Hard cider is best made from heritage varieties of apples and can be very unique (and delicious). The transformation of the apple industry and its move to only a small homogeneous selection of sweet apples is interesting and explained very well by Michael Pollan in The Botany of Desire. Cideries like Albemarle Ciderworks are bringing back American varieties of apples that were used by Jefferson and the founding fathers to make America's beverage of choice, cider. And I love Mr. Jefferson. So, cider that was good enough for him, is certainly good enough for me.
The other thing I love about cider is that it is perfect for fall and often inspires festivals. Consider attending some apple harvest festivals this season, like those at Albermarle Ciderworks.