Imagine the taste of an apple. Sweet. Crisp. Sweet some more. You might think appley sugar is a necessary component of hard cider. But Stoic Cider, produced by the Routson clan and led by biologist Kanin Routson, turns out ultra-small-batch apple ciders so bereft of sugar they seem to wick moisture from your mouth. Stoic Cider reimagines what apple cider can be — tamping down sweetness, sharpening carbonation, and multiplying funk. The Routsons have elevated Arizona cider to a new, strange, beautiful, almost Champagne-like plane, and one that's different from bottle to bottle. At their on-farm cidery near Prescott, they ferment using unusual, well-considered apple varieties from across the American West. They also grow arcane apples on their farm, and even make spellbinding micro cider batches from wild fruit.