OldMrCrow (1518) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JAN 20, 2008
2.8 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 10/20
Dang it, I really wanted to rave about this one, but it’s not to be. Pours a mid-gold with essentially no head. The aroma is like a caricature of cheap bourbon (the vanilla-ish oak, not the whisky bite) , as if the Cheesecake Factory (TM) were to make a bourbon cheesecake with artificial bourbon flavoring or some such. The flavor too is dominated by the bourbon, and it just doesn’t work. Tons of vanilla, almost plasticky, vegetal, some apples buried underneath of course, revealing the cider base, but coming through watery and driven by the barrel. As it warms to room temperature it improves somewhat; the bourbon recedes and the apples come forward and we’re into 3.something territory.
after4ever (5279) - Brier, Washington, USA - JAN 5, 2008
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
750, plastic screw-top and foil. Gorgeous medium amber with brilliant gold overtones. Little splash of wispy bubbles on the pour, then no head or lace at all. Plenty of steadily rising tight tiny bubbles. Big sour apple nose; gorgeous. Smells (and later tastes) like both red and green tart apples. Light and refreshing body with a hint of spritz from the carb. There’s a delectable harsh little bite to the mid-palate; doesn’t seem to be from barrel charring, but it’s hard to place--has a fruit-like acidulence to it, almost, has almost a charriness, too. Just a cool by-product of aging this stuff the way they do. I am fully into this cider now. Mellows out to a more steady sweetness as it warms, with the bite lessening. Great stuff.
Oakes (10935) - Savusavu, FIJI ISLANDS - JUN 19, 2007
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Sparkling deep gold colour. Fresh apple aroma with hints of wood, vanilla. Full body. Off-dry finish. Light apple signature, rounded & mellow. Lightly toasty...a good September sort of cider.
skoisirius (1136) - Earth, Washington, USA - OCT 16, 2006
2.5 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
750 ml bottle into a 2oz taster glass. Pours a thick and solid see-through yellow, like the color of honey. Not much happens when you take a deep whiff - there is more wooden hints than anything appley. The flavor tends to be a bit bland and watery overall (which is interesting for something that’s 8% ABV), but does bring in a very small and light apple flavor that is very easily taken over by a tiny hint of bourbon wood. A quick and dry finish ends very quickly after each sip. Nothing much going on besides this. I’m still trying to find a cider that’s amazing!
acertain (249) - Seattle, Washington, USA - OCT 1, 2006
2.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 11/20
Wow. First rater. First time for me in that esteemed position. Wish I could put this in the running for a top-10 slot, but, alas, this was a bit of a disappointment to me. It poured a rich yellow with a hint of amber. The bubbles were larger than I typically see in cider. The aroma was of oak and burbon; I didn’t pick up any apple. In the mouth, it was quite dry and watery, again with flavors dominated by the burbon-barrel aging. There was some apple there, but not enough to balance. I would prefer a cider with a hint of burbon and oak to a weak, watery burbon with a hint of apple.