style through trial & error, perfecting our techniques and releasing small batched for customer feedback. So we’re proud to announce that this fall, Happy Camper wild cider is coming to life!
Our cider ethos is simple: start with amazing apples and don’t screw it up!
Happy Camper is a cider crafted from heirloom apples grown in local orchards and pressed directly to oak barrels with NO additives. Yes, that means no: yeast, nutrients, sulfites, enzymes, sugar, adjuncts or other commercially standard stuff found in other ciders. The result is a lively and authentic cider that's precisely 6.3% alcohol by volume, dry, earthy and refreshing!
Happy Camper is honest and true to the fruit grown here in the Mid-Atlantic. We’ve been growing and fermenting grapes for the better part of a decade now and we’ve always loved the parallel nature of cider.
While we don’t grow apples commercially (yet), our neighboring fellow farmers do. The heirloom apples in Happy Camper wild cider are grown in two area orchards:
➡ Carolyn’s Orchard just over the hill in Carroll County, Md. We have a very special connection with these folks beyond sourcing apples for several years. Erin Brothers, the daughter of the farmer, is Lisa’s assistant winemaker here at Old Westminster. This is a coming together of worlds!
➡ Peter’s Orchard (30 miles up the road) in Adams County, Pa. Farmer and orchardist, Brett Krause, is one of the best in the business. Beyond growing apples, he produces fresh ciders that are esteemed throughout the region. Brett’s fresh ciders are made without any additives or adjustments: only apples. This provides a keen sense of what to look for in apples like flavor, tannin and acidity. It’s not all about high yields and sugar content.
After fermentation, Happy Camper ages in a 1,500 gallon American Oak cask for several months before bottling.
Cider, at its best, tells a truly American story. Did you know that the earliest colonists had a hard time growing grapes for wine and the grains and barley they needed to brew beer? So they grew apples and made cider a mainstay. We want to carry on that legacy in new and creative ways, so say hello to Happy Camper!
Beginning October 1, you’ll find Happy Camper at our tasting room and in retail shops and restaurants throughout Maryland, DC, Virginia, and California for starters.
Grab a 4-pack and take it on your next adventure!