David DeFisher’s great-grandparents came to New York State from Holland over 110 years ago. Today, what was once a few acres in Wayne County, has expanded to over 500 acres in the largest apple producing county in the United States.
You may know DeFisher Fruit Farms for their famous Haunted Hayrides of Greater Rochester, which has been in existence for over 18 years. In fact, chances are you are one of more than 20,000 people annually who have dared to take the ride. But with an abundance of fresh fruit on the farm — DeFisher Fruit Farm’s annually grows over 6 million lbs of apples — DeFisher wanted to find a way he could make something from it, instead of just passing it on or riding through it.
As a result, with a commitment to respecting the craft and traditions and commitment to quality, DeFisher founded Apple Country Spirits and Rootstock Ciderworks in 2012 becoming the first farmstead distillery and cidery in the greater Rochester region.
This year, Rootstock Ciderworks will more than double their production of cider made with just two ingredients: apples or pears and yeast. What we here at Hart’s love most of all is that every apple or pear comes right off the farm and is freshly pressed, creating a truly local, all-natural product through and through.
This past April, Rootstock received the news that every cider they entered into the Great Lakes International Cider & Perry Competition won a medal, despite competition from ciders from around the world. We’re lucky to have an award-winning cidery just 20 minutes from Rochester and to be carrying their Perry Hard Cider, Heritage Hard Cider, Original Hard Cider and Legend Hard Cider right here at Hart’s!Love cider as much as we do? Mark your calendars for Cider Week FLX, the first week of October. Rochester will have some great events including a cider pairing dinner at Lento Restaurant as well as events at Mullers Cider House, Joe Bean Coffee Roasters, NOX, The Revelry, and Tap & Mallet. Get the details.