Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Cider Review: Two Towns Cosmic Currant and Threadbare Cidery and Meadery's 412 City Cider

Good morning, Cider Friends! It’s December! We’ve made it through everything from Thanksgiving Day through Giving Tuesday. For me, that means I had my first Snow Day in 
years, and more snow could be coming soon. I’m starting to count down to the Winter Solstice. We are less than three weeks away from the shortest day of the year. I want to count down the time until the Sun starts its return by nesting, so I’m doing at least one small nesting activity each day through December 21st. 

Whether you’re waiting for the Solstice like me, decking the halls with holly, starting your Hannukah preparations, or grading like mad before the end of the semester, this time of year is undeniably busy. That’s kinda why I want to make my year end as home-oriented and cozy as I can. That brings us to this week’s two ciders. I wanted very different styles for different kinds of homey evenings.

We’re starting with 2 Towns Cosmic Currant.

2 Towns sent me a six pack of this cider for review. After tonight, they will all be gone. I shared them with a few people at my birthday party and a couple quiet nights at home. I got good intell from everyone who sampled. 

This company brands itself as Northwest Craft Cider, and I think that’s an accurate and evocative set of descriptors. I like the paragraph of introduction I found on the website. 
At 2 Towns Ciderhouse we believe that the long history of cidermaking demands respect and deserves to be done right. Starting with the highest quality, whole ingredients from local farms, we take no shortcuts in crafting our ciders. We refuse to add processed sugars, concentrates or artificial flavors, and instead use slow, cold fermentation methods to allow the fruit to speak for itself. As a family-owned company, we are committed to the growth of our team and enrichment of our communities. We take pride in producing a true Northwest craft cider.
I have a ton of previous reviews for 2 Towns ciders. Here’s the list.

Hollow Jack’d:

Afton Field:

La Mûre:

Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy:

Cidre Bouche:



Bright Cider:

Hop and Stalk:

You can visit 2 Towns Ciderhouse Website. That’s where you can find the most current information about the ciders and events:

Here’s the official description. 
Crafted with a transcendent blend of Oregon-grown cranberries, black currants, and Northwest apples, Cosmic Currant’s complex profile takes you on a voyage to the cosmos. Deep ruby red hues radiate with a hint of cane fruit sweetness and earthy cassis liqueur, finishing with a robust cranberry tannin. This brilliant winter warmer creates a celestial cider experience best enjoyed on a crisp, clear night under a blanket of stars. 6.2% ABV.

Appearance: brilliant, blackberry, few bubbles

I see some bubbles in the glass, but the real drama from this cider’s look has to be that gorgeous color. It reminds me of blackberry juice, raspberries, and cranberry juice.

Aromas: berries, spices, green herbs

This cider smells like berries, ripe apples, spices and something greenly herbal. Another of my co-tastesr said that the aromas remind them of a berry tea.

Sweetness/dryness: semi-sweet

Everyone who tasted this cider agreed that it’s semi-sweet but the Cosmic Currant does not taste sugary.

Flavors and drinking experience: 

The Cosmic Currant brings super high acidity to the party! It balances them out with Currant tannins.Everyone who tasted enjoyed how fruity it is, but I must reiterate my fondness for the tart wild curling acidity of this cider. The whole experience is very cranberry, but I can still taste apple and currant as well. 

Other tasters particularly noticed how hearty and full bodied the Cosmic Currant is. I heard some folks pipe up about the very pleasurable level of sparkle. What unified folks though was that balance of sweet and tart. That made this cider a big hit.

Next up, I’m sharing my notes on Threadbare Cidery and Meadery’s 412 Cider

Threadbare Cidery and Meadery grew out of an existing Pittsburgh distillery, Wigle Whiskey. The cidery has been part of the company for at least 5 years. This cider and a few of Threadbare Cidery’s others were shared with me at Cider Con for review.

Visit the company online to read about all of the ciders and other beverages:

I have one previous review of a Threadbare Cider. 

Here’s what I thought of the Dry:

Here’s how Threadbare describes this cider
412 City Cider is made with 3,500 pounds of wild crab apples and other wild apples foraged by 412 Food Rescue from urban trees in the city of Pittsburgh. The apples were pressed by our friends at Godfrey Run Orchard and fermented with our house yeast culture to impart notes of citrus and stone fruit; resulting in a hard cider with beautiful earthy tannic structure and sharp acidity. 
Yeast: blend of wild type and white wine yeast 
Tasting Notes: earthy, sharp acidity, stone fruit, citrus, straw 
Alc/Vol: 6.2%

Appearance: Hazy lemon drop color

The color reminded my co-taster of lemon drop candies, and my memories back them up entirely. I remember getting special french lemon candies that had exactly this moonglow shade and opacity. I’ll call this cider hazy with a few visible bubbles.

Aromas: Barnyard, floral, tropical, funky

This cider is grooving with barnyard funk. It did not come to play around. There are many many fans of wild fermentations who will absolutely be thrilled by this farminess. But there are other notes like tropical fruit, petrol, minerals, and flowers.

 Dryness/sweetness: Dry

This cider is fermented to dryness! The acidity massively underlines that dry austerity.

Flavors and drinking experience: minerals, high acidity, wild funk

Wow! I couldnt ask for a cider more the opposite of my earlier review! This cider is completely dry with more mineral than fruit notes. I do get some dry citrus and peach notes, but the cider is more dominated by petrol, acidity, and more of that wild funkiness from the aroma. 

This high acid cider has an austere body and zesty sparkle. It’s aggressively playful with a quick finish. I paired it with a pumpkin cake and the very dramatic season 2 finale of The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. I think the show’s intensity needed a nice dry cider to contrast it, and the 412 City Cider was ready for the job.