Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > General Midwest Archive >
Aug 19, 2008 08:26 AM

Need to find apple cider with no preservatives around St. Louis

Hey folks, I am looking for cider this fall that doesn't have any of the typical yeast suppressing preservatives. I want to make hard cider and the tiniest amount of preservative makes fermentation impossible (in my experience). I called Eckerts and they said that they have outsourced their cider production so they can't sell me any raw stuff. I don't want apple juice from whole foods, I want about 5 gallons of fresh dark cider.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. If you drive up to Hardin, the Ringhausen facility may still squeeze their own. The barn is across the Illinois River bridge from the town proper. If you drive up via Grafton, it'll be on your left, just before Hardin.

    1 Reply
    1. re: lemons

      What is the Ringhausen facility? Do they have a website? Thanks

    2. It's basically a big barn that smells wonderful. I have no idea if they have a website. They've been growing apples for more than 50 years that I know of, and it's still family owned, or was the last I knew. Try Googling.

      1. You might call Tom Range at Breautigam Orchards outside Belleville, IL. (618-233-4059.) He also outsources it to a press I believe in Centralia but may have a bit more control over what happens to the product.

        3 Replies
        1. re: DetectDave

          Thanks to you both, I'll check them out. Keep the ideas coming, its almost cider season.

          1. re: squabbit

            There's a funny law that states apple cider must be pasteurized if it is going to cross from Illinois to Missouri. If pasteurization is not a problem, you can pick up Ringhausen cider from Tower Grove Market on Saturdays.

            There are other options to check out, all of which will be without preservatives. First is Blue Heron Orchard. Organic and really great tasting cider. Since it's not pasteurized, it will start fermentation quickly. I know they have a website, but I don't have the info handy on me.

            Next is Centennial. You can talk to them at the Maplewood Market on Wednesday or at Tower Grove on Saturday. Also not pasteurized and really tasty. They freeze their cider when they have excess, so it can be pretty handy to get to know Jean to find out what is in storage.

            I've never had Breautigam's cider, but I've had their other fruit which is really good. They are located on Hwy 15 in Illinois, so if nothing else, it's a great day trip with the benefit of getting some good cider.

            If you make the hard cider, would you mind posting a tutorial on one of the local forums ( or egullet? I would dig it, and I'm sure others would too.

            1. re: jpg

              I live right by Tower Grove, and go to the market all the time. I'll have to talk to the Centennial folks. Thanks very much. As far as the cider goes, I am not a pro. I made a three-gallon batch two years ago that came out unbelievably well (if I do say so myself). It is much easier (IMO) than brewing beer. Last year I found out the hard way that even a tiny amount of preservative makes for abortive cider. Looking forward to getting it right again this year. I am not familiar with stlbites or egullet, but if things go well I could post something. There is not much I know about the process that you couldn't pick up by skimming a home-brew book. With basic cider you essentially dump in extra sugar and yeast and walk away for a month.

        2. The original comment has been removed