(UPDATED 3/24/2022) Description and review of Hemly Cider, an on-farm taproom and cider production facility located in Courtland, CA. NEW: See UPDATE below.
Our third stop on the SacTown Bites Taste of the Delta Tour was Hemly Cider, just down the road from the Greene & Hemly packing shed. Following directions, we drove slowly through the orchards to avoid kicking up dust (to protect the trees).
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We met Sarah Hemly, the founder of Hemly Cider, at “The Hanger”. The Hanger is an airplane hanger converted into an on-farm taproom and cider production facility. The production business was originally located in Lockeford, but recently moved to Courtland.
Sarah, who is married to Matt Hemly, founded Hemly Cider in 2015. She was inspired to form the company by the bounty of pears and apples produced in the Greene & Hemly orchards.
Outdoor Taproom Bar & Patio
Our small group gathered at the outdoor taproom bar. Sarah and an assistant served us a sampling of ciders (Original Pear Cider, Pink Lady Apple Cider, Sloughouse Jalapeno Pear Cider, Brute Pear Cider). The ABV of Hemly ciders range from 4.5 to 6.9.
Sarah discussed the history of cider, and as we sipped she described each cider in our flight. Designated drivers and others who opted out of the cider offerings were served estate-grown sparkling juice. Among other interesting tidbits, Sarah shared that Hemly Cider is partnering with other local farmers to source ingredients for their specialty (limited edition) ciders.
I found each of the ciders I sampled very tasty. My favorite was the Original Pear Cider (fermented with Bartlett and Bosc pears).
The outdoor patio/grassy area next to the taproom bar is very attractive, with tables and chairs scattered about. The site is adjacent to both orchards and fields of corn. Sarah shared that in the winter the harvested fields will fill with thousands of birds. That is a sight I would like to see!
After enjoying our beverages, Sarah led us into the production facility and explained the methods utilized to produce cider. After that, we stepped into the orchard adjacent to The Hanger to learn about pear production. We were also shown how one picks pears, and invited to pick one for ourselves. I enjoyed my bosc pear several days later for breakfast.
To sum up, at the end of our visit at Hemly Cider, we thanked Sarah for a most interesting and informative tour. We were all getting very hungry by that time, so we eagerly made our way to the next stop – Husick’s Taphouse.
(3/24/2022) Last year Sarah, President of Hemly Cider, entered the International Cider Competition at the Sagardo Forum in Spain’s Basque region. She came home with three metals for Hemly Cider:
- Gold for Brute Pear
- Silver for Chai Pear
- Bronze for Sloughhouse Jalapeno Pear
Interested in trying the three metal winners? Hemly Cider can be found around the Sacramento region at certain supermarkets and liquor stores, as well as a number of bars and restaurants.
Comments on Hemly Cider?
Have you visited the Hemly Cider on-farm taproom? What comments would you add?
Hemly Cider Snapshot:
- 12345 River Road, Courtland, CA 95615
- Open Friday – Sunday (11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.)
- No reservations required
- Outdoor taproom bar and patio seating
- Cider and light snacks available for purchase
- Picnics welcome
- Children and well-behaved dogs on a leash welcome (dogs allowed on the patio and runway – dogs NOT allowed in the orchard
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