Producer Profile

Redbyrd Orchard Cider is a small family-run sustainably managed fruit farm and cidery focused on heirloom, wild seedling and European cider apples to produce unique artisanal hard ciders. They are part of a small movement of New York cidermakers committed to bringing true cider back to the American table and cider apple orchards back to the American landscape. Redbyrd is comprised of a husband and wife team coming from backgrounds steeped in the winemaking and grapegrowing traditions of the Finger Lakes. Eric Shatt, former head winemaker at Ventosa Winery, previous nursery and vineyard manager for Hermann J. Wiemer Vineyard, and currently Cornell University’s Orchard and Research Farms Manager, along with Deva Maas, who has a background in Sustainable Agriculture from The Evergreen State College and a childhood within a family of one of the earliest wineries in the Finger Lake, have settled in to their true passion, growing apples and producing world-class ciders.

Redbyrd has two separate orchards, both of which are farmed organically and biodynamically. Eric says “We find a sense of spirit in farming this way and truly feel the fruit is more whole and balanced to provide more nutrition and/or flavor.” The first orchard, in Burdett was planted in 2003/4 and measures just one acre in size. They planted a second orchard in Trumansburg in 2011/12 which will be 4 acres once fully planted.

Redbyrd Orchard Cider approaches cidermaking with a winemaker’s sensibility. As with grapes to wine, to make truly great cider, you must start with truly great fruit. “We are lucky to live in an area ideal for pomme fruit and our goal is to grow the best fruit around and in turn offer you the best cider possible!”

“We are proud to be part of a movement of small cidermakers and orchardists committed to bringing true cider back to the American table and cider apple orchards back to the American landscape.” –Eric Shatt, owner & cidermaker

Cider Info

Starblossom: Sustainable. From apples grown on their 2 biodynamically farmed orchards as well as local apples purchased from growers. Focused on bittersweet and bittersharp apples, with 30% aged in French and American oak barrels. Redbyrd’s Starblossom is a blend of 14% Brown Snout, 10% Dabinett, 10% Porter’s Perfection, 7% Nehou, 6% Golden Russet, 6% Binet Rouge, 4% Yarlington Mill, 47% Mixed Heirloom (including Liberty, Tompkins King, and Baldwin). 0.0% residual sugar 8.3% alc/vol. 63 cs produced

Cloudsplitter: Biodynamic. This is Redbyrd’s flagship cider sourced entirely from their Newton Road in Burdett, NY (located in the Finger Lakes region). This site highlights the terroir of the Bath-Mardin soil and microclimate of the lovely hilltop orchard location. Throughout the summer they note particular trees which are producing the best bittersharp varietals and harvest them separately during the Fall. The apples used in the Cloudsplitter are always the most flavorful and the highest in sugar content. After harvesting these “special trees”, they press and ferment them separately. The unfined and unfiltered base cider then undergoes secondary fermentation in bottle without disgorging. A blend of 25% Wickson, 15% Porters Perfection, 10% Kingston Black, 7% Brown Snout, 7% Dabinett , 7% Ashmead’s Kernel, 5% Zabergau Reinette, 5%Bramley’s Seedling, 5% Roxbury Russett, 5% Gnarled Chapman, and 9% mixed Heirlooms. 0.0% residual sugar, 8.3% alc/vol. 40 cs produced

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