Samuel Smith’s Organic Cider. City: Tadcaster, England. ABV: 5%. Sweet or dry: Perfectly balanced. Tastes Like: What I imagine hard apple cider should taste like. The Verdict: Leave it to one of England’s most beloved breweries to make the stand-out cider. It tastes like a refined adult beverage instead of a kid’s juice box, with just enough sweetness to go down easy.
Woodchuck Amber Draft Cider City: Middlebury, Vt. ABV: 5% Sweet or dry: Slightly sweet Tastes Like: The best grocery-store cider The Verdict: The best of the mass-produced ciders, Woodchuck’s Amber tones down the typical juice-box quality of its peers.
Ace Pumpkin Hard Cider. City: Sebastopol, Calif. ABV: 5% Sweet or dry: Balanced Tastes Like: Pumpkin bread The Verdict: Cinnamon and nutmeg flavors work surprisingly well with the apple cider base, making this a standout fall beverage.