Brew Talk: Woodchuck Smoked Apple Cider

No one asked for this, but Jason and I thought we’d start sharing our adventures in food and booze, along with other life stories. I guess this blog will have an eclectic purpose. So here we go.

The Kleists have recently gotten into the wonderful world of beer and bourbon. It’s pretty awesome because we live in a town that appreciates the art and craft of good wine and beer making, and there are a few distilleries popping up here and there so we know bourbon in our area is on the horizon. While we’re not experts on the subject, we’d love to give our incite on beers and bourbon. Rachel likes wine a lot but she does not feel like she stands a chance in the wine world when it comes to talking about tannins and mouth feel and floral notes. Just know that red wine is great, and white wine is cool too if it’s warm outside and there aren’t any Corona Lights around.

Back to brews though. Costco’s really been on their craft brew game recently. Jason and I are pretty loyal to our local breweries, but if they happen to be closed one day or we don’t want to make the trek to fill up our growlers, we’ll often hit up Costco for a brew fix. We’re both very loyal to the IPA, but we’ll venture off the path every once in awhile ESPECIALLY when it’s 100 degrees outside. So, we picked up a couple ciders, one was a pear cider which we’ve yet to try, and the other was this:


Woodchuck Hard Cider: Smoked Apple

So, let’s have some Brew Talk. First off this cider pours dark. We weren’t expecting that, but maybe should have with the “smoked” in it’s title. It smells like apple at first, but quickly the smokiness makes it’s way up your nostrils and it’s like, “Woah, where’d that come from?” At 6.5% this brew’s alcohol level is actually pretty high for a cider and it definitely packs a punch.

Rachel’s thoughts: The first sip was really pleasant. The apple was prominent and there was that definite sweetness that comes with a cider. However, it wasn’t long before the smokey components made themselves known and, for me, it was all downhill from there. Honestly, it tastes like a mixture of campfire, bacon, and smoke, with a little bit of apple thrown in the mix – which doesn’t sound gross initially, but just imagine all of that in liquid form. Even though I gave it a valiant effort, it didn’t take long for me to know that this beer wasn’t for me. The aftertaste was just smoke and that was too much for my palette to handle (liquid smoke is my nemesis). We didn’t eat anything with this beer, but I can imagine that paired with a burger or something heavy to offset or compliment the smokiness, it may have made this brew a little more drinkable. I endured about half a pint and threw in the towel. I give this cider a 4 out of 10, BUT would possibly give it another go if I were eating a meal that complimented it well.

Jason’s thoughts: Basically this cider is like a BBQ party in your mouth. You get hit at first with a sweet taste, followed by a smooth smokey flavor. I have a feeling that dudes who have a full lush beard and love smoked meats and bacon would enjoy this manly cider. I agree with Rachel above in that it would be good with food. I would pair this with a pulled pork sandwich or a fat BBQed burger. I give this a 7 out of 10. It was good, but I would not always reach for this cider if it was available to me.

So, there you have it. The Woodchuck Smoked Apple Cider is good for dudes, and maybe okay for chicks if the circumstances are right (like most things, amiright?). The average score for this cider is 5.5 out of 10, and since it’s only $3.99 at Costco for 22oz the Kleists say, “Throw some pork into a crockpot, toast up a few pretzel buns, and give this cider a whirl.”

If you happen to try it, or have tried it, let us know your score/thoughts in the comments!