Review of Grand Illusion Hard Cider’s Street Magic, a hopped grapefruit cider. I have previously tried their Mystic Citra Pineapple and Blue Illusion.
Cider: Street Magic
Cidery: Grand Illusion Hard Cider
Cidery Location: Carlisle PA
How Supplied: six pack of 12oz cans (and draft)
Style: American craft cider from dessert apples, with Citra & Centennial hops and grapefruit
>>This is a review of a sample can provided to Cider Says by Grand Illustion. Although I will take care to treat it the same as any other review, there is always the potential for bias as I received it for free. The only consideration I knowingly made was pushing this up in my cider review cue. I love free stuff, especially cider! Want your cider or cider-related product reviewed here? Contact me.<<
Availability: in Pennsylvania, primarily at their taproom, but soon, at some other locations
Cider Description: This mouth-puckering, subtropical grapefruit cider is pure sunshine. The balance achieved between tart and sweet complement the citrus and floral notes provided by Citra and Centennial hops.
Cidery Description: We are Grand Illusion, a hard cider production company located in Carlisle, PA. We use fresh pressed apples from Adams and York County to create magical ciders for all to enjoy. Our taproom in downtown Carlisle has become a destination, with 15 ciders, 5 beers, and 8 wines – all on draft and all from Pennsylvania.
Here is an article from a local newspaper on the cidery. They serve both their own ciders and ciders from other cideries at their taproom; see their tap list here.
Price: n/a (retails for ~ $44 / case, likely ~ $11 / six pack)
Where Bought: n/a
Where Drank: home
How Found: the cidery owners contacted me
First Impression: Light yellow hue. Low carbonation. Smells of hops with hints of lemon, orange, and grapefruit.
Tasting Notes: On the drier side of semi-dry. Light bodied. Moderate tartness. High acidity. Moderate bitterness. Hints of sourness. No funk or tannins. Notes of hops, citrus, and grapefruit. Long bitter hoppy finish. Moderate hops intensity and overall flavor intensity. Low to moderate complexity. Low apple flavor. Moderate to high sessionability.
My Opinion: I wasn’t personally a fan. It was too bitter for my liking, without enough sweetness to counter it. My husband liked it better, but we both preferred the pineapple hopped one (Mystic Citra Pineapple), as it was less bitter, more sweet, and more complex. Same as Mystic Citra Pineapple, I think this would appeal best to beer drinkers, and tasted less sweet than the labeled 17 grams of sugar. The great thing about the cider industry right now is that there are so many options; every cider or cidery won’t appeal to everyone, but there will be others out there that will. Grand Illusion’s ciders are doing well on untappd and such, so there are definitely plenty of folks who enjoy their ciders even if they weren’t my personal favorite.
Most Similar to: a hopped version of Cascadia Grapefruit Tangerine
Closing Notes: Of the three I tried, their Mystic Citra Pineapple was my favorite. I’m curious to see the evolution of their cidery and ciders over time.
Have you tried hopped cider? What did you think?