Tracker Pixel for Entry

Cottonwood Cider House rules

by HPR Contributor | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | Beer Snob | June 20th, 2018

By Ben Myhre
benmyhre35@gmail.com

How lucky we are in the FM area that we have so many craft breweries, but did you know that we also have two cider houses? Cottonwood Cider House is one of those cider houses and is just a short drive from Fargo outside of Ayr, North Dakota. While you can find their delicious ciders on tap in several Fargo venues, the Ayr cider house also gives an opportunity to get out of the town and see a unique area attraction. Today, we are going explore Cottonwood Cider House, the apple orchard behind it, and the people who operate it.

There are a few really unique things about Cottonwood Cider House that make it worth a taste and drive out to the Ayr location. A short walk from the cider house is Cottonwood Farm, which houses North Dakota’s largest commercial apple orchard and provides apples for the cider. Dan Heising and Stacy Nelson-Heising, the brains behind Cottonwood Cider House, planted their first apple trees in 2012 and now have over 2,000 trees growing at Cottonwood Farm. While we are a state that is not particularly known for our apples, Dan and Stacy have managed to plant 40 different apple varieties on the farm with the specific purpose of making craft cider.

Cottonwood Cider House HistoryCottonwood Farm also has an interesting story that I think many North Dakotans can relate to. On the same plot of land where the apple orchard sits, Stacy’s great grandfather first worked the soil in the early 1900s. She is now the fourth generation to farm this land, but things have changed for them over the years. Originally, the farm was a grain farm like many others. Stacy’s father (Chuck Nelson) and grandfather (Norman Nelson) transitioned the farm from traditional farming techniques to become the county’s first certified organic farm.

Stacy’s father helped Stacy and Dan carry on their family tradition by transitioning the farm to become an apple orchard and cidery. The cider is delicious and I think that Cottonwood Farm and the cider house have such a great story. A story that both honors North Dakota heritage and shows their ability to adapt in a way that works for them.

I have a bit of a disclosure. I know Dan and Stacy. I have shared an interest in brewing with Dan for quite some time. Also, I keep honey bees at Cottonwood Farm. Beekeeping is only a hobby for me, but they were excited to have my bees out on the orchard. It has been a great pleasure to work in partnership with them. I can get a little bit of honey and be a part of helping my friends pollinate their trees. Oh, and I get to hang out at Cottonwood Cider House once a week or so.

The Cider
They have a wide variety of ciders. I have tasted sweet ciders, dry ciders, and some excellent ciders infused with other fruits. Last time I was out there, they were talking about planting a ridiculous number of rhubarb plants for next year. I am guessing rhubarb will be on the menu soon enough. While my wife and I tend to have different tastes in ciders, we both can find something we enjoy when we are at a Cottonwood Cider House tasting.

Where can you find them?
Depending on availability, you can find them at various locations in Fargo including Front Street Tap Room, Blackbird Woodfire, JL Beers, Happy Harry’s (by the bomber), Wild Terra, and other places throughout the state. You can stop by the Red River Market this summer where they will be selling by the bottle and glass. Finally, they have a physical cider house at the working cidery that you can visit or schedule an event at. Cottonwood Cider House is a place where you can see all the going on’s of North Dakota’s first cidery and largest commercial apple orchard. They have a website http://cottonwoodciderhouse.com/, you can reach them at Facebook, or the old fashioned method of giving them call at (701) 866-9913.

Cottonwood Cider House is a unique North Dakota product and destination. If cider is your thing or if you want to get out of town and see a unique offering to our area, I would recommend checking out Cottonwood Cider House.

Recently in:

By the time this article is published, all the major new outlets in the area will have reported on the May 30th protest in Fargo demanding change and justice after the needless killing of George Floyd, as well as its aftermath. …

by Sonja ThompsonDebra Ruh is the CEO and Founder of Ruh Global IMPACT, a consulting firm that strives to help clients amplify their impact and become disability inclusion leaders. She also serves as the Chair of the United…

Best Bets

Ladies Ag Night

by HPR Staff

Thursday, March 19, 4:30- 8 pm1609 19th Ave N, FargoCass County Soil Conservation District is hosting their annual Ladies’ Ag Night supper event. This event has a goal of bringing together multiple generations of women involved…

by Sofia Makarova and Massimo Sassi The global pandemic is an incredibly challenging time for many. Nearlyone in every three Americans’ jobs have been affected, whether a temporary layoff, a permanent job loss, or a reduction in…

The New Normal: The Senate Of The Living DeadIn the 1968 film classic The Night Of The Living Dead, the dead have come back to life and are marching through forests and farms looking for food. They look just like us except for the…

To say that this year’s Bartenders Battle was the best display of talent in the six years since its creation would be an understatement and a disservice to not only the bartenders who made it into the competition, but also the…

It goes without saying that Valentine’s Day is the most profitable of all the holidays and the one with the most tortured history, literally. It is confusing how an ancient Roman festival that involved sacrificing animals and…

Fargo obviously loves their classical music. Audiences have still turned out during the 2019-2020 season of the Sanford Masterworks Series performed by the Fargo-Moorhead Symphony Orchestra despite an unrelenting winter. That…

Well-deserved praise for writer-director Amy Seimetz’s efficient and provocative “She Dies Tomorrow” almost inevitably points to the film’s eerie timeliness as a metaphor for pandemic-inspired malaise and disequilibrium.…

This weekend, the 10th Annual Unglued Craft Fest will be held at the Plains Art Museum, featuring over 70 local and regional artists selling handmade items. Though most are Fargo-Moorhead residents, artists from Minneapolis, Sioux…

Theatre

Fargo Film Festival 2020

by HPR Contributor

by Dominic EricksonThis March, the Fargo Film Festival will celebrate its 20th year of entertaining die-hard cinephiles and casual moviegoers alike. The festival begins on March 17 and concludes March 21. The event is once again…

by Kris Gruberperriex1@gmail.comAdam Quesnell's last show at The Cellar beneath the Front Street Taproom in Fargo was in early September of 2018. He was embarking on a seminal move from Minneapolis to LA. As always, his comedy was…

by Jill Finkelsonjsfinkelson99@gmail.comFar North Spirits, located up in Hallock, MN, is the northernmost distillery in the lower 48. They may be young in the distillery world but the farm and the spirit reach far into the past.…

Wellness

Discover Yoga Differently

by HPR Contributor

by Laurie J Bakeremsdatter@gmail.com Part of modern yoga is participating in the world around us. We live in a time of upheaval in society and nature, and of great suffering in humans of all ages. Most of us perceive this suffering…

by Devin Joubertdevinlillianjoubert@gmail.comIt’s that beautiful time of the year that’s filled with seasonal decorations, sparkly lights, warm family gatherings, and delicious feasts. I love everything about this time of the…

“(Kafka’s) world knows no physical or moral order…We, the readers, are reliving our bad dreams…punishment is over all the characters, but the crime remains mysteriously hidden…” - William Hubben“The specter of color is…