Pressing cider on Thanksgiving

Several days ago, when invited by friends to join them at Thanksgiving, we declined because of the weather forecast. It was supposed to be clear with a high in the 50s. It came true. We had a high of 56°F today, and we stayed home. My wife planted garlic (she needed to because she is way behind schedule) and I got out our Happy Valley Ranch cider press. Made just under 4 gallons. We didn’t have a large supply of apples. I used a few of our own apples but had to rely on nearby orchards. Four varieties made up the bulk: Tompkins King, Northern Spy, Red Spy, and McIntosh. Supplementing them were Empire, Ida Red, Ashmead’s Kernal, Dyer, Macoun, and Jonagold.

I’ve never pressed cider this late in the year or on Thanksgiving Day itself. It felt good. It has been such a crazy year that this was the first time this season that I’ve pressed cider.

I had some clean up help from the chickens.


bet they loved the scraps.


Another advantage to cidering around Thanksgiving — there are no yellow jackets.