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Howell Road – Tropical

Cider Profile:

Name: Howell Road – Tropical
Sampled August 2021

Brand: Howell Road Cider Co
Type: Flavoured – Mixed Tropical
Location of Brewing: St. George, ON
ABV: 5.8%
Website Link: brantviewapples.com
Ingredients: Ontario apples, guavas,
pineapples, oranges, mangos, sulphites

Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 473ml (can)
Availability: Seasonal – Howell Road retail
and online store

Flavour: Mixed tropical
Colour:  Transparent sunshine yellow with peach hues
Carbonation: Medium streaming bubbles


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Sweet tropical notes, with pineapple and orange specifically. Banana hints.
Initial Taste: Light bite. Semi-sweet medley of bright dessert apples with creamy pineapple, orange, mango coming through. Banana hints among the balanced, mixed fruits.
After Taste: Apple weakens quickly. Slightly tart guava comes through. Cleans from the palate quickly.
On ice: Reduced carbonation. Thinner apple flavour and base.

Additional Notes:  Howell Road’s Tropical Cider is a light, semi-sweet medley of exotic fruit flavours that is still somehow clean to consume. The cider starts off more orange, pineapple and mango focused – and weirdly with some banana notes though it’s not an ingredient. The apples are also stronger in the front, quickly weakening. A bright flash of tart guava comes out in the finish, but it empties out quickly and smoothly. 

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 3.5
Sour – 2.5
Crisp – 3
Dry – 2
Fruity – 3.5  

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – County Cider – Blood Orange
More Sour –  Steel Town – Vay Kay
More Dry – Collective Arts – Hurricane Cider
More Crisp – Coffin Ridge – Tropical Hopped

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Brickworks – Pineapple Agave

Cider Profile:

Name: Brickworks – Pineapple Agave
Sampled April 2021

Brand:  Brickworks Ciderhouse
Type: Flavoured – Pineapple
Location of Brewing: Toronto, ON
ABV: 5.5%
Website Link: theciderhouse.ca
Ingredients: Cider, water, sugars (agave syrup,
concentrated pineapple juice), sulphites

Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 473ml (can)
Availability: LCBO Summer Mixpack 2021
Flavour: Pineapple + agave syrup
Colour:  Deep golden orange
Carbonation: Medium streaming bubbles


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Brickworks apple cider base. Hints of caramelized pineapple.
Initial Taste: Minimal bite. Quick juicy apple – familiar Brickworks base. Light agave. Minimal pineapple that tastes slightly caramelized.
After Taste: Pineapple becomes slightly stronger as the apple weakens. Brown sugar notes to finish. Cleaner ending.
On ice: Reduced carbonation and flavour.

Additional Notes:  The Pineapple Agave by Brickworks is 1 of 2 new releases in the 2021 Summer Mixpack available at the LCBO. It has a very familiar apple cider base that can be found in their Batch 1904 and other offerings. The agave seems to be stronger than the pineapple, with the latter being more mild and tamed. The agave makes everything taste caramelized – and more so brown sugary near the finish. A light offering that is refreshing and clean but it may disappoint some who want a strong pineapple experience.

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

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Chill Street – Its a Vibe
More Sour – Coffin Ridge – Tropical Hopped
More Dry – Slabtown – Pineapple Mimosa
More Crisp – 

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Chill St – It’s A Vibe

Cider Profile:

Name: Chill St – It’s A Vibe
Sampled May 2021

Brand: Chill Street Cider
Type: Flavoured – Pineapple and Wine
Location of Brewing: Elmsdale, NS
ABV: 7%
Website Link: chillstreetcraftbeverageco.com
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 473ml (can)
Availability: Chill St. Retail, Online Store and locally in Nova Scotia
Flavour: Pineapple + Pinot Grigio
Colour: Translucent, Dark yellow
Carbonation: Large, frequently streaming bubbles.  More on ice. 


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Strong aroma. Candied pineapple on top of a slightly astringent white wine.
Initial Taste: Light bite from carbonation. A sweet fruity pineapple with some creaminess. Candied and not a particularly natural pineapple flavour.
After Taste: Pineapple reduces and pinot notes surface, though remaining still very “fruit wine like” in nature.  Some floral elements, finishing soft.
On ice: Dramatically reduced flavour.

Additional Notes:  The “it’s a vibe” by Chill Street is a light, fruit wine inspired blend. With only a little bright apple, it’s much more of a cooler than a cider option. Pineapple is sweet but not sugary, balanced well with the Pinot Grigio. Easily crushable but still somewhat sweet. Quite watered-down when on-ice. 

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

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – No Boats on Sunday – Peach
More Sour – Revel – Mithras
More Dry – Slabtown – Pineapple Mimosa
More Crisp – 7 Shores – Peach Vanilla

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Steel Town – Vay Kay

Cider Profile:

Name: Steel Town – Vay Kay
Sampled April 2021

Brand:  Steel Town Cider Co.
Type: Flavoured – Mixed Fruit
Location of Brewing: Hamilton, ON
ABV: 5%
Website Link: www.steeltowncider.com
Ingredients: Pressed apples, mango juice, pineapple juice,
lime juice, coconut, yeast

Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 355ml (can)
Availability: Steel Town online and retail store
Flavour: Tropical mixed fruits
Colour:  Cloudy neon yellow
Carbonation: Large infrequently streaming


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Strong aroma. Heavy tequila, pineapple and coconut notes.
Initial Taste: Medium bite from carbonation and acidity. Quick juicy pineapple and mango, followed by a natural coconut flavour.  Some sourness.
After Taste: Becomes more mango focused with coconut remaining the same. Tequila astringency and flavours come through more so. Funky finish that has a dry apple base but some sweetness from tropical fruits. Saltiness lingers.
On ice: Reduced carbonation. Coconut becomes more pronounced. Less sour.

Additional Notes:  Steel Towns Vay Kay is a tropical escape in a can. Heavy pineapple and mango juices kick off the drinking experience, with the coconut then coming through and staying awhile. You get the tequila barrel aging near the finish with a medium flavour and astringency. Funky and sour but very palatable – less than some other Steel Town offerings. Memories of a gose beer with the sea salt added.

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 2.5
Sour – 4
Crisp – 2
Dry – 3.5
Fruity – 4.5

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Slabtown – Pineapple Mimosa
More Sour – 
More Dry – Hard Way – Loco Blanco
More Crisp – Coffin Ridge – Tropical Hopped

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Slabtown – Pineapple Mimosa

Cider Profile:

Name: Slabtown – Pineapple Mimosa
Sampled September 2020 (Updated January 2021)

Brand:  Slabtown Cider Co.
Type: Flavoured – Pineapple
Location of Brewing: Uxbridge, ON
ABV: 6.2%
Website Link:
Ingredients: N/A
Gluten Free: Yes
Sugar Content: N/ASize(s) available: 750ml (bottle)
Availability: Slabtown Retail Store
Flavour: Pineapple
Colour:  Hazy blonde
Carbonation: Small, frequently streaming bubbles. Some foam. 


Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Fermented pineapple with black pepper hints. Some dessert apples.
Initial Taste: Mild bite from carbonation. Smooth, creamy pineapple. Pineapple fermentation notes are minimal. Clean green apple flavour without the sour notes. Some apple tannins.
After Taste: Pineapple continues, becomes sweeter. Vanilla hints. Ends creamy, off-dry. Mild spice notes.
On ice: Carbonation reduced. Pineapple punch is weakened. More apple notes come through.

Additional Notes:  Slabtown’s Pineapple Mimosa is a very pineapple focused offering, with mild apple notes, that remind us of green apple varieties. With a champagne yeast added, it adds a light sparkle and taste but its not heavy like a true sparkling wine. Ends quite creamy. Light body, easy drinking.  Of the two bottles we had, one was smooth (2021) the other had more pineapple fermentation notes which had some bitterness (2020).

Rated on a scale of 1-5
Sweet – 3
Sour – 2.5
Crisp – 2
Dry – 3
Fruity – 4

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – County – Blackberry Peach Cider
More Sour – Coffin Ridge – Tropical Hopped Cider
More Dry – Ernest – Speachless 
More Crisp – Pommies – Mimosa Cider

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1911 – Tropical

Cider Profile:

Name:  1911 – Tropical
Sampled January 2020

Brand: 1911 (Beak and Skiff)
Type:
Flavoured – Tropical Fruits
Location of Brewing:
Lafayette, NY
ABV:
6.5%
Website Link:
1911established.com
Ingredients:
Fresh Pressed Cider, sugar, malic acid, natural hlavours, sulfites to protect freshness, lightly carbonated
Gluten Free:
Yes
Sugar Content: N/A

Size(s) available: 473mL (can)
Availability:
New York State
Flavour:
Tropical
Colour:  
Sunshine yellow
Carbonation:
Small, infrequently streaming bubbles



Cider Crate Tasting Notes:

Smell: Medium aroma. Sweet apple, pineapple and a hint of coconut
Initial Taste: Light bite. Sweet and creamy apple with strong elements of pineapple. Clean.
After Taste:  Longer lingering with a strong pineapple finish.  Almost pineapple juice-like at times without the pulpiness.  Slight hint of coconut in the aftertaste.
On ice: Slight reduction of carbonation on ice, rest remains the same.

Additional Notes:  The 1911 Established Tropical is an extra fruity and summery drink.  Very clean apple, with a 4 of 6 sweetness rating on the can, its pineapple first – with smooth, sweet apple second.  Aftertaste lasts a long time, but not filmy.  Unique as it’s hard to get such a clean tasting flavoured cider.

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

Next recommendations:
More Sweet – Ace Cider – Pineapple
More Sour – Graft – Fields and Flowers
More Dry – Rootstock – Belgian Cider
More Crisp – 

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