Saturday, October 12, 2013

Shilling & Company - Hard Cider

The best cider is hard cider.
In case you haven't noticed, there are a lot of tasty ciders to be found in your local grocer's cold case lately. Lots of local craftsmen are making good use of one of the Pacific Northwest's finest resources: apples. Awesome.

The mega-booze corporations are putting out quite a number of mass production cider-like brews, too. Every time I see a new cider on the shelf, I inspect the label to see exactly where it was made. I'm really only interested in buying cider made by local craftsmen.

Sometimes, it's hard to tell if a brewer, or in this case a cider maker, is a real homegrown craftsman, or just some figment of a PR firm's imagination. Those mega-corps are trying really hard to mask their involvement in what appear to be seat-of-the-pants start-ups. They also know what hot buttons to hit on: family, sustainability, locally sourced, etc. 

Today, I tried Schilling & Company's Hard Cider. The company hails from Seattle and there's a nice history about the co-owners on their website. The story is about two buddies working as corporate drones who decide to chuck the suits and start making cider. Interestingly, one of those besties is the great grandson of the founder of Schilling Spice Company. There's clearly a possibility of some big time corporate connections there, but hey, not everybody can be from a Nebraska trailer park like your's truly. In any case, I suppose I could do a little more research, but I'm just going to hope the history of the company is authentic. I won't even hold their MBA's against them.

The cider poured from 12 oz. can into my glass a clear, bright, golden yellow color with lots of carbonation.

Aroma was apple, apple and more apple. No alcohol smell.

Taste was crisp and sweet apple. At 6.5% ABV, I didn't detect much of a alcohol taste at all.

I prefer cider with a bit more of a dry finish, but this is a decent change up. Nice and juicy. I had it with breakfast and it went perfect with my pancakes. This would make an excellent mimosa substitute. I liked it. I'm giving Schilling Hard Cider a BeerGuyPDX rating of 3 crushed cans out of 4.


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