Archive for the ‘Cider’ Category

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Day #284 – Woodchuck Pumpkin Cider

October 12, 2011

As you might have noticed last night, it is certainly Pumpkin beer season. Several companies come out with a pumpkin spice beer around this time of year and some of them are quite good. (see last night’s entry.) Tonight I’ve got a beer, well a cider that is pumpkin infused. I’ve never tried anything like it but I’m open to new ideas.

Woodchuck Pumpkin Cider

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Woodchuck is made by Green Mountain Cidery in Middlebury, Vermont. I haven’t reviewed anything from them so far, as I view them more of the Budweiser of ciders and not so much of a craft producer. I have never tried a pumpkin cider though before so I’ll give it a shot.

This cider pours a very clear orange color with a small fizzy white head. The head bubbles and disappears very quickly.

The aroma is faint pumpkin, some spice with a soapy type nose. Faint smell.

The flavor is interesting. Upfront is sugary and sweet, light spice and faint pumpkin. The finish is a little strange though, as it has almost an expired candy flavor. Meh I’m not feeling this.

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Cheers!

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Day #12 – Crispin Natural Hard Apple Cider Original

January 13, 2011

Now wait wait wait….I know what you’re thinking.  “What the heck man?  A freaken cider?  I thought this was a blog for reviewing beers!?!?”  Well it is….and it is more than that at the same time.  Allow me to explain.  Keep in mind that one of my primary goals for starting and maintaining this blog is to introduce readers to a variety of craft beers and viable alternatives to drinking colorless, tasteless beer.  Not everyone who reads this blog is an enormous fan of beer, which I am perfectly OK with.  I’ve talked with a few people that only drink beer when they have to, but for the most part do not enjoy it all that much.  After that they usually get discouraged with beer, turn to mixed drinks or worse….malternatives (think smirnoff ice, bacardi flavored beverages, ie.).

While a cider is technically not beer, it is not as far away from it as you might think.  They are both made with natural ingredients, both undergo a fermentation period induced by yeast, are natually carbonated and conditioned (or in a cider’s case sometimes are not carbonated) and have similar flavor characteristics.  I would liken a cider to be a cousin of beer, along with sake as well.  And while it doesn’t happen often, I can admit that sometimes I just don’t feel like having a beer.  At times like that, it’s nice to have options.

I will not make it a habit of reviewing non-beer styles but for today, here we go.

Crispin Natural Hard Apple Cider Original

This beer, er, cider is produced by the Crispin Cider Company out of Minneapolis, MN.  Their line of ciders very recently began distribution into north Texas as of this summer.  They also claim that their cider is best served over ice, and while I’m not entirely certain about how that positively affects the flavor, I know that ice masks aromas and flavors.  So perhaps there are some things they are trying to cover up?  I will review this without ice to see what I can discover.

As with all fruit based beers/ciders, they are properly served out of a flute glass.  I have just the one too.

You can see from the picture how clear this is.   It has an appearance of apple juice that is very clear and quite fizzy.  I poured the cider with a lot of agitation to get some head formation out of it, and it was very fizzy, like a sprite or some other form of carbonated soda.  The white, fizzy head disappeared just as quickly as it showed up; literally it was gone in a mere few seconds.  Small bubbles continue to rise from the bottom of the glass though.

Lots of fruit in the aroma.  I mainly pick up apple scents with perhaps a bit of dry pear.  The aroma is really pretty dry through and through, similar to how a white wine would present.  Some light tartness is also apparent on the nose, but nothing so far as to label “distasteful”.  So the ice is not to cover up any negative aromas.  Let’s see about the taste.

The taste is apple sweet right from the start.  Lots of natural fruit sugars hit the tongue and stay there for awhile.  A bit of tartness begins to creep in near the finish, and dries out on the aftertaste.  It really is like eating a green or yellow apple.  It’s not too tart, but has just enough to be interesting and refreshing.  I’m not sure what the deal is with ice as it’s obviously not to hide anything.  My guess is to be different/gimmicky.

Sometimes you need something different, and at 5% alcohol, this cider could easily provide it.

Cheers!