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Farmgate – Russet Craft

Cider Profile:

Name: Farmgate – Russet Craft
Sampled September 2021

Brand: Farmgate Cider
Type:  Apple – Single Varietal
Location of Brewing: Carp, ON
ABV: 9%
Website Link: farmgatecider.ca
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: N/A
Sugar Content: N/ASize(s) available: 375ml (bottle)
Availability: Farmgate online store + select Ottawa farmers markets
Flavour: Apple
Colour:  Hazy, straw yellow
Carbonation: Medium streaming bubbles

Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Strong, pulpy and funky bitter-sharp apples with some tannic notes.
Initial Taste: Medium tingle from carbonation combined with tart notes, followed by semi-sharp bright apples. Heritage and tannic. Dry, tart and clean with a hint of caramel notes.  Lots of body
After Taste: Becomes less apple focused but retains many other characteristics.  Cleanness remains with a bit more acidity.  Long lingering.
On ice: A bit brighter and cleaner.

Additional Notes:  The Russet by Farmgate Cider Co is a dry, bitter sharp offering that is clean with a touch of tannic notes.  Quite full bodied, it lingers a while retaining the apple characteristics while getting dryer.  Very classic, heritage style offering that has a lot of depth.  Very crisp/fruity and apple forward. Has a lot of body but still light to consume, with a touch of tingly carbonation.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2
Sour – 3.5
Crisp – 3.5
Dry – 4
Fruity – 4

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Two Blokes – Golden Mile
More Sour – Kings Mill – Russet Heritage
More Dry – Loch Mor – Russet (Danforth Series)
More Crisp – Clafeld – Russet Single Varietal

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Loch Mór – Russet (Danforth Series)

Cider Profile:

Name: Loch Mor – Russet
Sampled September 2021

Brand: Loch Mor Cider Co
Type: Apple – Single varietal
Location of Brewing: Hillier, ON
ABV: 10.2%
Website Link: https://www.lochmorcider.com/
Ingredients: Russet apples, sulphites
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 375ml (bottle)
Availability: Loch Mor online and retail stores
Flavour: Apple
Colour:  Hazy rusty orange
Carbonation: Small, frequently steaming bubbles, less on ice


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium, sweet but semi-bright and cellard.  Some caramel notes.
Initial Taste: Light bite from carbonation, semi-clean start with slightly tart but bright
After Taste: The longer after the sip, the more fermentation notes arrive, less apple and very dank.  Apple becomes almost unrecognizable with the amount of earthiness and funk, with even some stone fruit pit elements.  Minerality that lingers also.
On ice: Dramatically waterdown and loss of flavour and funkieness. 

Additional Notes:  The Russet by Loch Mor is unique as it starts off with the first sip being a clean burst of bright and smooth apples before it starts its downward march to the cellar (and stays there).  Finishes with an excessively long aftertaste that has a lot of fermentation, dank and funky notes.  A lot is going on in this offering that is dry and very high in alcohol(10.2%).  As a pet-nat, it has that strong and frequent carbonation and depth . The more trub (unfiltered parts), the more intense the offering where the tannins and dryness show off. Natural ferment so expect sediment at the bottom and when poured.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 1.5
Sour – 3
Crisp – 1.5
Dry – 4
Fruity – 2

Next recommendations:
More Sweet –TBA
More Sour – TBA
More Dry – TBA
More Crisp – TBA

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Loch Mór – Harrison

Cider Profile:

Name: Loch Mór – Harrison
Sampled August 2021

Brand: Loch Mór Cider Co
Type: Apple – Single varietal
Location of Brewing: Hillier, ON
ABV: 8.3%
Website Link: lochmorcider.com
Ingredients: Harrison apples, sulphites
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A 

Size(s) available: 375ml (bottle)
Availability: Loch Mór online and retail store
Flavour: Apple
Colour:  Hazy rusty orange
Carbonation: Fine foam/bubbles that are still at top


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Strong aroma. Caramelized and astringent apples. Funk and earth.
Initial Taste: No bite. Pulpy, caramelized apple notes with acidity on the nose. Orange/citrus hints. Thick with orange wine elements.
After Taste: Acidity continues, with apples becoming slightly drier, leaving your mouth pretty dry. Slight wood/earth hints that linger. Mild smokiness at the finish. Somewhat long lasting.
On ice: Much thinner body. Less harsh notes. More juice-forward.

Additional Notes:  Loch Mór’s Harrison is a part of their Danforth Road series that makes elevated offerings with rare and unique apples. This cider smells and tastes very different from one another. While it smells strong, astringent and funky, it’s actually much smoother to consume. A caramelized, pulpy apple flavour drives this throughout. While it smells decently alcoholic – and is 8.3% – it tastes much lighter. With some skin contact wine-like notes, its almost like a hybrid with an orange wine and an ice cider in flavour. Acidic, pulpy apples make this taste very juice forward – almost tastes like fresh pressed, unfiltered high quality juice.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2
Sour – 3.5
Crisp – 3
Dry – 4
Fruity – 4

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Heritage Estates – Dragon’s Gold
More Sour – 
More Dry – 
More Crisp – Farmgate – Founders Reserve

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Loch Mór – Savvy Pomme

Cider Profile:

Name: Loch Mór – Savvy Pomme
Sampled June 2021

Brand: Loch Mór Cider Co
Type:  Apple – Single Varietal
Location of Brewing: Hillier, ON
ABV: 8.5%
Website Link: lochmorcider.ca
Ingredients: Apples, sulphites
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 375ml (bottle)
Availability: Loch Mór Retail and online store
Flavour: Apple
Colour: Translucent, sunshine yellow
Carbonation: Mixed, lightly streaming bubbles.
Heavy carbonation when first opened.


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Sweet pulpy and bright apple with hints of pineapple.
Initial Taste: Light bite from carbonation. Sweet and smooth apple that’s creamy with some acidic notes. Bright pineapple-like notes. Rich fermentation flavours.
After Taste: Apple reduces and becomes a little more dry and acidic. Some long lasting tannic notes. 
On ice: Carbonation is slightly reduced. A little more acidic and less apple forward

Additional Notes:  Loch Mór’s Savvy Pomme is a uniquely smooth cider that is is off-dry yet still higher in tannic elements and acidity.  Even being as delicate as it appears, it’s much higher in alcohol than you would think at 8.5. Rich in fermentation notes and depth. It is easy to drink with a long lingering aftertaste.  Has a unique pineapple flavour to it, although it is a single varietal offering.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2.5
Sour – 3.5
Crisp – 3
Dry – 4
Fruity – 3.5 

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Slab Town – Pineapple Mimosa
More Sour – Steel Town – Salvaje (Pet Nat)
More Dry – Grey & Gold – Heritage Dry
More Crisp – Kings Mill – Russet Heritage

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Duntroon – Empire Extra Dry

Cider Profile:

Name: Duntroon – Empire Extra Dry Cyder
Sampled May 2021

Brand: Duntroon Cyder House
Type: Apple – Single Varietal
Location of Brewing: Duntroon, ON
ABV: 5.5%
Website Link: duntrooncyderhouse.com
Ingredients: Apples
Gluten Free: yes
Sugar Content: 0g/L 

Size(s) available: 473ml (can)
Availability: LCBO and Duntroon Cyder House
retail and online store
Flavour: Apple
Colour: Sunflower yellow
Carbonation: Large, semi-streaming bubbles


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Strong aroma. Sweet and pulpy apple with slight acidity
Initial Taste: Medium bite from carbonation. Punchy bright apples that are semi-sweet (naturally so) and very crisp. Extra clean. Honey essences.
After Taste: Apple dissipates becoming drier but leaving most of the other elements the same.  Somewhat long lingering.
On ice: Reduced carbonation and some sharp elements.

Additional Notes: The Empire by Duntroon Cyder House is a strong example of an extra clean and crisp single varietal.  Very apple focused, it has a strong flavour and body from start to finish. Empire flavour is naturally semi-sweet and very bright but its a dry cider – with no added sugar. Not as sweet and juicy as it smells, but very crisp and refreshing with a bit of a kick from the apples. Lots of flavour and character for having just 1 type of apple and only apples as an ingredient. 

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2
Sour – 3
Crisp – 5
Dry – 4
Fruity – 4

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Thornbury – Original Apple Cider
More Sour – Duxbury – Heritage 1650
More Dry – Liberty Village – Extra Dry Cider
More Crisp – 

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Clafeld – Spy

Cider Profile:

Name: Clafeld – Spy
Sampled May 2021

Brand:  Clafeld Cider House
Type: Apple – Single Varietal
Location of Brewing: Picton, ON
ABV: 6%
Website Link: waupooswinery.com/cider-house
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: 5g/L

Size(s) available: 500ml & 750ml (bottles)
Availability: Waupoos Winery Online Store
+ Clafeld retail store

Flavour: Apple
Colour:  Transparent mustard yellow
Carbonation: Large infrequently bubbles


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Sweet aroma of bright apples. Cotton candy notes. Mild acidity.
Initial Taste: Medium bite. Quick acidic and semi-dry apple. Naturally sweet, bright apple notes. Cotton candy elements. Extra crisp.
After Taste: Apple flavour continues with its acidity slowly dwindling. Clean finish. Semi-long lasting.
On ice: Less carbonation and less acidity. Flavour less prominent.

Additional Notes:  Clafeld’s single varietal Spy Cider is a very crisp cider that grasps the palate with natural acidity from the apple. A dry cider but with naturally sweet and bright apple flavours, its got a clean flavour but somewhat coating of the mouth. Unique cotton candy-esque flavour notes detected. Very apple forward with not too many alcohol fermentation flavours or other flavour notes present.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2.5
Sour – 3
Crisp – 5
Dry – 4
Fruity – 4.5

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Front Road – The Spy
More Sour – FieldBird – Northern Spy (2017)
More Dry – Windswept – Northern Spy (2018)
More Crisp – 

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Kings Mill – Russet Heritage

Cider Profile:

Name: Kings Mill – Russet Heritage
Sampled April 2021

Brand:  Kings Mill Cider
Type: Apple – Single Varietal
Location of Brewing: Stirling, ON
ABV: 8.8%
Website Link: kingsmillcider.company.site
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 750ml (bottle)
Availability: Kings Mill retail + online
Flavour: Apple
Colour:  Transparent pale yellow
Carbonation: Large streaming bubble


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Strong aroma. Thick, juicy golden russet. Some fermentation notes.
Initial Taste: Minimal bite from carbonation. Quickly juicy from bright golden russet apples. Heavy tannins and acidity add layers. Some earthy hints.
After Taste: Golden russet notes remain the same. Acidity weakens with some more fermentation notes appearing. Dry but bright finish.
On ice: Reduced carbonation, acidity and tannins. Slightly sweeter.

Additional Notes:   Kings Mill Russet Heritage is a wonderfully forceful offering that can satisfy everyone from longtime cider connoisseurs to new cider fans. Very juicy, it is tannic and acidic, delighting the taste buds with a lot to dissect, and yet somehow still very smooth to drink. The apple notes are bright and clear. A dry cider with a lot of heritage fruit grit. 

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2.5
Sour – 3
Crisp – 4
Dry – 4
Fruity – 4.5

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Two Blokes – Golden Mile
More Sour – Duntroon – Two Parish Perry
More Dry – FieldBird – Northern Spy (2017)
More Crisp – Hoity Toity – 283 Cider

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Heeman’s – Dry Empire

Cider Profile:

Name: Heeman’s – Dry Empire
Sampled May 2021

Brand:  Heeman’s Cider
Type: Apple – Single Varietal
Location of Brewing: Thorndale, ON
ABV: 7%
Website Link: heeman.ca
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: N/A
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 750ml (bottle)
Availability: Heeman’s retail and online store
Flavour: Empire Apple
Colour:  Transparent pale-golden yellow
Carbonation: Large, infrequently streaming


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Bright and slightly dry apples with some tannic elements.
Initial Taste: Light bite followed by slightly tangy/tart and tannic apples that are bright and punchy. Balanced but tantalizing acidity.
After Taste: Becomes slightly drier and a little earthy in the long lasting aftertaste. Cleans out of the mouth well.
On ice: Slightly thinner, but no real flavour change.

Additional Notes:  Heeman’s Dry Empire is a single varietal that really captures how crisp and clean an Empire Apple can be. It’s bright and uplifting with some tannic elements. Clean all the way though with a somewhat long aftertaste. Not many fermentation notes here, as such it is very crushable. 

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2.5
Sour – 3
Crisp – 4.5
Dry – 3.5
Fruity – 4

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Shale Ridge – Semi-Sweet
More Sour – Revel – Time and Place
More Dry – Kings Mill – Russet Heritage Cider
More Crisp – Thornbury – Honeycrisp Apple

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Windswept – Northern Spy (2018)

Cider Profile:

Name: Windswept Orchard Cider – Northern Spy (2018)
Sampled April 2021

Brand: Windswept Orchard Cider
Type: Apple – Single Varietal
Location of Brewing: Meaford, ON
ABV: 6.5%
Website Link: windsweptcider.com
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 750ml (bottle)
Availability: Windswept retail and online store
Flavour: Apple
Colour: Transparent rustic orange
Carbonation: Large, frequently streaming with some foam.
Heavily carbonated. 


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Strong aroma. Sweet pulpy and thick apples (ice cider-like aspects).
Initial Taste: Light bite from carbonation, Sweet, pulpy and thick apples that have some rustic and slightly earthy elements. Caramelized and bright apple.
After Taste: Somewhat clean finish, slightly less bright and sweet.  Finishes drier with a lot of peel notes. Some trub in the bottom.
On ice: Less sweet and bright, similar carbonation levels. More fermentation notes.

Additional Notes: The Northern Spy (2018) by Windswept Orchard Cider is a thick, caramelized apple-focused wild pet-nat cider.  Slightly rustic, with a lot of flavour – has a bunch of ice-cider elements without the astringency.  A lot of carbonation and tingle.  For us, this one gets better at time as it ages in the bottle (bottle conditioned as well).  A bit of trub, but be mindful of shaking it before opening as there is a chance of a foam-over.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 3.5
Sour – 3
Crisp – 2.5
Dry – 3
Fruity – 4

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Thornbury – Original Apple Cider
More Sour – West Avenue – Legend of the Fall
More Dry – FieldBird – Northern Spy (2017)
More Crisp – Farmgate – North Road

Links to Other Stories
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Links to Cocktails
Links to Comparisons

 

Clafeld – Russet Cider

Cider Profile:

Name: Clafeld – Russet
Sampled March 2021

Brand: Clafeld Cider House 
Type: Apple – Single Varietal
Location of Brewing: Picton, ON
ABV: 8.5%
Website Link: waupooswinery.com
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: 5g/L

Size(s) available: 500ml & 750ml (bottles)
Availability: Clafeld Retail or Waupoos Winery
Online Store

Flavour: Apple
Colour: Transparent light golden yellow
Carbonation: Medium, infrequently streaming bubbles


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Bright and clean apple. Semi sweet smelling with some smokiness.  Juicy.
Initial Taste: Light bite. Bitter sharp and bright Russet apple. Clean to start but gets smokier. A lot of alcoholic and tannic peel notes. 
After Taste: Becomes less apple focused in the aftertaste.  Slightly drier. Semi-clean finish.
On ice: Reduced carbonation, less apple.

Additional Notes:  Part of the single varietal series put out by Clafeld Cider House, the Russet is a bright, bitter sharp offering that has a slight smokiness to it (as is somewhat common with single varietals from the Russet).  Grippingly tannic (slightly sour with peel elements), it’s still a little smoother and easier to consume than other russet offerings we’ve enjoyed. Balanced and apple forward, though it still tastes rather alcoholic at 8.5%.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2
Sour – 3
Crisp – 4
Dry – 3.5
Fruity – 4

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Windswept – Crimson Crisp (2017)
More Sour – Farmgate – Wild Child
More Dry – Loch Mor – Golden Russet
More Crisp – Thornbury – Honeycrisp Cider

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Clafeld – Fuji

Cider Profile:

Name: Clafeld – Fuji
Sampled February 2021

Brand: Clafeld Cider House
Type: Apple – Single Varietal
Location of Brewing: Picton, ON
ABV: 7.5%
Website Link:
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: 5g/l

Size(s) available: 500ml + 750ml (bottles)
Availability: Clafeld retail and online store
Flavour: Apple
Colour: Translucent sunshine yellow
Carbonation: Medium, semi-streaming bubbles


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Sweet juicy apple.  Clean with some traditional green-apple elements.
Initial Taste: Light bite, little carbonation.  Bright, juicy, bittersharp Fuji apple with a touch of tartness and acidity. Some tannins and both peel and flesh elements. Tangy and very natural tasting.
After Taste: Apple remains the same but slowly reduces. Becomes slightly drier and more peel-like elements become present. Decently clean. 
On ice: Less acidic and flavourful.

Additional Notes:  The Fuji by Clafeld is a single-varietal that has elements similar to the fruit, with with a touch of fermentation notes. Starts off bitter-sharp and bright, and finishes very peel-like in nature. Quite dry. Mild green apple notes. Light zippiness.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 1.5
Sour – 2.5
Crisp – 3.5
Dry – 4
Fruity – 3.5

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Domaine Cleroux – Nation’Spiked Sweet
More Sour – Loch Mor – Untamed (2019)
More Dry – Beaver Valley – Flagship Dry
More Crisp – Hounds of Erie – Best in Show

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The Old Tun – Russet

Cider Profile:

Name: The Old Tun – Russet
Sampled October 2020

Brand: The Old Tun (Ridgeport Wine inc)
Type: Apple – Dry
Location of Brewing: Niagara, ON
ABV: 9.5%
Website Link: theoldtun.ca
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: N/A
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 750ml (bottle)
Availability: Drink Collab Online Store
Flavour: Apple
Colour:  Translucent, sunshine yellow
Carbonation: Large, infrequently streaming bubbles



Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Light aroma. Sweet apple. Bright, light apples with some acidic notes.
Initial Taste: Light bite from carbonation. Bright apple with some earthy and nutty elements.  Light bodied with some vanilla elements.
After Taste: Apple becomes less present, barrel age elements become more noticeable as time goes on. Finished slightly woody and mostly dry, kind of juicy.
On ice: Slightly less apple focused and flavourful, however quite similar.

Additional Notes: The Russet Cider from The Old Tun is a barrel aged single-varietal cider but lighter than most other barrel aged offerings.  Tastes quite similar to the unfermented flesh and skin of the apple. Vanilla and woody notes, with a pretty traditional apple flavour of the Russet apple. Light bodied and smooth, its easy to drink (particularly for being a barrel-aged cider)

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2
Sour – 2.5
Crisp – 3.5
Dry – 3.5
Fruity – 3.5

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Spy Cider – Golden Eye
More Sour – The Old Third – Golden Russet
More Dry – Loch Mor – Golden Russet
More Crisp – Thornbury – Honeycrisp Cider

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Windswept – Crimson Crisp (2018)

Cider Profile:

Name: Windswept – Crimson Crisp (2018)
Sampled October 2020

Brand:  Windswept Orchard Cider
Type: Apple – Single Varietal
Location of Brewing: Meaford, ON
ABV: 6.6%
Website Link:
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 500ml (bottles)
Availability: Windswept Retail + online stores
Flavour: Apple
Colour:  Hazy straw yellow
Carbonation: Medium, frequently streaming bubbles



Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Strong aroma. Funky, earthy notes amongst a bright apple base. Tonic hints.
Initial Taste:  Sharp bite from carbonation. Gripping tannic apple notes that appear quickly. Slightly tart. Peel and flesh notes.
After Taste: Carbonation reduces and makes way for a smoother flavour and mouthfeel. Honey and melon notes emerge. Dry but bright apple finish.
On ice: Carbonation drastically reduced. Flavour and harsher elements reduced. Fairly watered down.

Additional Notes:  This highly carbonated offering from Windswept, their 2018 harvest vintage of their Crimson Crisp features sharp apple flavours and some funky, earthy notes to give it that orchard edge. Balanced tannins help give this cider depth. You get the red apple peel flavour from the crimson crisp apples, but you also get some apple flesh notes here. 

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2
Sour – 3
Crisp – 4
Dry – 4
Fruity – 3.5 

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Ardiel – Dry Apple Cider
More Sour – Grey & Gold – Spruce of the Bruce
More Dry – Duxbury – English Scrumpy
More Crisp – Thornbury – Honey Crisp Cider

Links to Other Stories
Windswept – Crimson Crisp (2017)
Links to Pairings
Links to Cocktails
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Revel – Good Evening

Cider Profile:

Name: Revel – Good Evening
Sampled October 2020

Brand:  Revel Cider
Type: Apple – Dry
Location of Brewing: Guelph, ON
ABV: 7.8%
Website Link: revelcider.ca
Ingredients: Cortland cider, vidal, honey, honeycomb
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A 

Size(s) available: 750ml (bottle)
Availability: Revel Retail Store and Online Store
Flavour: Apple
Colour:  Cloudy pale yellow
Carbonation: Mixture of bubble sizes, bubbly



Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Pulpy and creamy apple notes. Slightly acetic. Hints of honey.
Initial Taste: Medium bite. Quick red apple taste, especially peel. Some acidity and tannins.
After Taste: Apples continue but white wine notes emerge. Becomes creamier. Ends on delicate honey notes. Lingering apple tannins that are fresh tasting.
On ice: Carbonation reduced. Much crisper and smoother. All flavour elements reduced.

Additional Notes:  Revel’s Good Evening fits into their grand scheme of cider offerings but is unique in its red apple focus and delicate honey notes at the finish. Crisp, acidic and decently tannic. It has vidal blended into it, but it’s not dominating, and only adds mild flavour and body characteristics. 

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2.5
Sour – 3.5
Crisp – 3.5
Dry – 4
Fruity – 3

Next recommendations:
More Sweet –
More Sour – 
More Dry –
More Crisp – 

Links to Other Stories
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Clafeld – Ginger Gold (Dry)

Cider Profile:

Name: Clafeld – Ginger Gold (Dry)
Sampled October 2020

Brand:  Clafeld Cider House (Waupoos Winery)
Type: Apple – Dry, single varietal
Location of Brewing: Picton, ON
ABV: 6%
Website Link: waupooswinery.com
Ingredients: Ginger gold apples, sulphites
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: 48g/L

Size(s) available: 750ml (bottle)
Availability: Clafeld retail store + Waupoos Winery online store
Flavour: Apple
Colour: Translucent, light yellow
Carbonation: Large, infrequently streaming bubbles



Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Bright and juicy apple with a hint of earthiness.
Initial Taste: Light bite from carbonation. Smooth juicy apple flesh with a touch of dryness and tannins present. Zippy notes. Bartlett-pear like notes. 
After Taste: Dissipates quickly.  Becomes more dry and less apple forward.  Some earthy and funky elements become more present. Mild ginger root undertones.
On ice: Carbonation dramatically reduced leaving a more watered-down flavour.

Additional Notes:  Not to be confused with a ginger flavoured cider, the Ginger Gold by Clafeld is a single varietal that is semi-dry and a little bartlett-pear like.  Finishes drier with a bit of earthy elements, like the name of the apple implies, ginger-like.  Zippy, with some spice-like undertones. Light bodied overall. Very apple flesh focused and juicy. 

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2.5
Sour – 2
Crisp – 3.5
Dry –3.5
Fruity – 2.5

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Shiny – Apple Cider
More Sour – County – Waupoos Premium Cider
More Dry – The Old Third – Golden Russet
More Crisp – Mackintosh Ciderhouse – Five Acre Cider

Links to Other Stories
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Front Road – The Spy

Cider Profile:

Name:   Front Road – The Spy
Sampled May 2020

Brand: Front Road Ciderworks – Blueberry Estate Hills
Type:
Apple – Crisp
Location of Brewing: St. Williams
ABV:
6%
Website Link:
blueberry-hill.ca
Ingredients:  
N/A
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content:  N/A

Size(s) available: 500 mL (bottle)
Availability:
Blueberry Hill Estates Retail Store + Online Store
Flavour:
Apple
Colour:
Hazy straw yellow
Carbonation:
Small, very frequently streaming bubbles



Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Slightly astringent and late season-esque apple juice.
Initial Taste: Light bite from carbonation. Musty and muddled apple with some astringency and fermentation notes
After Taste: Apple becomes cleaner and definable with time. The spy apple becomes much more noticeable in the aftertaste with some spice notes.  Standard aftertaste length. Some caramel notes
On ice: Slightly thinner with a bit less carbonation, minimal change.

Additional Notes: An interesting single varietal, The Spy – made solely with Spy Apples – is mostly a single flavour journey but does have more depth than some other Spy single varietal ciders we’ve tried.  It’s easy to drink but still holds some more tannic, muddled notes that the palate may have to adjust to.  It becomes cleaner as you consume.  A very middle-of-the-road cider, no flavour is dominating or goes too far in either direction. Looks hazy and kind of tastes like it too.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2
Sour –2.5
Crisp – 3
Dry – 2.5
Fruity – 3

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Heritage Estates – Dragon’s Gold
More Sour – Pommies – Farmhouse
More Dry – Windswept – Northern Spy
More Crisp – Thornbury – Original Cider

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Windswept – Crimson Crisp (2017)

Cider Profile:

Name: Windswept – Crimson Crisp (2017)
Sampled April 2018

Brand:  Windswept Orchard Cider
Type:
Apple – Dry
Location of Brewing:
Grey County, ON
ABV
: 7.4%
Website Link:
windsweptcider.com
Ingredients:
Apples, sulphites
Gluten Free:
Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 500mL (bottle)
Availability:
Retired, previous vintage
Flavour: Apple
Colour:
Bright but cloudy sunshine yellow
Carbonation
: Medium, frequent streaming bubbles. Very carbonated and fizzy.

 


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium sweet aroma – with some earthy notes of freshly pressed apples.
Initial Taste: Medium bite from fizzy carbonation (that has a tonic-water taste). The cider becomes quickly tart on the palate with hints of sweetness. An earthy astringency becomes present. Tannins present in taste and feel. Strong dry apple flavour.
After Taste: Long lasting aftertaste that becomes more tangy with time.  Finishes softer and sweeter with less carbonation and a more crisp, juicy apple taste. Overall quite dry.
On ice: Less sweet. More tonic water tasting in nature.

Additional Notes:  The Crimson Crisp has a unique tasting journey cider, which finishes like how it smells, but the first sip is tart and very carbonated.  Well balanced with a lot of elements, it’s a very fruit forward but does not stray from tasting like a single apple variety. Old world, partially “somerset-style” in nature as the unpasteurized, unfiltered naturally sparkling cider is far from commercially produced.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 3
Sour – 3.5
Crisp – 3
Dry – 3.5
Fruity – 3.5

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Heartwood Dry Maple Cider
More Sour – 401 Craft Apple Cider
More Dry – Tawse Sparkling Cider
More Crisp – Great Canadian Cider – Nice and Dry

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