Am I allowed to review ciders on a beer review page? A running friend recommended Crispin Honey Crisp cider to me, so here goes.
Aside from trying other peoples ciders, I’d never actually bought one or put much thought into them. They seem like taking Martinelli’s apple cider and dosing it with vodka or Hefeweisen, but I went a long and paid $5 for a 22 oz to see for myself.
Crack the cap on this thing and it smells like the Strawberry Shortcake character who smelled like apples. Very, very strong tart and sweet apples and melon. Almost a synthetic aspect to the smell it was so strong. Not bad at all, just very strong.
I didn’t know what to pour it into, so I used my Inside Trail pint glass and was shocked at the color. It’s a dark and dirty lemonadey yellow that my wife described as “looking like Thera-Flu.” Nailed it! No head whatsoever, and just a few tiny bubbles dancing around the top.
I was surprised on a few fronts. First, I didn’t hate it. I was expecting a fruity girly drink that didn’t satisfy me. It wasn’t bad…wasn’t great, but wasn’t bad. Definitely drinkable, and it didn’t hurt I could taste the 6.5% alcohol.
I was also surprised that the aggressive aromas died down a bit on the tongue and didn’t overpower the flavor. The cantaloupe, citrus, and green apples are still there, but they’re not being obnoxious about it. Whereas a big brewery (is that where they make ciders? A cider house? cidery? I dunno) would keep with the strong flavors, this tastes more artisnal. [follow up: turns out it's owned by Coors.]
The lack of carbonation surprised me too. My only experience with ciders is really the aforementioned Martinelli’s– which I recall as being fairly carbonated. This has none at all, which gave to its legitimacy a bit.
Finally, I was surprised that the honey came through. So many products use honey, but very few are actually discernable. This cider gave just a hint of it, but it was the just the right amount to give the right amount of sweetness.
I’d definitely drink this again. Probably not when watching a baseball game or doing yard work, but it was a highly drinkable…drink.