German cider is flavoured very differently to British and French varieties as it has more of a sour, tart taste. It is often referred to as ‘Apfelwein’ or apple wine and has an alcohol content of 4.8% to 7%. German cider is a great alternative for those that do not like the bitter taste of beer.
The Germans make their cider from eating or cooking apples. The apples are pressed and the juice is fermented with yeast. Sometimes German cider is made with unprocessed juice from a tree known as the Speierling. Cider is mainly produced in Hesse. This region is home to a number of large producers, as well as small private cider-makers which tend to use traditional recipes. Regular cider competitions and fairs take place in this region.
Some people like to drink German cider hot, particularly in the winter or if they are suffering from a cold. Hot cider is usually served with a cinnamon stick and a slice of lemon.
German apple wine fairs
Many cider fairs take place in Frankfurt. As apple wine culture plays an important role in society there, it seems only right that they honour their favourite beverage with a festival. The events are very atmospheric with live bands, traditional cider songs and competitions. It is usually small private producers of cider that take part in the competitions. If you attend a cider or apple wine fair in Germany you will get to taste a variety of traditional German ciders as well as apple wine spirits.
Here at Beers of Europe we pride ourselves in offering the best selection of cider from around the world. If you are looking for a traditional German cider then you have definitely come to the right place. Drink it hot in the winter and cold in the summer!