Woodchuck Tank Series Belgian White

Review of Woodchuck Tank Series Belgian White.  They made this years ago, it went on hiatus, then they re-released it recently for a limited run.  I previously tried this pre-blog, plus I’ve had most of Woodchuck’s line-up (see here).

>>This is a review of a sample can provided to Cider Says by Woodchuck.  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.<<

Cider:  Tank Series, Belgian White
Cidery:  Woodchuck
Cidery Location:  Middlebury VT
ABV:  5.5%
How Supplied:  six pack of 12oz cans
Style:  American commercial cider from dessert apples, with Belgian beer yeast

Photo Feb 15, 6 35 37 PM Photo Feb 15, 6 35 55 PM Photo Feb 15, 6 35 46 PM

Availability:  semi wide release

Cider Description:  Crafted with a classic Belgian beer yeast, cloudy with a rich, golden huge, it presents a delicate aroma and taste, with coriander and orange notes.

Cidery Description:  Vermont Cider Company is a leading hard cider maker in the United States, with a state of the art cidery located in Middlebury, Vermont. Vermont Cider Company crafts a variety of ciders fora variety of consumers. There’s ultra-craft Vermont Cider Co., iconic Woodchuck, fruit-forward Wyder’s as well as the classic Magners Irish Cider and Blackthorn, rounding out our import offerings. Vermont Cider Company reinvigorated American hard cider in 1991, with the launch of Woodchuck, and stays focused on the category today through our commitment to crafting innovative and refreshing hard ciders. 

Price:  n/a (retails for $8.99 / six pack)
Where Bought:  n/a
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  it showed up

Photo Feb 15, 6 35 24 PM

First Impression:  Smells of orange with a hint of apple.  Hazy light orange brown hue.  Still (no carbonation).

Tasting Notes:  On the sweeter side of semi-dry.  Light to medium bodied.  Low tartness and acidity.  No sourness, bitterness, funk, or tannins.  Notes of apple juice, orange, and yeast.  Moderate length finish.  Moderate apple flavor and flavor intensity.  High sessionability.  Low to moderate complexity.

My Opinion:  Yum!  I really enjoyed it.  It actually tastes different than their other ciders, which all seem kinda similar to me.

Most Similar to:  It almost reminded me of a still French cider with orange.

Closing Notes:  This is one of my favorite Woodchuck special releases.

Have you tried Woodchuck Belgian White?  What did you think?

Woodchuck 802 Collection Lil’ Dry

Review of Woodchuck 802 Lil’ Dry.  It is my first time trying this, but I have had most of their line-up (see here).

>>This is a review of a sample can provided to Cider Says by Woodchuck.  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.<<

Cider:  802 Collection Lil’ Dry
Cidery:  Woodchuck
Cidery Location:  Middlebury VT
ABV:  5.1%
How Supplied:  four pack of 16oz cans
Style:  American commercial cider from fresh-pressed Vermont apples

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Availability:  only in Vermont to start, then limited in Maine and New Hampshire

Cider Description:  A traditional cider made with only fresh pressed Vermont juice from our orchard partners. Enjoy this semi-dry cider with good friends and good company.

See this article for detailed info.

Cidery Description:  Vermont Cider Company is a leading hard cider maker in the United States, with a state of the art cidery located in Middlebury, Vermont. Vermont Cider Company crafts a variety of ciders for a variety of consumers. There’s ultra-craft Vermont Cider Co., iconic Woodchuck, fruit-forward Wyder’s as well as the classic Magners Irish Cider and Blackthorn, rounding out our import offerings. Vermont Cider Company reinvigorated American hard cider in 1991, with the launch of Woodchuck, and stays focused on the category today through our commitment to crafting innovative and refreshing hard ciders.

Price:  n/a (retails for $10.99)
Where Bought:  n/a
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  it showed up

Photo Nov 16, 4 55 43 PM.jpg

First Impression:  Medium straw yellow hue.  Low carbonation.  Smells of sweet green apple.

Tasting Notes:  On the sweeter side of semi-dry.  Light bodied.  Moderate tartness.  Low acidity.  No bitterness, sourness, funk, or tannins.  Notes of green apple, honey, and tropical fruit.  Moderate tart finish.  Moderate apple flavor and flavor intensity.  High sessionability.  Low complexity.

My Opinion:  I really enjoyed it.  Never would have guessed it was Woodchuck actually, as it lacks the characteristics that I associate with every Woodchuck cider, as to me they all have a bit of the same baseline flavor (likely the same apple blend), and a fuller body than expected for the level of sweetness.  This tastes like it was made with a different blend of apples, maybe some heirloom ones thrown in with the dessert ones.  The quality was characteristic of their ‘Vermont Cider Company‘ line (released in 2016 and 2017).

Most Similar to:  Vermont Cider Co, Addison, although this was a touch drier, lighter bodied, and more craft tasting

Side Note:  They previously had a cider called ‘802’, a caramelized brown sugar type cider, but that was discontinued a few years back.  They also did this previously, re-using the name Summer Time, but having it be a different cider, ginger pear instead of blueberry.  As cool as using the ‘802’ area code is, I could see it being confusing.

Closing Notes:  Too bad it doesn’t sound like this will make it out to the PNW (or at least not soon).

Have you tried Woodchuck 802 Lil’ Dry?  What did you think?

Woodchuck Rosé

Review of Woodchuck Rosé.  It is my first time trying this, but I have had most of their line-up (see here).

>>This is a review of a sample can provided to Cider Says by Woodchuck.  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.<<

Cider:  Bubbly Rosé
Cidery:  Woodchuck
Cidery Location:  Middlebury VT
ABV:  6.1%
How Supplied:  six pack of 12oz cans
Style:  American commercial cider from dessert apples with “red” (red-fleshed?) apple juice, and purple carrot for color

Photo Oct 03, 6 48 09 PM Photo Oct 03, 6 48 20 PM Photo Oct 03, 6 48 27 PM

Availability:  wide release

Cider Description:  A bubbly, fruit-forward blush cider made with a blend of red apples delivering a crisp mouth feel.

Cidery Description:  Vermont Cider Company is a leading hard cider maker in the United States, with a state of the art cidery located in Middlebury, Vermont. Vermont Cider Company crafts a variety of ciders for a variety of consumers. There’s ultra-craft Vermont Cider Co., iconic Woodchuck, fruit-forward Wyder’s as well as the classic Magners Irish Cider and Blackthorn, rounding out our import offerings. Vermont Cider Company reinvigorated American hard cider in 1991, with the launch of Woodchuck, and stays focused on the category today through our commitment to crafting innovative and refreshing hard ciders.

Price:  n/a (retails for $9.99-10.99)
Where Bought:  n/a
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  it showed up

Photo Oct 05, 5 53 18 PM

First Impression:  Pink hue.  Low carbonation.  Smells mildly fruity.

Tasting Notes:  Semi-dry to semi-sweet.  Medium bodied.  Low tartness and acidity.  No bitterness, sourness, tannins, or funk.  Notes of strawberry with a hint of floral.  Quick finish.  Low apple flavor and complexity.  High sessionability.  Moderate flavor intensity.

My Opinion:  I liked it.  Fruity and easy to drink.  However, I’m curious if I really tasted fruitiness from red-fleshed apples (looks like their unfermented juice was used to back-sweeten a drier cider), or my brain saw the pink hue and assumed it would be fruity.

Most Similar to:  Angry Orchard Rosé

Closing Notes:  This is yet another rosé cider release – it looks like every commercial cider brand has now jumped on the trend.

Have you tried Woodchuck Rosé?  What did you think?

Woodchuck Pearsecco

Review of Woodchuck Pearsecco.  It is my first time trying this, but I have had most of their line-up (see here).

>>This is a review of a sample can provided to Cider Says by Woodchuck.  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.<<

Cider:  Bubbly Pearsecco
Cidery:  Woodchuck
Cidery Location:  Middlebury VT
ABV:  6.1%
How Supplied:  six pack of 12oz cans
Style:  American commercial cider from dessert apples with pear

Photo Oct 03, 6 48 43 PM Photo Oct 03, 6 48 55 PM Photo Oct 03, 6 49 03 PM

Availability:  wide release

Cider Description:  Inspired by sparkling wines, this dry pear cider is full of bubbles with a clean, crisp finish.

Cidery Description:  Vermont Cider Company is a leading hard cider maker in the United States, with a state of the art cidery located in Middlebury, Vermont. Vermont Cider Company crafts a variety of ciders for a variety of consumers. There’s ultra-craft Vermont Cider Co., iconic Woodchuck, fruit-forward Wyder’s as well as the classic Magners Irish Cider and Blackthorn, rounding out our import offerings. Vermont Cider Company reinvigorated American hard cider in 1991, with the launch of Woodchuck, and stays focused on the category today through our commitment to crafting innovative and refreshing hard ciders.

Price:  n/a (retails for $9.99-10.99)
Where Bought:  n/a
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  it showed up

Photo Oct 05, 5 08 04 PM.jpg

First Impression:  Light straw yellow hue.  Moderate carbonation.  Smells of yeast brought to the surface by carbonation.

Tasting Notes:  Dry to semi-dry.  Light to medium bodied.  Moderate tartness.  High acidity.  No sourness, bitterness, tannins, or funk.  Notes of green apple, pear, and pineapple.  Moderate length finish.  Low to moderate flavor intensity, complexity, and apple & pear flavor.  High sessionability.

My Opinion:  I liked it.  This is probably the driest cider I’ve had from Woodchuck, but it still wasn’t completely dry (not that I really expected that from a commercial cidery).  Fuller bodied than I expected for the dryness, but all of Woodchuck’s ciders seem to end up that way.  Nice light flavor, easy to drink, and higher carbonation.

Most Similar to:  A drier and more bubbly version of Crispin Pear or Angry Orchard Pear.  Its actually pretty rare to have a drier pear cider – looking at my list the only one I can think of is Neigel Vintners (now Pear UP) Half Past Prudent, which is no longer made.

Closing Notes:  Next up will be a review of their Rosé, released at the same time – both are said to be inspired by wine and have higher carbonation.

Photo Oct 03, 6 47 15 PM.jpg

Have you tried Woodchuck Pearsecco?  What did you think?

Woodchuck Cucumber Mint

Review of Woodchuck Tank Series release #2, Cucumber Mint.  It is my first time trying this, but I have had their Spring, Summer Time, Fall Harvest, Winter Chill, Amber, Granny Smith, 802, Raspberry, Pear, Crisp, GumptionPink, Hopsation, Ciderbration, Local Nectar (VT)Sour Cherry, Chocolate, Farmhouse ’91, Barrel Select, Pumpkin, Belgian White, Mint, Splitter Splinter, Oopsy DaisyLazy Hazy Lemon CrazyHot Cha Cha ChaCampfire PancakesBarrel Aged CherryDay ChaserJune and JuiceSemi-DryGinger Lovin’Summer Time Pear GingerGumption Citrus Freak, and Tank Series Pear Ginger.

>>This is a review of a sample can provided to Cider Says by Woodchuck.  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.<<

Cider:  Cucumber Mint
Cidery:  Woodchuck
Cidery Location:  Middlebury VT
ABV:  5.0%
How Supplied:  six pack of 12oz cans
Style:  American commercial cider from dessert apples, with cucumber and mint

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Availability:  wide release, July-September 2018, until the next Tank Series release (#3/3, due out later this year)

Cider Description:  Cucumber Mint cider is bursting with bright cucumber and mint for a light, refreshing taste experience.

Cidery Description:  Vermont Cider Company is a leading hard cider maker in the United States, with a state of the art cidery located in Middlebury, Vermont. Vermont Cider Company crafts a variety of ciders for a variety of consumers. There’s ultra-craft Vermont Cider Co., iconic Woodchuck, fruit-forward Wyder’s as well as the classic Magners Irish Cider and Blackthorn, rounding out our import offerings. Vermont Cider Company reinvigorated American hard cider in 1991, with the launch of Woodchuck, and stays focused on the category today through our commitment to crafting innovative and refreshing hard ciders.

Price:  n/a (retails for $8.99-9.99)
Where Bought:  n/a
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  it showed up

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First Impression:  Light straw yellow hue.  Low carbonation.  Smells mild, of mint.

Tasting Notes:  On the sweeter side of semi-dry.  Light to medium bodied.  Low tartness and acidity.  No bitterness, sourness, funk, or tannins.  The flavor was primarily citrus (I didn’t detect any specific cucumber flavor), with a long mint finish.  Low apple flavor and complexity.  Low to moderate flavor intensity.  High sessionability.

My Opinion:  I thought it was ok.  I personally wasn’t super into the mint flavor, but it was mild, not at all overpowering, and the cider was quite drinkable overall.

Most Similar to:  Schilling Watermelon Mint, which was similar to this in that the flavor overall was rather mild, and the mint was only on the finish.

Closing Notes:  This is the second mint flavored cider I have known Woodchuck to make – the first was cellar series “Mint”.

Have you tried Woodchuck Cucumber Mint?  What did you think?

Woodchuck Tank Series Pear Ginger

Review of Woodchuck’s Pear Ginger, the first release in their new “Tank Series”, about which they said “Woodchuck has always been synonymous with innovation and our cider makers honor this pioneering spirit with the Tank Series.”  I’ve tried most of their lineup; see here.

>>This is a review of a sample can provided to Cider Says by Woodchuck.  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.<<

Cider:  Pear Ginger
Cidery:  Woodchuck
Cidery Location:  Middlebury VT
ABV:  5.0%
How Supplied:  six pack of 12oz cans (and kegs)
Style:  American commercial cider with ginger and pear flavors

Photo Feb 27, 3 50 17 PM Photo Feb 27, 3 50 29 PM Photo Feb 27, 3 50 42 PM

Availability:  wide release for 3-4 months, then replaced by the next Tank Series

Cider Description:  A crisp ripe pear cider bursting with ginger for a taste that is light and refreshing.

Cidery Description:  Vermont Cider Company is a leading hard cider maker in the United States, with a state of the art cidery located in Middlebury, Vermont. Vermont Cider Company crafts a variety of ciders for a variety of consumers. There’s ultra-craft Vermont Cider Co., iconic Woodchuck, fruit-forward Wyder’s as well as the classic Magners Irish Cider and Blackthorn, rounding out our import offerings. Vermont Cider Company reinvigorated American hard cider in 1991, with the launch of Woodchuck, and stays focused on the category today through our commitment to crafting innovative and refreshing hard ciders.

Price:  n/a (retails for ~ $8.99 / six pack)
Where Bought:  n/a
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  it showed up

Photo Mar 02, 4 29 21 PM.jpg

First Impression:  Medium straw yellow hue.  Nearly still (very low carbonation).  Smells of sweet pear juice with spicy ginger.

Tasting Notes:  Semi-sweet.  Medium bodied.  Low tartness and acidity.  No bitterness, sourness, funk, or tannins.  Notes of syrupy pear, pineapple, spicy ginger, and a hint of citrus.  Moderate finish with lingering ginger.  Low apple flavor.  Mild to moderate ginger flavor (more spicy than burning).  Moderate pear flavor, sessionability, and flavor intensity.  Mild complexity.

My Opinion:  I’m not a ginger fan, so I was a bit ambivalent, but my husband really liked it.  Light and refreshing, with the mild ginger made even milder with the sweet pear.

Most Similar to:  Woodchuck Out On a Limb Ginger Lovin’, except with more ginger and the added pear.

Closing Notes:  This was originally released in summer 2017, as a new version of their Summer Time (which was previously blueberry).  They also plan to have two more Tank Series releases this year.

Have you tried Woodchuck Pear Ginger?  What did you think?

Gumption Cider Co. Citrus Freak

Review of Citrus Freak from Gumption Cider Co. (part of Vermont Cider Co., which also includes Woodchuck).  This is the second year-round offering from the series, along with the original Gumption (which I reviewed here).  Gumption started in 2015 under the Woodchuck brand, but it branched out as its own brand in 2016.

2017-06-08 17.48.57 2017-06-08 17.48.47

>>This is a review of a sample bottle provided to Cider Says by the Vermont Cider Co.  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.<<

Cider:  Citrus Freak
Cidery:  Gumption Cider Co. (part of the Vermont Cider Co.)
Cidery Location:  Middlebury VT
ABV:  5.5%
How Supplied:  six pack of 12oz bottles
Style:  American commercial cider from dessert apples, with citrus and Cascade hops

2017-06-08 17.49.07 2017-06-08 17.49.20

Availability:  Year-round, wide release

Cider Description:  Part prankster, part gangster, Gumption’s right-hand man is the Citrus Freak.  A perfect pairing of eating apples, grapefruit, and Cascade hops, this semi-dry cider delivers an all-day enjoyable citrus experience.

Gumption Description:  The Circus of Ciders.  Originally launched under the Woodchuck brand in 2015, Gumption® is a bold and audacious brand which has been wildly successful with consumers. In December 2016, Gumption spun off from Woodchuck® as its own brand with line extensions including the rotational Late Show series and Citrus Freak.

Vermont Cider Co. Description:  Vermont Cider Co. introduced the U.S. to the craft cider category 25 years ago. Dedicated exclusively to cider making, they are the proud producers of their namesake brand, the original American hard cider, Woodchuck, the northeast premium hard cider brand, Vermont Cider Co., the circus of ciders, Gumption, the west coast native, Wyder’s Cider, and importers of Magners Irish Cider and Blackthorn. With an unparalleled focus on quality and innovation, Vermont Cider Co. leads the category in releasing the most premium liquid and pioneering new ciders made from the finest ingredients. Under the watchful eyes of two award-winning cider makers, Vermont Cider Co. produces and distributes from Middlebury, VT, blending together the passion of their consumers, their creativity, and their heritage within the green mountains.

Price:  n/a (retails for $8.99-$10.99 / six pack)
Where Bought:  n/a
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  it showed up

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First Impression:  Very pale straw yellow.  Nearly still.  Smells mildly of sweet citrus.

Tasting Notes:  Semi-dry to semi-sweet.  Medium bodied.  Low to moderate tartness and acidity.  No bitterness, sourness, funk, or tannins.  Notes of grapefruit, lemon, orange, and a hint of citrus-forward hops.  Moderate length finish.  High sessionability.  Low apple flavor.  Low to moderate flavor intensity and complexity.

My Opinion:  I liked the start of this cider, but after a few sips the citrus got a bit fake, almost air freshener ish, more of grapefruit extract than grapefruit juice.  I was surprised the hops were almost imperceptible, but I imagine some folks will like that.  I liked that they went drier on this one too.

Most Similar to:  Schilling Grapefruit & Chill and Somersby Citrus Fruit (or for a more real-tasting grapefruit cider, Elemental Hydrogen)

Closing Notes:  I’d love to see this go more natural tasting, then I’d be a fan, as I like the idea of it.

Have you tried Gumption Citrus Freak?  What did you think?