Raven’s Moon Apple Blackberry Cider – Blue Moon Cider Worx (Courtenay, BC, Canada)

image

  • My Rating: [B]

Raven’s Moon Apple Blackberry Cider – Blue Moon Winery & Cider Worx, 9% ABV, 500ml., (Courtenay, BC, Canada)


on the back label:

“The night air brings a fresh, rich scent as the raven settles on a branch heavy with apples. Beneath the moon an apple thuds as it hits the ground. The Raven swoops down on black wings, tonight he feasts.

Wild blackberries signal the end of summer on Vancouver Island. Our artisan cider is crafted from a blend of BC heritage cider apples and island wild blackberries picked straight off the bush and warm from the sun.

What’s in the Worx you ask? Juice from freshly pressed heritage cider apples and wild blackberries, not from concentrate. No water or artificial flavours added.”

wp-1459769751643.jpg


  • Style:  (flavoured – Blackberry) Apple Cider
  • Taste: Deep BLACKBERRY tart TANGY acidic medium sour apple backbone
  • Where I got it : High Point / Vancouver
  • How much: $7.55 CAD (after 15% off) – 500ml, February 2016
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: yes

Visual: Pours beet purple with no head, several slow and steady singular streams.

Nose: blackberry/fieldberry juice (lvl-4)-pungency

Attack: crisp-tart, incoming dark berry

Mid-palate: big tangy-zingy, juicy (lvl-6-sweetness), acidic crisp bite, dissipating sourness, apple backbone, deep blackberry

Finish: residual tart and tangy, berry exhale, a bit cloying

Summary: Huge authentic juicy blackberry flavour with a solid apple backbone. Very nice depth, good balanced textures.

Rekorderlig Spiced Apple Hard Cider (Sweden)

image

  • My Rating: [C+]

Rekorderlig Spiced Apple Hard Cider (aka Rekorderlig Winter Cider) – brewed at Åbro Bryggeri, 4.5% ABV, 16.9 fl.oz., (Vimmerby, Sweden)

“Premium hard cider blended with cinnamon & vanilla. Made from pure Swedish spring water. Serve hot or cold.”


Ingredients: Hard Cider (Apple & Pear), Swedish Spring Water, Sugar, Aroma (Apple, Cinnamon, Vanilla), Citric Acid, Caramel Color, Acidity Regulator, Sulfites & Sorbate to protect flavor. Lightly carbonated.


  • Style: (flavoured – cinnamon, vanilla) Apple & Pear Cider
  • Taste: Heavy thick sweet sherry cherry chocolate alcoholic toffee molasses concentrated barley malt
  • Where I got it : BC Liquor Stores
  • How much: $5.75 CAD – 16.9 fl.oz., December 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: more for thirst quenching

Visual: Pours pale yellow with no head and lots of fast active streams.

Nose: artificial apple & pear candy, but still enticing. (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: crisp-quenching

Mid-palate: fruity candyesque apple-pear, sticky (lvl–sweetness), light cinnamon, light vanilla extract

Finish: cloying sugars, candy fruity exhale.

Summary: The taste is very candy-esque but for me that’s not a problem since I love candy. Still very drinkable and thirst quenching despite all the additives and preservatives, although you do taste the artificiality.

Somersby Citrus Fruit flavoured Cider (Denmark)

image

Somersby Cider with a taste of Citrus Fruit – brewed by Carlsberg brewery, 4.5% ABV, 500ml., (Copenhagen, Denmark)


on the back of the can:

“In the mood for some fruity refreshment with a piquant zest? You’ve made the right choice with this Citrus Fruit cider with a fresh bite and slightly less sweet taste experience.”

img_20160308_010259.jpg


  • Style: (flavoured – citrus fruit) Apple Cider
  • Taste: Cloying candy orange/grapefruit light apple juice
  • Where I got it : BC Liquor Stores
  • How much: $3.45 CAD – 500ml, November 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: no

Visual: Pours clear pale yellow with no head, ringed retention, a few slow large CO2 streams.

Nose: liquid orange body soap (lvl-6)-pungency

Attack: crisp-tart, incoming dense fruity sugars

Mid-palate: (lvl-6-sweetness), candy green/red apple, candy orange

Finish: mildly cloying, residual sugars

Summary: Soapy aroma, mostly candied flavour with hardly impressionable apple in there. Not particularly offensive, but just not authentic.

Bramble Bubbly – Sea Cider (Saanichton, BC, Canada)

image

Wassail – Sea Cider., 6.0% (now 9.9%) ABV, 750ml, (Saanichton, BC, Canada) (*local BC craft cider*)

from the seacider.ca website:

“The mighty blackberry is a tenacious invader of Vancouver Island orchards, but a touch of its sun-soaked sweetness added to apple cider makes for a sinfully delicious blushing semi dry sparkling cider. Raise a glass of Sea Cider’s Bramble Bubbly, and celebrate Vancouver Island fruit at its best!

The Story:
Bramble Bubbly combines the best of BC cider apples with wild local blackberries. Vancouver Island’s native species is called ‘The Trailing Wild Blackberry,’ a cousin of the Himalayan Blackberry. Bramble Bubbly is produced by milling and juicing our apples, and adding champagne yeast to begin fermentation. Fermentation happens at cool temperatures to maximize the aromatics of the cider base. Finally, blackberries are added to achieve the rose hue and luscious blackberry flavour.

Tasting Notes:

  • Appearance: Sparkling rosé
  • Aromas, flavours: Green apple, orchard leaves, blackberries, confectionary notes.
  • Acid/sweetness: Tart and balanced with residual sweetness.
  • Mouthfeel: Sharp yet smooth with minimal tannins, long and viscous finish.

Suggested Food Pairings:
This is an ideal sipper for the patio—thirst-quenching on its own for a summer day, or anytime with a salty snack. Bramble Bubby is perfect for a post-beach libation, and for the base of a unique sangria. Anything goes!

Pairs with salmon, summer salads, berries, outdoor barbecue, mild or sharp cheeses, cured meats, and poultry dishes. Also pairs well with desserts—warm apple and berry crumble, bite-sized bonbons, or vanilla ice cream. Pairings are only limited by your imagination!


  • Style: (flavoured – blackberry) Apple Cider
  • Taste: Dense cloying apple sugars tangy medium acidic vinegar blackberry fruity
  • Where I got it : Firefly / Vancouver
  • How much: $16 CAD (after 10% off) – 750ml., July 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: yes

Visual: (old labeling prior to 2015, cellared for 4 years). Pours pale pinkish orange with no head, ringed micro bubble retention, slow singular micro bubble streams.

Nose: woody VANILLA, fieldberry fruitiness, apple cider vinegar background. (lvl-5)-pungency

Attack: dense cloying sugars, incoming acidity

Mid-palate: woody with funk-apple throughout, background tangy, apple cider vinegar sour, (lvl-6-sweetness), red apple juice, blackberry

Finish: cinnamon, residual apple sugars, cloying finish.

Summary: This one at 6% ABV is on the cloying side but still with likable fruity flavours from start to finish. The newer bottlings at almost 10% ABV should be more balanced.

Cracked Apple Cider with Tequila & Lime (UK)

image

  • My Rating: [D+]

Cracked Apple Cider with Tequila & Lime, 5.5% ABV, 500ml, (Gloucester, UK)

printed on the front-left of the can:

“Cracked Apple is a cider with real character and barrels of personality. With our drinks, as in life, we like to keep things zingy and that’s exactly what we’ve done by adding a splash of smooth tequila and a squeeze of lime to our tangy apple cider. Enjoy super-chilled.

Ingredients: Carbonated Water, Fermented Apple Juice, Sugar, Ethanol, Citric Acid, Flavours, Tequila, Lime Juice Concentrate, (Preservatives) Potassium Sorbate, Sulphur Dioxide.”

img_20160209_214353.jpg


  • Style: (tequila, lime flavoured) Apple Cider
  • Taste: Sour puckery lime red/green apple light tequila
  • Where I got it : ???
  • How much: $3 – 500ml., ???
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: no

Visual: Pours light apple juice yellow a small fizzy quickly dissipating head, virtually no retention and only a few sporadic bubbles.

Nose: bright lime, green apple, background agave. (lvl-7)-pungency

Attack: crisp, incoming sour sugars

Mid-palate: soda-like fizzy, HUGE sour-tangy, (lvl-8)-sweetness, tart (MAIN) tequila, lime, red & green apple -> cloying sugars

Finish: plasticky, puckery-sticky gums, palate roughness, candy-eqse fruity exhale.

Summary: Initial sips are decent, but it becomes too puckery too basic too fast. It might be okay with a meal but very aggressively sour and candy-like without any real boldness of flavour.

Ruby Rose – Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse (Saanichton, BC, Canada)

image

Ruby Rose – Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse, 9.9% ABV, 750ml., (Saanichton, BC, Canada)

on the front-left label:

“A captivating semi-sweet cider infused with rhubarb, Ruby Rose is a beguiling vixen and part of our Canadian Invasion Series. She may be as aromatic as rhubarb pie, but her namesake is the merciless Rosa Rugosa, an invasive plant that threatens many coastal regions. Proceeds from our Canadian Invasion Series support efforts to combat invasive species in sensitive ecological areas.”

wpid-img_20150723_030647.jpg

  • Style: (rhubarb) flavoured apple cider
  • Taste: Flat fruity berry alcoholic apple dense sugar
  • Where I got it : Crosstown Liquor (Vancouver)
  • How much: $20 – 750ml., August 2014
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: not for those averse to sweet ciders

Visual: Pours pale pinkish-orange with virtually no head, barely any activity, a few bubbles on the surface. Not much visual appeal.

Nose: woody tangy apple wine, some prickly acidity. (lvl-3)-pungency

Attack: crisp-flat CO2,

Mid-palate: cloying sugars -> (lvl-7)-sweetness, mild alcohol bitterness, medium tangy-sour, (MAIN) apple wine, dense apple sugars, strawberry & nondescript fieldberry.

Finish: apple peel/rhubarb exhale, sugary flat mouthfeel finish.

Summary: Okay flavour but nothing punchy or memorable; That coupled with the lack of textural mouthfeel makes this one just average. It’s okay with a meal.

Ginger Apple Cider – Lonetree Cider Co. (Vancouver, BC, Canada)

wpid-20141115_203137.jpg

Ginger Apple Cider – Lonetree Cider Co., 5.5% ABV, 355ml., (Vancouver, BC, Canada)

on the back of the can:

“We believe the old ways are still the best. That’s why we always use genuine cider apples to craft our authentic cider selections. Now, we’ve added a zesty twist of real ginger, for an exotic and lightly spicy cider experience. We know you’ll taste the difference.”

wpid-20141115_203152.jpg

  • Style: (ginger) Flavoured Apple Cider
  • Taste: Spicy ginger apple
  • Where I got it : BC Liquor Stores
  • How much: $11/6pack – 6x355ml., October 2014
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to cider aficionados: yes, if you like ginger

Visual: Pours clear light yellow with no head and a few slow and steady streams.

Nose: tangy ginger + cane sugar, almost like a ginger beer. Very bright and inviting. (lvl-7)-pungency

Attack: sharp carbonation, dense sugars

Mid-palate: tangy acidity, fizzy-tingly, (lvl-6)-sweetness, (MAIN) ginger, apple juice,

Finish: light-med ginger burn, burpy, light-cloying, lingering ginger burn finish.

Summary: Authentic ginger as advertised with a substantial burn, quite good all things considered. Not too pretty visually or texture-wise, but very sippable with a meal.