Happy Thirsty Thursday!
You may or may not know my love for hard ciders. It’s a good go-to choice when I’m not feeling wine and there isn’t a beer on tap that tickles my fancy.
The thing is, I tend to like my ciders dry. The cloyingly sweet, commercial ones can be too much for me.
There is one exception.
J.K.’s Scrumpy is my favorite cider of all time and it does taste sweet. I even put it in my Fantasy Draft last year! Which reminds me, I haven’t yet done one for 2015. Time is ticking… YIKES!
Why is it my favorite? It tastes like the unfiltered cider you get at an apple orchard! We’ve given it to friends to try and I can’t think of a single person who didn’t agree that this is the best cider around. The cidery is out of Michigan. We hoped that they had a tasting room for us to try out on our next visit to the mitten; but alas, they didn’t at the time. It appears that they *might* now; but it’s hard to tell.
In any case, a trip to Total Wine not too long ago prompted us to try these two specialties!
We were looking for local seasonal brews at the time when I spotted these. It was a no-brainer to make purchase these new-to-us J.K. ciders because they come in at around $6/bottle whereas some specialty bombers of beer go for $10 to $20!
When we finally decided to crack them open one evening, I told Rob that we needed taste them side-by-side to compare. I wish I would have taken a photo so I could show you the extreme difference in color of these two nectars; but it was so dark in our living room that I’m sure the comparison would have been lost anyway.
Let’s have a look…
I’ll start with this one because after pouring them, it was lighter in color. I’d like to say that the descriptions helped guide me, too; but the truth is that the color was the sole reason I chose it as our first taste.
I thought that Rob would not be a fan because of the cinnamon. Really, who doesn’t like cinnamon?!
I do love the descriptions on the backs of their bottles as well as their words of advice… especially this time of year.
“Please enjoy a cider with someone you love and perhaps someone you don’t. Please mend a bridge, extend a hand and be good to one another.”
That’s advice we can all heed.
Northern Neighbour – Saskatoon Cuvée:
I feel really ignorant about the crops of our neighbors to the north. I had never heard of a Saskatoon before. I probably assumed it was one who resided in Saskatchewan! A search on The Google resulted in photos and descriptions of a berry very similar to the blueberry, but also called endearingly “the little purple apple.” Mmmm…
OH WOW! We loved them both. Neither of us could pick a favorite. They are still made in that wonderfully nostalgic unfiltered-farmhouse-orchard-cider-style. The Winterruption seemed much lighter in style. The spices were festive, yet still subtle enough that the cinnamon didn’t turn Rob off.
The Northern Neighbour is much darker in color, assumingly from the dark “little purple apples” added to the mix. The collaboration is a unique, yet perfect one.
These ciders alone could bring peace on earth. Well, at least collaborating with neighbors and suggesting kindness on the back of a bottle is a start. 😉
What beverages (alcoholic or non-alcoholic) do you find make you feel most festive over the holiday season?
wonder if I could find them here? They sound lovely, and I agree with you, I can’t stomach the overly sweet commercial ciders you find here
I’m an eggnog fan, of course, but last year I got a bottle of peppermint bark chocolate liqueur that was AMAZING. I put it in hot cocoa. 😀
Christmas morning I make Baileys and Coffee – it’s the only time of year I have Bailey’s because I could have it in my coffee every morning!
I find that if I have a cider beer like that, I often can drink just one because of the sweetness.
I’m definitely more of a cider person than a beer person! I wonder if I can get these in Virginia. I haven’t seen them but I’ll have to look! I’m also heading to Minnesota for the holidays so maybe I can get one while I’m there!