Tag Archives: 8%

A Tale of Two Ciders

Hard ciders have been growing in popularity along with craft beer during this recent boom, though at a much smaller percentage. Years ago your selection was limited to old English brands then Woodchuck came on the scene and started to dominate. Now there are a plethora of companies making cider and 2 “local” ones that I’ll be trying tonight. My wife has been a cider lover for a long time now and I’ve been meaning to steal one of hers to review and that day has finally come.

The main difference between beer and cider is the source of the alcohol. Beer uses the sugar from malted barley while hard ciders rely on the sugar in apple juice. Don’t think this means hard ciders are light, or low alcohol, in fact the Oliver Original cider I’ll be trying tonight is 8%!

I have come to believe that there is a general perception that hard ciders are for women or something like that. Please note, I am not saying this is my perception nor am I trying to start any kind of sexist war, just stating something I’ve observed. Honestly, I think it’s nonsense and according to some facts from Angry Orchard it is equally consumed by men and women. Anything can be for anyone it’s just all about what their personal preference is. My hope is that this post will bring info about hard cider to our readers and encourage them to give it a go. That said, on to the reviews!

Brewery: Oliver Winery
Beer Cider: Beanblossom Hard Cider Original
Style: Cider
ABV: 8%
Calories: ~250

Fantastically clear and very pale yellow/gold color that honestly looks a lot like Bud Light. No head what so ever, though I’m not super sure if cider’s should have a head on them. It does look a lot like apple juice though.

Very fruity aroma with lots of sugary action and a noticeable amount of alcohol.

Pleasantly sweet taste that screams apple. I was concerned that this was going to be sickening sweet, like Georgia sweet tea, but am glad to find that’s not the case though It is certainly sweeter than most beers.

Very light body with an extremely crisp and refreshing mouth feel. This is probably my favorite part of this drink.

I digg this and can see myself drinking more of them after mowing the lawn on hot summer days, a spot usually reserved for a Rivertown Helles. Though the 8% this thing packs could make for an interesting afternoon, I’m about half way through and definitely feeling it.A few words on packaging before moving on to Angry Orchard. This is a very interesting can, bottle, canottle, cabottle? bottan? It’s a tall aluminum can, I dig the convergence of cans and bottles in this format and would like to see some beers packaged this way as well.

Brewery: Angry Orchard (Boston Beer Company)
Cider: Crisp Apple
Style: Cider
ABV: 5%
Calories: 280

Much richer golden yellow hue then the Oliver had. Also packs noticeably more “head” then Oliver did, it’s not really a normal head as much as just a ring of bubbles around the top rim.

Very strong apple smell with loads of sweet apples, but not much else.

Overly sweet apple flavor that is over done in my opinion. Like the aroma there is nothing else happening here except for the apples.

Nicely crisp, smooth, and light body feel.

Between these two the Oliver is the clear winner in my opinion. It’s got a much better overall experience and more alcohol, on the upside for this beer is that it’s cheaper, session-worthy, and massively available wherever any beer is sold.

I mentioned earlier how both of these ciders were “local”. I’m using “local” because Bloomington, Indiana isn’t in the greater Cincinnati area but is only 2 1/2 hours off. Angry Orchard claims to be from Cincinnati, Ohio. This threw me for a great loop when my wife first spotted it in Asheville, North Carolina of all places. I knew that no place making cider in Cincinnati could have popped up completely under my nose without me knowing at all. After doing a little digging online I quickly discovered that Angry Orchard is a Sam Adam’s product. So yes, it is “local” as it is brewed at Sam Adam’s facility in Over-The-Rhine.

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Beer Review: Three Floyds’ Moloko

This week I’m trying two different stouts from a company that mostly makes super hoppy beers and one incredibly rare stout (not one of the two I’m having). For the unfamiliar Three Floyds is a regional brewery in Munster, Indiana which is sadly on the opposite end of Indiana from Cincinnati. Three Floyds (aka 3F aka FFF) mostly produces IPAs and pale ales with lots of extra hops, beers like Zombie Dust, Alpha King, Arctic Panzer Wolf. On the flip side of that is the “legend” of Dark Lord, a Russian imperial stout released 1 day a year in a massive festival known as Dark Lord Day. I say “legend” because Dark Lord is either the greatest stout some people have ever had or an overly sweet soy sauce substitute. Another thing backing that legend is that you can trade it for just about anything online.

Last night I had 3Fs’ Moloko milk stout. Milk stouts (aka sweet stout) are so named because they contain, wait for it… milk! Shocking I know, well actually they contain lactose which is essentially the same thing. So any lactose intolerant folks should avoid milk stouts. What does milk add to a beer? Unfermentable sugars which result in a sweeter taste and creamier bodied brew.

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Beer Review : Rivertown Winter Ale

Last night Rivertown Brewing tapped this year’s first keg of their much loved Winter Ale. Today I headed down to the, crazily packed, tap room for a pint of this. I also scored a growler of Roebling and 2 bottles of Ville De Rivere Geuze so look forward to those reviews as well.
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Beer Review: Oskar Blues Old Chub

Continuing the hookup from Oskar Blues I’m trying their Scotch ale, Old Chub, tonight and tomorrow night will bring my review of Dale’s Pale Ale. This is a strong scotch ale, aka a wee heavy, and like all scotch ales feature lots of malt and almost no hops. This is historically due to the fact that hops don’t grow in Scotland and were expensive to import. Enough of that, onto the beer.

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Beer Review: Oskar Blues Deviant Dale’s India Pale Ale

Oskar Blues knows how to make an entrance! 50+ events over 2 weeks plus hooking us up with some samples! Oskar Blues was kind enough to hook Josh up and he was kind enough to share, so look forward to reviews of Dales Pale Ale, Mama’s Little Yellow Pils, and Old Chub Scotch Ale. I also previously reviewed G’Knight Imperial Red, which I scored last time I was in Nashville, and I loved it! As far as I know all Oskar Blues beer are available in Cinci now except for Ten FIDY, their stout, which should be here in one or two weeks. Tonight I’m checking out Deviant Dale’s India Pale Ale, which I had a few months ago but decided not to give it a full review because it wasn’t available around here. Now that that’s changed let’s get drinking!

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Beer Review: The Alchemist Heady Topper

I debated posting this review because this blog is about to be what to drink around Cincinnati. Sadly the closest you can get this beer to Cincinnati is Vermont, which is not at all close. In the end I decided to go forward with this post because Cincinnatians may travel to Vermont or may be decided to try and trade for this beer, which is relatively easy to do. I scored this can by trading the recent Stone Enjoy By 11.9.12 for this. Another reason I posted this is because I am aware that many of our readers come from across the country and a few from around the world.

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Beer Review: Trappistes Rochefort 10

Newer readers may not know this but Belgian ales are my love, passion, and absolute favorite style. I’ve reviewed quite a few Belgians (full list) on this site already, including my review of Trappistes Rochefort 8. I also wrote a long post on the history of Trappist beers which you should check out if you’re unfamiliar with Belgian ales or Trappist beers (which the following beer is one of).

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Beer Review: Founders Breakfast Stout

Founders has become pretty well known for it’s stouts, especially the breakfast stouts. The Kentucky breakfast stout and Canadian breakfast stout are some of the most well reviewed stouts out there, usually referred to by their initials KBS and CBS. They’re highly sought after and frequently traded. Luckily, when they are available you can usually get some here in the Greater Cincinnati area. Also the Moerlein Lager house will have KBS on tap September 10th!!! Anyway, I’m wasn’t lucky enough to score the Kentucky or Canadian varieties but here comes the review for the plain old Breakfast Stout.

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Beer Review: Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale

The story behind this beer is that it was originally the Stone 11th anniversary ale but everyone loved to so much they brought it back year round. This is also the newest of the Stone year-round beers.

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Beer Review: Oskar Blues G’Knight

OK, so I feel bad. I keep reviewing beers that you can’t get around here. But hey, if you travel through somewhere and see this then you’ll know to grab it and bring it home to share! This is also an awesome beer with a great story.

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