Snapshot: Warren Cider Works
Spencer Morris crafts hard cider from orchard to glass.
Spencer Morris remembers, as a kid, running under the apple trees at his grandparents’ orchard in the Hudson Valley. Someday, he’d have an orchard of his own. The question was, Morris says, “How do you add value to a food crop? It’s difficult to make money just doing apples.” Enter: hard cider. For the last seven years, Morris — who also owns a manufacturing business in Warren — has grown high-tannin, cider-friendly apples on land in the Touisset neighborhood. “Initially, my interest was to explore old American heirloom apples, particularly regional ones,” he says.
He presses his apples in the fall — some blends, some single batches such as Rhode Island Greening and Wickson crab apples — and ferments them in the cellar of his Warren storefront, which he opened last fall. He serves the finished product in a tasting room anchored by a Victorian-era bar. It’s an imperfect process; he’s tossed batches gone rogue during fermentation and he’s still gauging his customers’ preferences against his own (dry, natural bubbles, no sulfites). “This is sort of what’s fun about it,” Morris says. “Every year, there will be some point of excellence. But it’s always unpredictable.” 98 Child St., Warren, warrenciderworks.com