While Sean and I will travel anywhere for cider, often we find being in Chicago means we don’t have to travel too far. In addition to The Northman – Chicago’s first cider pub, Right Bee Cider – Chicago’s first cidery, and ERIS Brewery and Cider House – Chicago’s first cider taproom, the city is surrounded by a rich culture of apples.
So it only makes sense that Chicago plays host to the amazing Second Annual Chicago Cider Week, February 12th to 17th, which takes cider lovers throughout the city. Events will include tastings at bars, restaurants and retail locations, community gatherings and educational opportunities. The week-long festival is a unique opportunity to spend time with and learn from, makers, growers, and cider drinkers.
Chicago Cider Week will kick off at 5 pm on the 12th at The Northman, which will be the one-stop place to gain all of the information for the week, ask questions, and enjoy an unrivaled collection of ciders.
Other events include a Cider Education Series on Tuesday night, with Charles McGonegal, of AeppelTreow winery, and Darlene Hayes, author of “Cider Cocktails – Another Bite of the Apple.” Virtue Cider will be offering a “Cider and Cheese pairing” at The Butcher’s Tap on Tuesday as well.
For Valentine’s Day, celebrate “It Must Be Love”, a romantic evening with Stem Ciders at The Northman for their 1 year anniversary, and “St. Valentine’s Day Massacre” at The Native, a prohibition style party complete with costumes and drinks concocted by the team from Redemption Whiskey and Blake’s Cider.
On Thursday night, Hopleaf will feature cider maker and fifth generation apple grower Mike Beck, of Uncle John’s Cider, for a “Meet and Greet” experience and rare tappings.
2 Towns Ciderhouse, Original Sin, and Seattle Cider Company are also throwing a blow out event at Easy Bar called Cheese Sex Cider. The event will feature a cheese and cider pairing with @cheesesexdeath and burlesque performances by Scarlett Begonias and Miss Fancy. That’s not all though, clear your vocal chords for an Ireland & UK Karaoke Competition at Harrigan’s Pub, where you can win great prizes! All proceeds from participation fees will go to the Helen David Relief Fund which helps bartenders with a breast cancer diagnosis. Cider specials for the occasion are presented by Aspall, Craigie’s and Thistly Cross, and a helping hand from Slane Irish Whiskey.
Friday night will be packed with events all over the city including Open Outcry in Beverly – which is where you will find me and Sean! – and Right Bee Cider opening their doors to their Urban Cidery.
The week comes to a close with the Cider Summit at the Navy Pier Aon Grand Ballroom. Two consecutive sessions will let you taste and explore over 150 ciders from all around the world. And don’t forget The Northman will be hosting both Pre and Post Summit parties – a perfect way to cap off a delicious week of cider.