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beerThere are two things I am always in search of: a perfect cider and a perfect bourbon stout/porter/e

In the second I am constantly disappointed.  I like high-alcohol beer, and I love bourbon, and I love sweet, malty beers, but every bourbon beer I’ve had either has no bourbon flavor or is harsh.  Like Maker’s 46 harsh.

But the first I constantly dance around.  I have had a lot of good ciders, and hard cider isn’t a new concept.  Much like Reinheitsgebot beers, there are centuries of tradition and practice to build upon.  Strongbow is delicious, Smith & Forge is rather enjoyable, and there are plenty of other good ciders out there.

But for someone reason, I never find the one that is perfect.  If I enjoy the taste immensely, there is something odd about its production.  If the taste is good but not perfect, the production is usually very respectable.

jaked cider houseUndergraduate hall represent!  Roy’s Boys for Life!

When I saw that the winery right outside of town (that I didn’t know about) made a hard cider, and I could buy it at the grocery store, and the winery is completely off-grid, and I needed to do a beer review because this is a beer blog in part, I knew I needed to try it.

And I crossed my fingers that the tradition of regional wineries having…a little bit off wine…

Crimson Sunset Winery Jacked Cider house

Appearance: It’s got color, but it seems lighter than your traditional cider.  Like, it isn’t anemic looking, but it isn’t as bright or dark as other ciders.

jaked cider house2It’s also a bit cloudy because it’s unfiltered.

Scent: Apple cider and that scent of unfiltered cider.  I know unfiltered is all the rage right now but I…am not on board.

Taste: It is a nice taste of a hard cider sweetened with honey that is muddled by being unfiltered.  I get it, unfiltered proves it’s all natural, but I am just not digging it.  I really wanted to love this cider – because I love this area more and more – but I am just not digging it.

Quality: Going out-of-order because I want to make sure everyone understands that this is quality stuff.  It tastes natural, it has a good mix of sweet and dry, and for some it may be exactly what you are looking for…

Drinkability: …but I’m having a hard time finishing even the glass I poured.  Filtering isn’t evil and it doesn’t distract from being natural.  Filtering isn’t the enemy, and being unfiltered took what would be a brilliant cider and made it just undrinkable for me.  Maybe I’m not in the mood, maybe my palette isn’t refined enough for unfiltered, maybe I’m just horrible, but I can’t enjoy it.  Maybe tomorrow.

Overall: I’m going to give it a B-.  I want to like it, and it is quality, but I just don’t like it.  At all.

I may revise tomorrow but right now, I’m calling it like I taste it.  It’s just not enjoyable.  Quality, yet, but in the same way that organic quinoa is quality but no one really enjoys it.

To seeking the ever unfindable!
– Robby