From the website: “With the planting of cider specific apples from Europe on our family’s estate in the early 1920’s our great grandfather, George Washington Ward began a rich family tradition in the art and appreciation of cider. Made from a blend of Bramley, Jersey Chisel, Bulmers Norman, Porters Perfection, Lord Lambourne, Belle de Boskoop and a touch of Cox’s Orange Pippin, Wards Hard is a unique proprietary cider full of flavour and pleasing aromatics. ”
- Appearance: Almost Clear. Looks like Welch’s White Grape Juice.
- Aroma: Rubber, Ginger
- Taste: Macintosh Apple, Ginger, Lime
Background: The Ward-Turton family have been growing apples on their property since the 1920’s. Originally hailing from England, 5 generations later they are still doing it. Based in Kelowna BC, Wards Hard Cider is in the heart of the Okanagan. The area has ideal fruit-growing conditions and is an area of BC known for growing great wine, weather and boating.
First Taste is: This sweet cider’s first taste is of Macintosh apples with a slight ginger and lime middle and finally a flowery finish. It is quite carbonated. The first can I opened was a gusher which gave my wife a good chuckle as it spilled all over me. She’s quite used to me spilling or breaking things as 300 lb tattooed Gorillas are not very gentle or well coordinated. There were no surprises with the rest of the cans (yes, a few were consumed).
What’s in it? Hard Cider, carbonated water, natural flavours, natural colouring, sulphites and sorbate to protect flavour. Hmmm…that’s more than your typical, ‘Apples & Sulphite’ right?
Overall: It’s a bit of an interesting one to sum up; It’s nice and refreshing. It would be ideal on a hot summer day – quite the thirst quencher! This isn’t a Real Cider so to speak. Which is odd because it’s made from proper cider apples. The stuff you would expect to make a traditional English cider with. However, what I found instead was a cider with a bit of an identity crisis. Not a traditional cider, and not quite a cider alcopop. It’s something in-between. It’s enjoyable, it’s just not a Real Cider.
Would I buy it again? Probably, I do enjoy the convenience that a metal can has over bottle and wine opener. I’d put this a second option after Lonetree Cider
Where to get it? This was found at Kitsilano Wine Cellar.
Rating: 6 Drinking Gorillas out of 10
X-factor: The people are extremely nice at Wards Hard Cider. They were very helpful in tracking down their product locally and were nice enough to offer me to come and visit the original packing plant when I’m in Kelowna next.
Full Disclosure: I’m always leery of clear cider. Generally the clearer the cider is, the less taste it has. This one is refreshing and nice.