Hopped Apricot – Salt Spring Wild Cider House (Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada)

Hopped Apricot – Salt Spring Wild Cider House, 6.8% ABV, 750 ml., (Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada) (*local BC cider*)


-The 2nd Salt Spring Wild bottled tasting, 1st being their Plum Cider [C].


on the front-left label and a pic of an Italian prune plum:

“We’ve blended cascade hops, apricots, and organic apples together to create an aromatic cider that challenges conceptions of what cider can be. Both cider lovers and beer lovers will find a perfect union in this flavourful hefeweizen-esque all season cider.”

(left)


  • Style: (flavoured – apricot, cascade hops) Apple Cider
  • Taste: Crisp tangy tart dry apple grapefruit hopped subtle apricot
  • Where I got it : Brewery Creek / Vancouver
  • How much: $16.15 CAD (after 10% off) – 750ml., March 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: yes

Visual: Bailer-top resealable cap. Pours clear apple juice yellow, no head, very slow and steady countable spread out micro streams.

Nose: muscat, filtered apple juice, slight perfumey apricot. (lvl-4)-pungency

Attack: firm crisp, bright fruity impression

Mid-palate: micro-tingly, (lvl-2-sweetness), background tangy-soft tart, dry apple juice, juicy grapefruit hopped exhale

Finish: lingering apricot, residual fruity dry apple

Summary: I really appreciate that you can ACTUALLY taste hops and apricots. Good integration and balance of flavours, very nice transitions. Solid stuff, and better than their plum cider.

Black Sam Licorice Stout – Lighthouse Brewing Co. (Victoria, BC, Canada)

Black Sam Licorice Stout – Lighthouse Brewing, 7.2% ABV, 650 ml., (Victoria, BC, Canada) (*local BC Craft beer*)


on the front-right label:

“With an aroma of roasted malt and nighttime, this pitch black stout has flavours of rich maltiness, molasses sweetness, dark chocolate, and a delicate note of Licorice.”

(right)


  • Style: (flavoured – Licorice) Stout
  • Taste: Sweet molasses light roast barley malt mild coffee dark chocolate licorice
  • Where I got it : Liquor Barn / N. Bby
  • How much: $8 (after 10% off) – 650ml., December 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: 50/50

Visual: (cellared for 1.5 years). Pours coffee black with no head, almost no retention, scatter micro bubbles surfacing.

Nose: caramelized barley malt, cocoa, slight roast (lvl-8)-pungency

Attack: crisp, sweet dark barley malt impression

Mid-palate: (lvl-6-sweetness), molasses, medium roasted barley, coffee,

Finish: dark chocolate, licorice, sweet roasted barley malt exhale

Summary: Overall clean and well-bodied. It lacks creaminess but makes for up for it with a crisp bite up front. Smooth transitions of flavours from start to finish.

The Four Surfers of the Apocalypso – Le Trou du Diable (Shawinigan, QC, Canada)

The Four Surfers f the Apocalypso (aka Apocalypso) – Le Trou du Diable, 6.5% ABV, 600ml., (Shawinigan, Quebec, Canada)


on the back label:

“Apocalypso is a veiled beer that perfectly combines the elegance of Belgian whites with the complex, hoppy character of American IPAs. Topped with a generous head, it features aromas of resin, candy, litchi, and pear. Its smooth palate is like a long lasting wave of piny bitterness just asking to be ridden.

Ingredients: water, malted wheat, malted barley, hops, yeast.

(back)


  • Style: (wheat) White IPA
  • Taste: Litchi fruity grainy smooth balanced subtle lengthy bitter
  • Where I got it : Legacy Liquor / Vancouver
  • How much: $8.70 (after 10% off) – 600ml., November 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: 50/50

Visual: (Their own bottle for their brewery, raised lettering and devil on the bottom, odd size 600ml). (Cellared for 2 years). Pours mildly hazy pale orange with lots of suspended sediment, a small 1cm slowly dissipating head, a thin layer of frothy retention, tight dense clusters of steady streams.

Nose: bright litchi, slight resiny wheat malt (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: thicker-creamy crisp, bright grainy impression

Mid-palate: stealth soft bitter hops, (lvl-3-sweetness), grainy-prickly palate, litchi wheat malt, mild pear, bittersweet barley malt

Finish: lingering soft lengthy bitter hopped

Summary: Quite an interesting litchi-pear wheat malt IPA – Big engaging brightness mixed with a persistent yet nuanced hopped bitterness. My kind of an extremely drinkable IPA

Apple Pear Wine 2008 – Rustic Roots Winery (Cawston, BC, Canada)

Apple Pear Wine 2008 (apple cider and plum wine blend) – Rustic Roots Winery, 12.0% ABV, 750 ml., (Cawston, BC, Canada


description from the Rustic Roots website:

“This fresh crisp acidic wine has deceiving aromas of sweet baked apples with a surprisingly big midpalate with a dry and fresh palate of green apples, quince, spice and a touch of pineapple.  Made with 5 Varieties of Organic Similkameen Apples (Ambrosia, Gala, Macintosh, HoneyCrisp, Golden) and 3 Varieties of Organic Similkameen Pears (D’Anjou, Bartlett and Comice) This wine mimics an Unoaked Chardonnay with a bit of a Gewurztraminer, with its fresh green apple, pear, spice and pineapple nuances.”


  • Style: Apple-Pear Wine
  • Taste: Fruity juicy off-dry tangy mild tannic green/red apple mild pear hints of spice-pineapple
  • Where I got it : Liberty Wines (?) / Vancouver
  • How much: $22 CAD – 750ml., sometime in 2010
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to fruit wine aficionados: not raving

Visual: (cellared for 9 years). Pours clear light golden yellow, pristine clarity.

Nose: apple juice with a some dank woody peel, slight pear influence. (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: bright fruity entry, juicy dry apple impression

Mid-palate: (lvl-3-sweetness), tangy juicy acidity, slightly dank apple wine, green apple, woody apple peel

Finish: hints of cinnamon/nutmeg spice, perfumey pear-red apple exhale, off-dry palate, pineapple notes.

Summary: It has the advertised flavours, solid quality and composition. The fruitiness helps offset the dryness and together they create an appetizing and sippable combo. All around clean, medium body, good complexity and transitions.

Dark Farmhouse – Microbrasserie Le Castor (Rigaud, QC, Canada)

Dark Farmhouse (organic beer) – Microbrasserie Le Castor., 6% ABV, 500ml., (Rigaud, Quebec, Canada)


on the back label:

Brewed with malted barley & wheat, this dark farmhouse ale is fermented with a blend of Saccharomyces & Brettanomyces yeasts. Spicey & piney hop varieties complement subtle roast & tobacco character derived from dark specialty malts. Fermented very dry with wild yeast, this Saison will pair well with a variety of robust foods including grilled meats, strong cheeses and spicey Asian cuisine.


  • Style: (dark) Saison
  • Taste: Tangy bright roasted barley slight funk subtle bitter
  • Where I got it : High Point / Vancouver
  • How much: $9.90 CAD (after 20% off) – 500ml., October 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to beer aficionados: a interesting brew

Visual: Pours beer bottle dark brown with a small 1mm super long-lasting foamy head, scattered singular tight steady micro streams.

Nose: light peaty-rubbery smoked malts, background brightness. (lvl-6)-pungency

Attack: dry crisp, brown sugar malt impression

Mid-palate: light tingly (lvl-2-sweetness), background subtle tangy, slight funk’d dry roasted barley malt

Finish: coriander-mild piney subtle bitter, residual grainy wheat malts.

Summary: A really interesting beer combining the light and dark; Bright saison wheatness with the roasted barley – very good transitions and flawless integration. Can’t say I’ll have another but I’m glad I had this one.

Valient Jubilee Sweet Red Wine – Rossignol Estate Winery (PEI, Canada)

  • My Rating: [C+]

Valient Jubilee Sweet Red Wine – Rossignol Estate Winery, 12% ABV (now listed as 11% ABV, 5/2017) – 750 ml., (Murray River, Prince Edward Island, Canada)


description from the Rossignol website:

“Deliciously rich and concentrated with loads of wild grape taste. Our hardy, estate-grown Valient [sic] grapes yield a fragrant juicy cocktail wine to be enjoyed alone or over ice with a twist of lemon”


  • Style: (Sweet) Red Wine
  • Taste: Sweet juicy concord-grapey tangy alcholic tart gums
  • Where I got it : ordered from their website/phone
  • How much: $21 CAD (after S&H) – 750 ml., March 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to wine aficionados: no

Visual: Non-vintage, cellared for 5 years. Pours a very dark reddish-purple, slow thick legs.

Nose: juicy deep and rich Welch/concord grape juice, background tangy acidity (lvl-4)-intensity

Attack: medium tart, sweet grape juice impression

Mid-palate: (lvl-5-sweetness), concord grape juice, raisiny alcohol, big juicy-controlled tart, tangy-zingy acidity, sangria-ish

Finish: tart gums, slight concord grapey exhale.

Summary: Valiant grape, a first for me tasting this varietal. More info here, it seems this type of sweet grape is well-suited for making jam and juice due to its deep rich flavour. This drinks like a sweet and tangy alcoholic grape juice with decent depth, easy going and quite approachable. It would be interesting on the rocks or in a cocktail, as suggested on the Rossignol website.

Full Moon Kerner Icewine 2005 – Sonoran Estate Winery (Summerland, BC, Canada)

  • My Rating: [B-]

Full Moon Kerner Icewine 2005 – Sonoran Estate Winery, 13.6% ABV, 200 ml., (Summerland, BC, Canada) (*local BC wine*)


on the back label:

“The grapes for this delicious Ice Wine were harvested in Eric VonKrosigk’s vineyard by the light of a full moon. Rich honey, peaches and apricot aromas blaanced with flavours of lychee and pear. Hints of fresh mandarin oranges and citrus linger on the finish…”


  • Style: (Kerner) Icewine
  • Taste:
  • Where I got it : Liquor Depot / N. Burnaby
  • How much: $35, sometime in 2010
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to dessert wine aficionados:

Visual: (cellared for 12 years, 2005 bottle). Composite cork with hard wax top, still intact. Pours

Nose: tangy syrupy grape-plum, hints of toffee. (lvl-6)-pungency

Attack: slight thicker

Mid-palate: sweet crisp-tangy acidity, (lvl-7-sweetness), apricot, lychee, honey, peach, subdued alcohol

Finish: subtle throat warmth, red apple exhale, lingering apricot notes,

Summary: Quite juicy and complex flavourful, well done for a 13.6%. Wishing for more length in the mids and more flavour on the side palates. I like this more than their 13 Moons Oraniensteiner [C+].