The Cider Farm is hiring!

2018 Full-Time Orchard Positions

About The Cider Farm

  • We are an expanding, organically managed apple orchard growing specialty apples to make The Cider Farm apple brandy and ciders. Both products are made under contract off-farm.
  • We have been grafting and purchasing trees. About 9000 trees are in the orchard and 3000 are in the tree nursery. We will expand to at least 20,000 trees within five years.
  • We are reclaiming over 60 ac of timberland from invasive species.
  • We are establishing 35-acres of prairie, windbreaks, and pollinator habitat adjacent to orchard blocks.
  • Our farm hosts research and educational initiatives.

 

Qualifications

  • Ability to appropriately balance speed and quality of work.
  • Strong verbal communication skills and ability to follow directions, particularly regarding safety.
  • The work is very physical and outdoors. You must be able to frequently lift 30 to 50 lbs.; to bend and squat for work at the tree base; to run weedwackers.
  • Experience in horticultural production is desired, while previous orchard work is a plus. Mechanical skills are highly desired. Experience managing others is a plus; the right person could move into managerial responsibilities.

 

Duties

The work is diverse and changes from week to week, if not day to day. Work includes, but is not limited to:

  • Graft apple and pear trees.
  • Move or erect deer fencing.
  • Dig out and plant trees.
  • Water and stake or trellis trees. Attach trees to stakes or trellising.
  • Prune trees. Apply limb spreaders and other tree training devices.
  • Apply or remove tree guards.
  • Weeding – Hand weed and operate a weedwacker cautiously around trees or electric fencing.
  • Assist with prairie burns. Sow cover crop or prairie seed.
  • Apply hay mulch or horse manure.
  • Monitor for disease and insect pests.
  • Spray trees with NOP-approved materials with a backpack sprayer.
  • Harvest apples.
  • Help with, if not manage, apple pressings keeping track of varieties and amounts pressed.
  • Spray garlic mustard in early spring or late fall with herbicide.       Hand-pull garlic mustard at other times.
  • Clean small and large equipment.

 

Dates and Times of Work

  • February through November, weather permitting, Monday through Friday.       A few weekends, if needed.

 

Compensation

  • Starting wage depends on experience and qualifications and ranges from $8 to $15 per hour.
  • Hourly wage can be adjusted pending work performance and length of service.
  • Orchard management opportunities available for the right person.

 

To Apply

  • Send a cover letter, resume, as well as three employer references by email to deirdre@theciderfarm.com

Watch The Cider Farm Videos on YouTube

There’s so much activity to share at The Cider Farm! One exciting bit of news is that our Ciders and Cyser will be available in 500 ml bottles in July. You can follow more on this big news on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

We’re also glad to share that we’ve recently created a YouTube channel where we’ve been uploading our best and favorite videos of The Cider Farm and we would LOVE for you to subscribe!

You can also subscribe to our regular newsletter which publish no more than once per month.

Thank you for being a fan of The Cider Farm!

Locations of where to find The Cider Farm on-tap are growing!

The Cider Farm ciders are on tap in more and more locations.  Thanks for asking for it wherever you go. As new locations arise, we post them on our Cider webpage as well as Instagram and Facebook. If you haven’t yet, stop by to enjoy our Classic Dry Cider at  Whole Foods Market in Madison, The Sugar Maple in Milwaukee, our Oak-Aged is at the HopCat in Madison and our Classic Dry on tap at SmallBar in Chicago.  Tremlett’s is on tap now at the Publican in Chicago and there’s so many more!  All locations rotate our ciders in and out. They may only last a week or days.  You can now check into our Ciders on Untappd!  We appreciate letting any retailer know that you want The Cider Farm Ciders.   The only local cider made from organically grown and true cider apples!

Get immediate updates from us on Facebook.

Get immediate updates from us on Facebook.

3-yr Aged Brandy Release Party – October 20th

All our welcome to our 4th Annual Apple Brandy Release party this Thursday at Yahara Bay Distillers‘ new location (6250 Nesbitt Rd., near Quivey’s Grove).  The party is from 5 to 10pm (no charge).  And we are releasing our first 3-yr Aged Apple Brandy!

Enjoy a tour of the new Distillery, free samples of our 2-yr and 3-yr aged Apple Brandy and all of Yahara Bay’s 25 distilled products, a cash bar, and the Art Gallery featuring local artists.  See brandy-2yr-labeled-2016their bottling operation for all the alcoholic products found at Vom Fass stores nation-wide, right at Yahara Bay.  Bring friends – it’s open to the public.

If you reserved The Cider Farm Apple Brandy via our website, we’d love to get it into your hands this Thursday.  You can also purchase it this Thursday evening, as well as buy gift boxes and our Brandy Snifter.  In fact, enjoy a cocktail in our Brandy snifter while you tour the Distillery.

And remember that shipping is available to most states.

In the main event room, will be Trivia starting at 6pm. Listen up for Apple Brandy related questions.  Then view the Packer Game.  (This is apart from our event and open to all.)

We hope to see you Thursday!
 
Cheers,
-Deirdre and John

3rd Annual Cider Farm Dinner at Harvest Restaurant October 23rd

Harvest Restaurant-Madison is hosting their 3rd Annual The Cider Farm Dinner Sunday, October 23rd at 6 PM, The six-course menu created by Chef Matt Schieble features our Apple Brandy, as well as our five ciders, apples, squash, and an apple-fed Berkshire pig we raise for the event. Reservations are required as the event sells out: 608-255-6075 . A donation from this dinner goes to REAP Food Group on whose board of directors The Cider Farm’s Deirdre Birmingham has served.  The menu is posted at https://www.facebook.com/events/521926934663847/  Harvest is at 21 N Pinckney St, Madison, WI.  Reservations (non-refundable) are $65 per person and include both the food and beverages, including The Cider Farm Ciders and Apple Brandy.  Please provide a generous tip to Harvest’s well-trained wait staff.

 

Where Can I Find The Cider Farm Products?

Often, the question comes up, “Where can I find The Cider Farm products?”

We are just rolling out our “Classic Dry” Ciders in select restaurants and Whole Foods Markets in Madison, Milwaukee, and Chicago that have tap lines and that feature local, organically grown, finely crafted foods and beverages. In Fall 2016 through Winter 2017, we will be releasing our “Classic Dry” cider as well as four other dry ciders and one cyser. All of these are served on tap and have “cider refreshment with wine complexity!”

Madison, Wisconsin

lucille-madison-logoIn Madison, enjoy our “Classic Dry” currently on tap at Lucille’s (just off the Square on the corner of King St.) where they make superb oven-fired pizza with local ingredients, including crust made from wheat fermented in local beer.

Middleton, Wisconsin

In Middleton, enjoy the “Classic Dry” now on tap at The Craftsman Table and Tap, where they enthusiastically ordered two kegs to start with.  Watch for it at the Freehouse Pub and at World of Beers.

Whole Foods Market

Whole Foods Market in Madison will be adding our “Classic Dry” cider to their tap lines as soon as one opens. Yes, Whole Foods in Madison has tap lines – six of them!

Whole Foods Market in Chicago has 16 stores with tap lines that will all be carrying our ciders this fall, too.

LostValleyCider-logoMilwaukee, Wisconsin

In Milwaukee, visit Lost Valley Cider, Wisconsin’s first cider bar to enjoy our Classic Dry. Visit with Stuart and Chandra for a line-up of many great ciders on tap and in bottles unlike anywhere in the Midwest!

 

The Northman of Chicago features The Cider Farm's Classic Dry CiderOther Midwest Locations

  • Look for us currently on tap at 8th Street Ale House in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.
  • Find our cider at The Northman, Chicago’s first cider pub and bistro featuring the most extensive menu of ciders anywhere in the Midwest!
  • You’ll also find our “Classic Dry” Cider available in September in Madison at The Malt House on East Washington and at Jac’s Tap House on Monroe St., Madison.

About Our Cider

Our “Classic Dry” Cider is a blend of five English cider apples, all known for their tannin profiles. These tannic apples give the cider complexity and mouthfeel unlike any table apple. These apples are Major, Kingston Black, Somerset Redstreak, Chisel Jersey and Dabinett. The base apple is Liberty, a tart apple developed by Cornell University, that gives the cider the acids and sugars needed to blend with the tannins.All apples in our five ciders are certified organic.

Tremlett’s Bitter is and English Cider AppleAll apples in our five ciders are certified organic.The other ciders being released are Tremlett’s, a blend of Tremlett’s Bitter (English cider apple that lives up to its name!) with the tart and aromatic Priscilla apple, all organically grown.

The other ciders being released are Tremlett’s, a blend of Tremlett’s Bitter (English cider apple that lives up to its name!) with the tart and aromatic Priscilla apple, all organically grown.

Our Oak-Aged Cider was aged for 2 months in a medium-toast American oak and untoasted French oak, with 20% of the cider aged in our Apple Brandy brandy from our 2015 Brandy release.

Equinox is our hopped cider, named for the Equinox hops we chose to give this cider herbaceous and lightly citrus aromas, that push the cider in the direction of a Sauvignon Blanc.

Haralson Dry is named after the Haralson apple, a 100-year old Minnesota apple, organically grown by our friends Harry and Jackie Hoch just over the river in La Crescent, Minnesota. The Haralson apple is joined by Honey Gold and Regent apples.

Ask For It!

Please feel free when you are in restaurants to ask if they carry ciders from The Cider Farm.

The Cider Farm Brandy

While we do have a few bottles of our 2015 Apple Brandy available, people are reserving out 2016 Apple Brandy. Mark your calendar for our October 20th release of not only our 2-year aged brandy and but for the first time our 3-year aged brandy at Yahara Bay Distillery in Madison. All are welcome!

-Deirdre and John
The Cider Farm

Farmhouse Chicago Five-Cider Release on August 3

We are very pleased to play a central role in Farmhouse Chicago’s Five-Cider Release on August 3 from 6 to 8pm! If you are in or near Chicago and you are a cider lover you won’t want to miss this event. It even supports a great nonprofit, Family Farmed, from whom our farm has directly benefitted.

Join us at Farmhouse Chicago on Aug 3 2016 for a cider release eventBoth Farmhouse Chicago and Family Farmed are special to us. And here’s why.

It was actually through Farmhouse that we started using Fox Valley Winery, a top-notch, award-winning winery in Illinois to make our ciders. We started by private labeling cider for Farmhouse using our 2014 certified organic apple juice that includes rare, true cider apples from English cider varieties. These varieties have tannins that table apples do not have. They give the cider mouthfeel and complexity, unlike any table apple. The 2014 vintage was sold by Farmhouse at its Chicago, Evanston and Farm Bar locations in 2015. They sold very well! They’re gone!

Family Farmed gave us the opportunity to be in their Good Food Business Accelerator. For six months this last fall and winter we met weekly in Chicago’s 1871 (technology accelerator) to learn more about scaling our business and making the necessary contacts to do so. We are forever grateful to them.

Now the 2015 vintage is being released at this great event on August 3. I’ll be there as the apple grower and to lift a glass to the orchard, to Farmhouse, and to you – who will enjoy refreshing ciders with a wine-like complexity.

Cheers,
-Deirdre


More Info

Work with us at The Cider Farm!

Do you enjoy being outdoors and have an interest in organics?  We are looking for additional Orchard Hands at The Cider Farm in Mineral Point, WI.

To apply, send a cover letter and resume to deirdre@theciderfarm.comApple_Picking

Qualifications

  • Ability to appropriately balance speed and quality of work
  • Strong verbal communication skills and ability to follow directions, particularly regarding your safety.
  • The work is physical and outdoors. You must be able to frequently lift 30 to 50 lbs.; to bend and squat for work at the tree base; to run weedwackers with brush-cutting blades; to carry and use a tree ladder.
  • Associates or Bachelors degree required. Experience in horticultural production is desired, while previous orchard work is a plus. Mechanical skills are highly desired. Experience managing others is a plus.

Duties

The work is diverse and changes from week to week, if not day to day. Work includes, but is not limited to:

  • Move or erect deer fencing.
  • Dig out and plant trees.
  • Water and stake or trellis trees. Attach trees to stakes or trellising.
  • Prune trees. Apply limb spreaders and other tree training devices.
  • Apply or remove tree guards.
  • Hand weed. Operate a weedwacker cautiously around trees or electric fencing.
  • Sow cover crop or prairie seed.
  • Assist with prairie burns.
  • Apply hay mulch or horse manure.
  • Monitor for disease and insect pests.
  • Spray trees with NOP-approved materials with a backpack sprayer.
  • Harvest apples.
  • Help with, if not manage, apple pressings keeping track of varieties and amounts pressed.
  • Spray garlic mustard in early spring or late fall with herbicide. Hand-pull garlic mustard at other times.
  • Clean small and large equipment.

Dates and Times of Work

Mid-February until mid-November, weather permitting. Part-time and full-time workers needed. April, May, September and October are the most demanding months and when labor is most critical.

HandsTools

Boxing Day is coming!

We had fun last year being a part of Around the Farm Table’s “Boxing Day” episode with our Apple Brandy on Wmezzanine_768.jpg.fit.300x169isconsin Public Television.  It even became their most popular show of the year!  Watch it here.

You will see why it was so popular when you see the show’s host, Inga who is an organic dairy farmer, enjoying that Apple Brandy!  And she made a darn good Figgy Pudding from it, of course while imbibing on Brandy!  You will also note a playful take-off on Downton Abbey, perhaps PBS’s most popular show ever.  It starts with the down cow named Abbey and goes from there.

Boxing Day is the British tradition of boxing up gifts given on December 26th for those that had to work on Christmas day.  I say, give them Brandy!

Cheers.

-Deirdre and John

 

2015 Apple Brandy Update

We appreciate all who’ve been purchasing The Cider Farm Apple Brandy, some of whom reserved last November!  We’d love to have pictures of you enjoying the Apple Brandy and any recipes for food or cocktails that you’ve enjoyed. JB DB enjoying brandy Xmas cropped

We had a great barrel harvest this year, going well beyond any expectations.  One never knows how much evaporates for the “Angels’ share” as it matures in the barrels for two years, and what remains for us mere mortals.  A great barrel harvest meant that we had 50% more Apple Brandy than we conservatively took reservations for.  So there are extra bottles and gift boxes to date!  You are welcome to purchase more from Yahara Bay Distillers.

Yahara Bay can ship it anywhere in the U.S. by FedEx.  And with the scores of packages shipped, the process is streamlined and the rates seem to have dropped a bit.

Reservations can be placed, as usual, on our website or just call us at 608-219-4279 with your order.

We are proud to say that this is the only Apple Brandy in the U.S. made from organically grown, true cider apples.

We hope that The Cider Farm Wisconsin Apple Brandy adds cheer to your holiday gatherings with friends and family.  It certainly is for us.

Cheers!
-John and Deirdre