Blake’s Hard Cider in South Carolina, Better than Windy Hill Orchard?


In this article we are reviewing Windy Hill Orchard and Cider comparing to Blake’s Hard Cider.

First, if you haven’t had a chance to visit our website yet, we strongly recommend you do so if you’re interested in enjoying some of the best hard cider we have to offer to date and visit your local Kroger and Meijer grocery store near you.


But what makes Windy Hill Orchard stand out for us is how they got started with a simple dream and desire to create good cider and donuts for their family. Then word got out about how good their donuts and cider was and, seemingly with no effort of their own began selling like hot cakes (pun intended).

Read more of their awesome story below:

Windy Hill Orchard and Cidery – Humble Beginnings 

Fritz and Catherine Gusmer grew up on apple cider in New Jersey. Then on one Christmas day after moving to South Carolina in 1978, Fritz’ mother gave them a wooden apple cider press. The Gusmers’ and their children spent many a day, laughing, playing and making cider.

Fritz was searching for something he could involving the whole family and allowing him to stay close to home. The journey for a TRUE apple cider doughnut finally gave them the solution. They could grow apples, press cider and make the doughnuts they’d been craving. Windy Hill Orchard and Cider Mill was born.

One taste of an original hot apple cider doughnut and you will understand the quest that led to this business. Those in the know started coming the first week of September for the hot, fresh doughnuts.

They’ve been able to support their family for decades since for simply sharing their love and passion for good food, tasty deserts and great cider.

They have several hard cider options including Strawberry Pippin’, ReVah, Gala Peach, Hoppin Johnson and Rusty Gold and Ginger Gold.

Below are brief descriptions of their hard cider selections:


Rusty Gold Hard Cider  

According to their label it says, “A spiced cider with a subtle hint of cinnamon, nutmeg and orange peel is one of our most popular styles. Made with the same blend of spices that we have used to make our wassail for over 20 years. Tastes like Christmas in a glass.”

Gala Peach Hard Cider 

According to their label it says, “A salute to the local peach industry, this slightly sweet cider is blend of our hard cider and local peach juice. Back-sweetened to bring out the fresh peach flavor, this cider is also excellent served over ice.”

Strawberry Pippin 

“Once a seasonal limited release, we now offer this Cider year round. Featuring strawberry juice, blended in prior to fermentation, this cider ranges from dry to semi-sweet”

ReVah Pomegranate 

“Initially produced exclusively for a wine importer from Armenia, this is not your typical Hard Cider. Pomegranate juice blended with our Hard Cider produces a dark and cloudy Cider with a hint of tartness.”

Hoppin Johnny 

“The first commercially produced Dry-Hopped Hard Cider made on the East Coast! With floral aromas and citrus flavors, this is one of our favorite Hard Ciders. Made with whole leaf hops grown on our farm!”

Ginger Gold 

“The Original! We have been producing this Cider with apples from our orchard since 1996,. Our take on a English Style Cider, fermented with ginger for a refreshing finish.”


We love small up-and-coming cider mills like Windy Hill Orchard getting their big break into the hard cider market. We welcome them with open arms because the more of us simple farmers are out there offering our products to the masses, the more exposure we all get and the more people ultimately who visit our farms for the total experience.

Let’s face it. We live in a digital age. Everyone is accessible on facebook, twitter, instagram, YouTube and the like, but there was a time when family and friends gathered together at our farms to enjoy the scenery, views, smells and deliciousness of fresh, hot donuts fresh out the oven over a glass of (hard) cider.

So what makes Blake’s Hard Cider different? 

Every cider mill we know of has their own character, story and unique background that resonates with all walks of life.

We’re as unique as you are from everyone else on this beautiful, green Earth.

Here just a few selections we offer nationally in stores as well as in our very own cidery location: Flannel Mouth, El Chavo, Beard Bender, WakeFire, Cider Dayze, Catawampus, El Chapo, Aurora, Wayward Winter, Apple Lantern, The Tonic, Snap Dragon, Cyser and our signature series, Wassail, Chapeau Brun, Sante and Amshire.

What Blake’s Hard Cider Co. little differently is bring our selections into your local grocery store for you to enjoy from the comfort of your home with family and friends so you don’t have to travel a distance to get your favorite cider.

You can find us in your local Krogers and Meijers store


We’d love to invite you to come visit us at 17985 Armada Center Rd. Armada, MI 48005, give us a call at 586-784-9463 or shoot us an email at: if you have any questions or inquiries and check out our website for more exciting product updates and news releases!

Until next time, my friend, have a glass on us.

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