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Hard Cider

Meet your new favorite fall sipper. At its simplest, cider—the boozy, hard kind, not the sweet stuff—is fermented, fresh-pressed apple juice. French import Etienne Dupont Cidre Bouché Brut de Normandie is dry and downright funky—think eau de Band-Aid, with a lingering medicinal taste. Stateside cider makers have gotten more rebellious with the traditional recipe. Some include a splash of something new, like Julian Cherry-Bomb Cider, a blend of apples and Montmorency cherries that pours a festive ruby red and goes down like cherry pie. Others dump cider straight into whisky casks. Cincinnati’s very own Kentucky Pete’s Cask Apple Cider, churned out in small batches at Meier’s Beverage Group in Silverton, is dry and smooth, with the rich caramel undertones of a good bourbon. How do you like them (local) apples?

Etienne Dupont Cidre Bouché Brut de Normandie Available at The Party Source, 95 Riviera Dr., Bellevue, (859) 291-4007

Julian Cherry-Bomb Cider Available at Market Wines, 128 W. Elder St., Over-the-Rhine, (513) 744-9888

Kentucky Pete’s Cask Apple Cider Available at Meier’s Wine Cellars, 6955 Plainfield Rd., Silverton, (513) 891-2900