From the website: “Made from traditional American and English apples, this cider has a soft tannic bite and crisp acidity“
- Appearance: Bright, Golden
- Aroma: Subtle Cider Apple, Caramel, Spice, Honey
- Taste: Crisp, Tannic, Citrus, Oaky, Dry
Background: Michigan is a prolific fruit growing region in America and there’s an interesting Canadian connection. According to a 1873 Annual Report published by the Michigan State Horticulture Society the first variety of apples to Michigan was brought in 1796 from Montreal, Canada. What did we get in return? Well, Michigan gave us the Red Wings, Iggy Pop and Robin Williams. Okay we’re even. Thanks Michigan!
First Taste is: Clean and crisp! The nose of this dry cider from Michigan is of honey and caramel. It pours a 1/4″ mousse that subsides after a minute or two. The mousse starts up again once entering the mouth and wraps itself around your tongue with a almost creamy texture of citrus and caramel with an oak finish. A slightly winey start moves to a playful acidic middle with a balanced muted tannic finish. Finally there is a soft after-taste of fresh apples which was a welcoming contrast to the acids and tannins.
What’s in it? Apples & Sulfites. No surprises here.
Overall: Personally, my favourite ciders are not made from a single variety of apple. Don’t get me wrong, single variety ciders are delicious too. But something special happens when you blend varieties, that makes for a rounded flavour. ‘Melded’ is a great example of the type of cider that I really love. Uncle John’s choice of apples help balance tannins, acids, and sugars and allows for the fresh apple after-taste to shine at the finish. In case you can’t tell, I was really happy with this cider made from English and Heritage apples. It’s no wonder that they have won so many awards at the 2nd largest cider competition in the world, GLINTCAP. This cider is all class; subtle, balanced, and complex. Well done Uncle John’s!
I was fortunate enough to have this sent to me by my friend Eric West at ciderguide.com. Eric is a fellow cider-nerd, certified Ciccerone, BJCP Judge, Registar at GLINTCAP, as well as writing his book (The Cider Guide) that’s soon to be published. Eric knows his cider.
Would I buy it again? Yes.
Where to get it? ‘Melded’ is a seasonal cider. You can find Uncle John’s Cider at Bushwacker in Portland as well as you can find their ciders in the Chicagoland area here: http://www.freshcoastdist.com/sellers/ Just scroll to the bottom to find Uncle John’s. – Thanks Kelly and Andy for the help in finding locations.
Rating: 8 out of 10
X-factor: I’ve been looking forward to tasting Uncle John’s Cider for quite some time. I’d be really interested in trying their other ciders based on how much I liked this one.
Full Disclosure: This was my first cider from Michigan. Based on the quality of this cider, there’s much for me to look forward to as I familiarize myself with Michigan cider.