Thursday, March 13, 2014

Cider Review: Naked Flock Citra

I'm back to reviewing a New York state cider as my beautiful state gets pummeled with more winter weather. I know March isn't actually part of spring for upstate New York, so I'm reminding myself of what's great about New York with a cider made from 100% NY Hudson Valley apples. I'm returning to Naked Flock for their Citra cider. But someday, someday, it will actually be warm again here.
My previous reviews of Naked Flock Ciders feature their Original (check out the review here: http://alongcameacider.blogspot.com/2013/05/cider-review-naked-flock-original-and.html ) and their Draft ciders (which can be found right here: http://alongcameacider.blogspot.com/2013/09/cider-review-naked-flock-draft-cider.html) .


Naked Flock's Citra does not appear on their webpage. I was able to get a small official description but it does not give much information, "Naturally fermented from fresh pressed Hudson Valley Apples, not concentrate. It is unpasteurized with no colorants, malts, spirits or grape alcohol added. Fermented with Champagne yeast and flavored with Citra hops." You can read more about the cidery here, but be forewarned that the information is limited:

http://www.applewoodwinery.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=91&Itemid=64 

I'd actually recommend skipping the Naked Flock website and instead using their Facebook page for current information. This page does get updated regularly and features tastings and events as well as product information:
 
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Naked-Flock-Hard-Cider/254809707939076

Okay! On to the cider!

Appearance: hazy very light yellow

This very bubbly cider looks like a perfect real lemonade in the glass. Light yellow and hazy with plenty of bubbles. Hazy ciders, including this one, can be so lovely. I wish more cider makers would not fear anything shy of brilliant clarity.

Aromas: no apple, only hops

Citra offers many exciting and zesty smells, but none of them are apple of any kind. This tends to be a characteristic of hopped ciders. No apple on the aroma and varied levels of apple in the ciders taste. What I did taste however was really varied, fresh, and exciting.  Aromas of fresh mint, lime, yellow green grass, and just bold summery freshness were all over the place. Mouthwatering good smells.

Sweetness: Semi-dry

Definitely the driest of the Naked Flock cider's I've tried. Perhaps I'm not tasting sweetness much in this one in particular because I am tasting so many other flavors, but this is definitely a cider that will work for those of us who are not very big fans of sweetness in cider.

Flavors and drinking experience: Big citrus, acidity, other fruits, refreshing

Like many hopped ciders the Citra by Naked Flock tastes gorgously of lemons, limes, and grapefruits. My husband and assistant cider taster Alex noticed Lychee. I think he's right. The cider is super acidic, but I expected that because all Naked Flock ciders have very high levels of acidity. I think it works better in the Citra. This has to be my favorite Naked Flock so far and by a wide margin.

For food pairing recommendations, I have to go with a sandwich and awesome kettle cooked potato chips. The saltiness of chips and wonderful varieties of texture in a truly good sandwich will complement zesty and refreshing flavors of Naked Flock's Citra. I had a chickpea patty with mayo, tomato, and avocado with mine and it worked out beautifully. I'd also pair this cider with whatever makes you feel warm if you're going to drink it during cold weather. Ideally though this is a summer cider meant for drinking after hikes, by lakes, or after pick up summer games of kickball, Ultimate Frisbee, or what have you. For this not-so-athletic person, I'd drink mine after a big hike. In any case, I can whole-heartedly recommend the Citra!  

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