I had the trying task of tasting hard ciders for an upcoming Boise Weekly story—once an American tradition, hard cider is making a comeback. I thought I'd pass on some of the tasting notes I scribbled down while swilling all that fermented apple juice. I've also include some of the places where you can grab a bottle or two. You're welcome.
And pick up a copy of tomorrow's Boise Weekly to find out why Idaho is ripe for a hard cider industry.
Some notes on ciders I’ve recently tasted:
•Spire, Washington “Fizzy, amber, with strong, ripe apple nose and a simple fruit flavor. A decent starter hard cider.”
•Clos Normand, France: “Caramel colored, light in flavor, with more acid. Smells of green rather than ripe apples. More complex than Spire, more tart, tannic, slightly earthy.”
•Dupont Reserve, France: “My favorite. Champagne-like, dry, slightly tannic, with just the right hint of apple and sweetness.”
•Aspall, England: “Light in color, like pale beer with a mildly tart flavor and lots of fizz.”
•Strong Bow, England: “Beer-like. Fizzy, refreshing but less complex than a French cider.”
•Sagardo Naturala Natural Basque Cider, Spain: “Slightly cloudy, golden color, dry, sour, barnyardy with barely a hint of apple. Could be great with spicy Asian, Indian food and rich Basque seafood. Some friends who tasted this hated it, calling it ‘off’ or vinegary.”
Places to purchase or quaff hard cider:
•Brewforia Beer Market: 3030 E. Overland Road #100, Meridian, 208-888-7668
•The Basque Market: 608 W. Grove St., 208-433-1208
•Boise Co-op: 888 W. Fort Street, 208-472-4500
•Red Feather Lounge: 246 N. Eighth St., 208-429-6340
•Bardenay: 610 Grove St., 208-426-0538
•The Matador: 215 North Eighth St., 208-342-9988