Wassail – Sea Cider (Saanichton, BC, Canada)

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Wassail – Sea Cider., 16% (now 14%) ABV, 750ml, (Saanichton, BC, Canada) (*local BC craft cider*)

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from the seacider.ca website:

Waes Hail! To your health! Spiced with orange peel and star anise (now cloves), our Wassail spiced cider harkens back to the wassailing tradition of drinking spiced cider and singing to the apple orchard. This scared away evil spirits to ensure a bountiful harvest. Raise a glass of Wassail to good health, a good harvest, and good cider!

The Story: 

Sea Cider’s Owner Kristen was inspired to create a traditional winter warming cider that embodied all the traditional Wassail characteristics and leant itself to the traditions of wassailing. Wassailing refers to drinking and singing to the health of an orchard. An ancient practice from southern England that’s still performed at Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse today. The purpose of wassailing is to awaken the cider apple trees and scare away evil spirits ensuring a good harvest. Wassailing also refers to the tradition of raising a glass with good friends and neighbours in celebration of the season.”

Tasting Notes:

Appearance: Rich amber, gently effervescent
Aromas, flavours: Candied orange peel, caramel apple, hints of clove, cinnamon and nutmeg
Acid/sweetness: Semi-sweet, good acid balance
Mouthfeel: Smooth, long finish

Food Pairings:

This winter warmer is perfect just as is, or paired with your favourite seasonal dishes. The candied orange peel, caramel apple aromas and flavours, and hints of clove and cinnamon make this perfect for pairing with sausages, sausage meat stuffing, roasted pork, duck and of course turkey. A great fit for all your traditional sides too: garlic mashed potatoes, braised winter vegetables, and roasted turnips. The spices ensure it’s also ideal with strong cheeses, apple pie, apple crisp, pumpkin pie and of course Figgy Pudding.


  • Style: (orange peel, star anise – spiced) Apple Cider
  • Taste: Big star anise cinnamon candied orange peel spiced apple juice tangy sour
  • Where I got it : Legacy Liquor / Vancouver
  • How much: $16.50 CAD (after 10% off) – 750ml., March 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: definitely

Visual: (old labeling prior to 2015, cellared for 4 years). Pours clear orange amber with no head, lots of slow and steady micro streams.

Nose: big clove aroma with cinnamon and orange peel. (lvl-9)-pungency

Attack: crisp, thicker mouthfeel

Mid-palate: light fizzy, star anise, alcohol zing and mild heat, fruity (lvl-7-sweetness), apple juice backbone, cinnamon, tangy sour candied orange

Finish: residual sticky sugars, apple juice & star anise exhale.

Summary: Lots of spices augment the clean apple backbone in this one, making it quite an interesting cider. It drinks something like a mead but lighter 0n the palate, especially at the finish. Beautiful aroma.