Downeast Cider continues to extend its reach from the East Coast to the West Coast in the U.S., building a following for a growing niche in the specialty hard cider market: “unfiltered” cider. In fact, Downeast, launched by brothers Ross and Matt Brockman, is the original unfiltered cider.
"When our three founders got together to launch Downeast, they decided on a few basics to differentiate the product," says Pete McCoubrey, Downeast Product and Brand Marketing. "Five fresh apples go into every 12 oz. can. And it was determined that filtering them out would mean filtering out flavour. So, as our leaders like to say, we leave the good stuff in there."
Downeast customers agree as demand for the popular cider continues to increase with an increasing slate of offerings that include core brands Original Blend, Double Blend and White joining seasonal offerings such as Grapefruit, Aloha Friday and Winter Blend. These products are available at high-end beer and wine retail outlets and Kroger stores across 12 U.S. states, including New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Philadelphia, Minnesota, Colorado, California and the New England area.
The brand’s reach is just starting, with growth supported by the choice to package Downeast ciders in Ardagh 12 oz. aluminum cans. "Cans provide excellent distribution and retail economics," Pete says. "We’re able to ship and stack product more efficiently. We’re also able to preserve the integrity of ingredients in our cider as cans provide a superior light and oxygen barrier."
And, according to Claude Marbach, CEO, Ardagh Metal – North America, the choice of cans also supports Downeast’s sustainability targets. “Cans are currently recycled at a much higher rate here in the U.S. and contain more recycled content than other beverage pack types,” he says. “We’re proud to support Downeast in its brand and bottom-line objectives, as well as enabling the company to strengthen its environmental platform.”
In addition to Downeast Cider being available at select retail outlets, the company also has a taproom in East Boston, where tours are available, enabling the cider connoisseur to taste what’s on draft and explore what’s new in flavours and research and development.