Nine Pin Cider Works, a craft cider company in Albany, New York
, producing hard cider from Capital District and Hudson Valley apples, has become the first licensed farm cidery in The Empire State.
Last October, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed legislation establishing a new license for farm cideries to increase opportunities for this growing agricultural industry. Under a new law, cideries like Nine Pin are able to operate a tasting room where they are able to sell their product by the pint, enabling them to more immediately reap financial rewards. This fact was a significant draw for the del Peral family as they chose to apply for the new license.
"The cider-making process represents the incredible spirit of where the apples are grown. New York State's climate gives apple producers an outstanding environment to grow great apples for cider making. It's an incredible honor to become the state's first licensed cidery here in Downtown Albany under the new Farm Cideries Law. We applaud Governor Cuomo
for his dedication to making New York open to business to hard cider producers such as Nine Pin," said Alejandro del Peral, cidermaker, Nine Pin Cider Works.
Operated by the del Peral family, “the company’s products deliver a crisp, refreshing taste using farm fresh fruit including apples grown from seed on the del Peral family farm,” the Governor’s Office said. In 2013 Alejandro del Peral perfected his own cider blend, winning a gold medal at the Great Lakes International Cider & Perry Competition. His winning, noncommercial cider is called Catskill Thunder.
“The new farm cidery licensing law that I signed last year is already playing a central role in supporting the growth of local businesses across the state,” Governor Cuomo said. “With the distinction of being New York’s first ever licensed farm cidery, Nine Pin Cider Works is a testament to how the State is creating new economic opportunities, growing local industries and creating world-class products.”
The law signed by the Governor in October 2013 authorizes the licensing of farm cideries for the manufacture and sale of cider made from crops grown in New York State and excludes licensed farm cideries from the sales tax information return filing requirements. In order to obtain a farm cidery license, the hard cider must be made exclusively from apples and other pome fruits grown in New York State, and no more than 150,000 gallons may be produced annually.
In addition, the limit on the alcohol content for cider has been raised from 7 percent to 8.5 percent, thereby addressing the vagaries of the fermentation process. Most significantly, if a cider producer’s product meets the definition of both hard cider and wine, the law affords the producer the choice of whether the product will be marketed and sold as wine or cider, based on their individual business and marketing needs. The new farm cideries also have privileges beyond the traditional cidery license, and may offer tastings of, and sell not only cider, but also beer, wine, and spirits made from New York products.
Jim Allen, President of the New York Apple Association, said, “Farm cideries represent a tremendous growth opportunity for New York’s apple industry and will make our ciders stand out on their own nationwide. This legislation will open the door for a new growing category and provide even more markets for New York State apples. I congratulate Nine Pin Cider Works on being the first of many licensed farm cideries to come.”