On Cider (Briefly)

I notice that Carling (MolsonCoors) is poised to unveil a new cider in the UK. This, of course, follows that company’s lead in Canada and also Labatt (Anheuser-Busch InBev) with its Keith’s brand of cider.

All of which makes me wonder why some people, presumably perfectly reasonable folk, would draw the conclusion that the ability to make a mass-market lager qualifies a company to also make a cider. I’d understand it if the move went from beer to whisky, since the start of distillation is essentially brewing, but other than having yeast ferment sugars, there is very, very little to connect the brewing of a beer with the creation of a cider.

I have not tried the Molson Canadian Cider, and am in no great rush to do so. I have tried the Keith’s Cider and found it to be rather unfortunate, sad enough to place last in a blind tasting of a dozen of so major and minor label ciders, in fact. I see no reason to expect anything different from the Carling cider.

Brewing ain’t cider making, folks. Leave each to the experts and stop expecting sheep’s milk from a cow’s udder.

5 Replies to “On Cider (Briefly)”

  1. The start of distillation is not “essentially brewing” other than in a very simplistic sense. Once you get into the detail of what is going on the processes are not really very similar. You can’t make whisky in a brewery, but you can make industrial fake cider, because all you need to do is obtain some pulped apple core and skin waste and ferment it with a load of sugar and water.

  2. I haven’t tried the Molson Canadian Cider, probably will at some point because you never know. Trying Alexander Keith’s Original Cider now vs. Blackthorn. Completely different taste, the Keith’s is sweet, not itself an objection but the flavours seem awkward and florid, similar to other North American ciders I’ve had (including craft versions). Maybe it’s the apples, the essential difference from Blackthorn’s off-dry, elegant flavour. I much prefer the English one. I know some people deride the mass market ciders but I’ve had lots of scrumpy in England and the Blackthorn is a very good iteration of a traditional English taste IMO. Gaymer Cider Co. Ltd makes it, I gather an old-established cider maker, and it knows what it’s doing.


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