Difference between Cider and Wine

Updated on June 27, 2018

Cider and wine are popular beverages around the globe. Although both are made from fruits, they are far from being interchangeable.

Summary Table

CiderWine
Produced by crushing or fermenting applesProduced by fermenting grapes
Main types: cider and hard ciderMain types: red wine, white wine, and rosé wine
Either alcoholic or non-alcoholicTypically contains alcohol
Average alcohol content by volume of hard cider: 3% to 8%Average alcohol content by volume: 9% to 12%
Appearance: Cloudy or clearAppearance: Not cloudy
Color: Colorless or brownishColor: red, white, or pinkish
Distinct for its sweet apple flavorDistinct for its bitter flavor but is also available in sweet variants
Semi-dry to dry textureSemi-dry to dry texture
Used in the production of alcoholic beverages or vinegarConsumed as an alcoholic beverage

Descriptions

Cider variants

Cider is a popular beverage made by either crushing or fermenting apples. It is typically used to make vinegar and carbonated drinks.

Red wine, white wine, and rosé wine

Meanwhile, wine is an alcoholic beverage made by fermenting grapes or other types of flowers and fruits.

Cider vs Wine

Since they are completely different beverages, it is not difficult to tell the difference between cider and wine.

Main Ingredient

Cider is produced by pressing, crushing, or fermenting apples. The traditional fruit used to produce wine, on the other hand, is grapes.

Types

Cider exists in two main forms: cider and hard cider. While the former is made by crushing or pressing apples, the latter is produced by fermenting cider. Wine, by contrast, always requires the process of fermentation. The main types of wine include rosé wine, red wine, and white wine.

Alcohol Content

An important difference between the two is their alcoholic content. Most types of wine contain a small percentage of alcohol, while cider is not always alcoholic. The average alcohol by volume of wine ranges from 9% to 12%, while the alcohol by volume of hard cider (which is considered an alcoholic drink) is around 3% to 8%.

Appearance

Due to filtering processes between pressing or fermentation, cider beverages exist in different colors and levels of clarity. Cider can go from cloudy to clear, and it is available in colorless or brownish shades. Aside from filtration, the changes in the color of cider variants greatly depend on the apple varieties used during the manufacturing process.

Wine, by contrast, is not cloudy in nature. Although the colors of wine variants depend on the main fruit used for fermentation, the three main types of wine are red, yellow-gold, and pinkish in color. During red wine production, the grape skin is incorporated in the fermentation process, which explains why it bears a luscious red or violet color. Rosé wine, which is prominent for its pale orange or pinkish color, is produced by staining some of the grape skin into the wort. White wine, on the other hand, achieves its yellow-gold color by using non-colored grape pulp for fermentation.

Taste and Texture

Since they are produced from different types of fruits, cider and wine have notable differences in terms of taste. Cider is distinct for its sweet apple flavor that greatly complements its semi-dry to dry texture. Meanwhile, wine, which is prominent for its bitter flavor and semi-dry to dry texture, also comes in sweet variants that have citrus or floral notes, depending on the main fruit and the flavoring used during the manufacturing process.

Use

Cider can be used in the production of alcoholic beverages or vinegar. Wine, on the other hand, is an alcoholic drink used for direct consumption.

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