Cider season: 12 places you can find hot cider, hard cider and more in Charlotte

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Photo via @SmellyCatCoffeehouse

Nothing beats warming up with a mug of hot cider on a winter day. Or do you prefer your cider cold, no matter the weather?

Rest assured, you can get your cider fix in several forms this time of the year. From non-alcoholic and spiked hot cider to hard cider, the Charlotte area is chock-full of irresistible options:

Amelie’s

Multiple locations

 

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What to order: Salted Caramel Apple Cider
Price: $4.06
What’s in it: cider, salted caramel, salt, topped whipped cream
Why you should try it: Take some time to relax during the busy holidays in one of Amelie’s unique locations while you sip on some of their salted caramel apple cider. While you’re at it, you might as well get at least one salted caramel brownie, macaroon or macaron.

Apple Hill Orchard & Cider Mill

2075 Pleasant Hill Ave., Morganton

What to order: Apple Hill Orchard Cider
Price: $3.99/half gallon, $6.49/gallon, $1.75 or $3/cider slushie, $1.75/hot cider
What’s in it: Apple Hill Orchard apples and their perfected combination of spices results in their award-winning, sweet cider.
Why you should try it: Enjoy a cup of cider that is hot, cold or even a slushie while you are at the orchard. Then take home a gallon or half gallon to have at home with your loved ones.

*bakery closes December 22, store closes December 24

Crema Espresso Bar & Cafe

1235 East Blvd. B

 

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What to order: Hot Cider
Price: $3.79/medium
What’s in it: Apple cider, all spice, cinnamon, clove, lemon peel, orange peel and orange oil
Why you should try it: Their hot apple cider hits all the cider flavor notes. You can even enjoy it in an apple cider mimosa ($5). Try pairing the cider with their Omega crepe ($8.75), which has has goat cheese, avocado, walnuts, mushrooms, spinach and basil pesto.

Dot Dot Dot*

4237 Park Road B

 

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What to order: Carolina Apple Cider
Price: $12
What’s in it: Laird’s Applejack, Buck Bourbon, local apple cider, clove, cinnamon; served tall.
Why you should try it: This cocktail has all the cider flavors. Enjoy it with a cheese board ($18) featuring the chef’s selection of artisan cheeses.

*Dot Dot Dot is a members-only speakeasy. A membership costs $10/year.

Futo Buta

222 E. Bland St.

 

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What to order: Hot Ringo
Price: $9
What’s in it: hot cider, ginger and hot sake
Why you should try it: Warm yourself inside out with some ramen and this spiked ginger apple cider. The sake is a welcome variation on the standard spiked cider.

GoodRoad Ciderworks

117 Southside Dr.

 

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What to order: Hot Mulled Cider
Price: $6
What’s in it: GoodRoad Ciderworks has two versions of their mulled cider. One has their apple juice with seasonal spices, including cinnamon. The hot mulled cider that contains alcohol includes their Newtown Pippin Cider (6.9% ABV).
Why you should try it: Cozy up with their hot mulled cider, complete with a cinnamon rim. While you are there through January, try the Cranberry Crossroads or any of their other locally crafted meads or ciders.

Mugs

5126 Park Rd. #1d

What to order: Apple Cider
Price: $2.79/small, $3.39/medium, $3.79/large
What’s in it: apple cider, cinnamon, caramel and whipped cream

Why you should try it: Sip on this seasonal classic while you get some work done or are on the move. If you’re craving traditional cider, you have found it here.

Red Clay Ciderworks

245 Clanton Road

 

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What to order: Wool Socks
Tasting Notes: This cold cider is slightly sweet. It has a spiced bouquet and finish. The black currant, orange peel, cinnamon and other spices bring everything together.
Why you should try it: The seasonal flavors in Wool Socks make it an ideal cider for the winter. Also try their hot, spiked cider at the Charlotte Christmas Village through Christmas Eve.
ABV: 6.0%

Smelly Cat

514 E. 36th St.

What to order: Caramel Apple Cider
Price: $2.50/small, $3/medium, $3.50/large
What’s in it: apple juice, all spice and house-made caramel sauce
Why you should try it: Their caramel apple cider has the perfect hint of caramel. You can also ask for caramel syrup instead of caramel sauce if you want to make your drink dairy free.

Undercurrent Coffee

2012 Commonwealth Ave.

 

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What to order: Hot Cider
Price: $5.25
What’s in it: Perry Lowe Orchards cider, spices and coconut oat whipped cream
Why you should try it: This hot cider is made with the freshest ingredients and the coconut oat whipped cream only elevates it further.

Wild Blossom Cider

2161 Hawkins St.

What to order: Brut
Tasting Notes: This crisp, dry, sparkling cider is light in body with an apple finish. This gluten-free beverage is reminiscent of a Champagne but has fewer calories, carbs and sugar.
Why you should try it: This cider, crafted with Pacific NW apples, lets you avoid the guilt. It’s the perfect time to enjoy something delicious without piling on more heavy calories!
ABV: 5.5%

Windy Hill Orchard and Cider Mill

1860 Black Highway, York, South Carolina

 

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What to order: Rusty Gold
Tasting Notes: This cider is infused with cinnamon, nutmeg, orange peel, cloves and star anise.
Why you should try it: While you are there, try a sampler flight ($13) with six hard ciders. Be sure to grab some hot apple cider donuts while you are at it ($10/dozen). You can bring home everything you need to make an apple cider mimosa: Substitute Champagne with their Ginger Gold Hard Cider ($10) and add their spiced cider, Wassail ($12). You can also take home the Rusty Gold ($10), which is incredibly popular around the holidays.
ABV: 6%

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