OBC Cidre Classic

When you are in Berlin, sooner or later you will have to try the range of OBC Cidre featuring Classic, Strong, Rosé and Bio manufactured by Original Berliner Cidre as they are available in almost every shop, bar or restaurant in Berlin. Most probably due to the fact that it is the first cider manufactured in Berlin. After their Strong, Rosé and Bio the time has come to sample the last one, Classic.Company: OBC-Cidre GmbH
Place of Origin: BerlinGermany
Ingredients: fermented apple juice carbon dioxide, sulphites
ABV: 3%
Package type: 330ml clear glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: wine glass or chalice glass

Appearance: pours a clear pale golden with a white quickly dissipating fizz. Low artificial carbonation. Low body.

Aroma/Nose: the nose is weak with notes of ripe pear, apple juice from yellow and red apples and a hint typical for cider made from concentrate.

Taste: it begins slightly sweet with moderate acidity of green apples such as Granny Smith. On the mid-palate a smoky note, green and yellow apples. The finish is dry and short leaving a note of citric acid.

Overall: I almost can’t believe that this cider contains only fermented apple juice, carbon dioxide and sulphites. For cider with ABV of barely 3%, it is not really sweet. Also, I can get a hint typical for cider made from concentrate. And, it finishes quickly leaving a note of citric acid. All this made me quite suspicious. Leaving these features behind, OBC is drinkable but drinking it is not pleasurable. It’s almost like drinking a non-alcoholic bubbly for kids. It’s ok but I wouldn’t buy it again. People of Berlin deserve much better cider than this! 2.5/6 

Availability: you can find OBC products in every Späti in Berlin (‘Späti’ is a term used in Berlin for a small corner shop/kiosk open 24/7 selling beer, milk, candies, etc). In addition, you can find OBC in Ambrosetti or KaDeWe. Online from Getränke Hoffman, Durst Express and Weinquelle Hornig.

Price: OBC Cidre Bio was a sample provided by Ciderei.

Schwäbi Cider Maracuja

Cider with Maracuja (German for passion fruit). Do you also have a feeling that these two don’t belong together? Or perhaps I’m wrong? Let’s open the bottle to check it.Company: Juninger Fruchtsäfte
Place of Origin: Niederstotzingen, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Ingredients: apple cider, passion fruit juice from concentrate, sugar, vitamin C, pectin,   carbon dioxide and sulphites
ABV: 2.5%
Package type: 330ml clear glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: cocktail glass or snifter

Appearance: pours a cloudy pale orange with a tiny quickly dissipating white fizz. Lightly sparkling. Sediment in the bottle.

Aroma/Nose: the nose is fruity and lightly sour with notes of passion fruit with a hint of alcohol. This is all I’m getting.

Taste: my first taste is sweet with a low to medium acidity of lemon. Notes of passion fruit, oranges, a bit watery with a detectable flavour of alcohol on the mid-palate. Finishes dry with a flavour of passion fruit, apricot and alcohol.

Overall: let’s be frank, this beverage has nothing to do with cider. Taste wise it’s a different version of Passoã, a passion fruit liqueur, as apart from passion fruit you can taste the alcohol. I used to drink cocktails based on Passoã as a student so I’m pretty familiar with the taste. Schwäbi’s Cider Maracuja is not unpleasant or oversweet, in that sense it’s quite nicely balanced. Also, it has no off-putting notes. But it’s just a passion fruit cocktail. Nothing more. But why would you use the word cider here? Could this be? Perhaps, cider is a new trendy tipple in Germany? 3/6 

Availability: online in Germany from Ciderei.

Price: Schwäbi Cider Maracuja was a sample provided by Ciderei.

Lazy Fox Cider Ingwer-Basilikum

With Lazy Fox, three friends from Hamburg, Robin, Sascha and Henning wanted to introduce a beverage that could be positioned somewhere between cocktails and soft drinks. So they created a range of ciders, the Original (which I have already tried here), the Ingwer-Basilikum (ginger-basil) and the Cranberry-Minze (cranberry-peppermint). Today I’m sampling the ginger-basil flavoured version. Company: Lazy Fox GmbH
Place of Origin: Hamburg, Germany
Ingredients: apple wine, water, sugar, carbon dioxide, natural ginger and basil flavours with other natural flavours, citric acid, sulphites
ABV: 4.9%
Package type: 330ml clear glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: pint glass or

Appearance: pours a clear pale golden with a short-lived white fizz. Medium artificial carbonation. Low body.

Aroma/Nose: the nose is weak with notes of pineapple, ginger, butter, alcohol, green notes with peppermint but not basil or apple.

Taste: it starts very sweet of sugar with a low acidity of lemon. Followed by a bit spicy flavour of ginger with notes of butter, light fresh apple, peppermint and light alcohol. Finishes quickly leaving a fruity, spicy and a bit chemical aftertaste.

Overall: this is officially the worst German cider I have ever tried so far. I have a feeling that someone wanted to poison me with this as it tastes like a fruity washing up liquid. It has unpleasant notes of something buttery with some sort of chemical notes. Thankfully, the taste doesn’t linger on. Did anyone try it before it hit the shelves? I couldn’t drink it and it went down the sink. Horrible stuff. 1.5/6 

Availability: online in Germany from their online shopCiderei and Getränke Paradies Wolf. In Switzerland through PiffPaff.

Price: Lazy Fox Cider Ingwer-Basilikum was a sample provided by Ciderei,

Brauhaus Gusswerk Papagena

Since Brauhaus Gusswerk is based in Salzburg, the city of Mozart, it’s not a surprise that the brewers named their cider after one of the characters of Mozart’s opera. Papagena is the love of Papageno, a bird catcher known from the most famous Mozart’s opera, the Magic Flute. The Papagena is an organic, vegan and sulphite-free cider made from apples grown in Mühlviertel. Previously, I sampled their Big Arlet.Company: Brauhaus Gusswerk
Place of Origin: Salzburg, Austria
Apples: organic apples grown in Mühlviertel
Sweetness as per label: unknown
ABV: 4.5%
Package type: 330ml clear bottle with crown cork
Recommended type of glass: wine glass or chalice glass
Note: 
organic, sulphite free, vegan

Appearance: pours a very cloudy pale golden and a white foam that only slowly dissipates. Lightly carbonated. Body is medium. Sediment in the bottle.

Aroma/Nose: smells of lightly sweet of fresh apple juice and fresh yellow apples, tart apples and a hint of yeast. Moderately strong scent.

Taste: it starts lightly sweet with a medium acidity of lemon. Taste of must and yeast with a light astringency. Finishes quickly with a refreshing taste of lemon flesh with a touch of bitterness.

Overall: I remember having this cider a few years back before becoming Cider Explorer. Back then, I thought that the Papagena was boring and tasted like an unmatured cider. Today, after evaluating nearly 300 ciders, I would consider the Papagena a pleasant and  complex enough drop. Not bad for a cider made by a brewer. Although, for my palate, it could be a bit less sweet and the taste more lingering and overall more exciting, but apart from that, it has a nice level of acidity and a good level of tannins. It’s a cider that can be appreciated by everyone. I would buy it again especially that it is widely available in Berlin. 4/6

Availability: broad in Germany e.g. from Ciderei and in Austria.

Price: The Papagena from Brauhaus Gusswerk was a sample provided by Ciderei

Adam & Eva Cider Eva

Eva crafted by Adam & Eva, a cider maker from Bavaria, has a relatively low alcohol content of only 2.7%. Low ABV can indicate three things. Either cider is sweet as hell and tastes like a boozy apple or watery due to the second pressing of the apple pomace or because it was watered down. Based on my previous experience with German ciders, I think the first scenario is the most realistic one. If my suspicion is correct, well. Poor me. Company: Adam & Eva GbR
Place of Origin: Munich, Bavaria, Germany
Apples: apples from orchards around Lake Constance
ABV: 2.7%
Package type: 330ml clear bottle with crown cork
Recommended type of glass: wine glass or chalice glass

Appearance: pours a clear pale golden with a white slowly dissipating fizz. Low to medium carbonation. Body is medium.

Aroma/Nose: the nose is sweet and fruity with notes of freshly pressed apple juice and apple juice from tetra-pack and pears.

Taste: it starts very sweet with low acidity, followed by a flavour of fresh apple juice made from red and yellow apples and pears and stems. Finishes quickly with a note of commercial apple juice.

Overall: My suspicion was correct. The Eva is a boozy apple juice. Admittedly, its taste is better than of the previously reviewed Adam from the Adam & Eva Cider range as it has no disturbing off-notes (except for the note of apple juice from tetra-pack). But this is most probably because it tastes like a sweet apple juice than apple wine or cider. Summarizing, I thought it was drinkable but nothing more. It will pair with anything that goes with a sweet apple juice. 3/6

Availability: widely available in Germany e.g. through Ciderei or Getränkedienst.

Price: Eva from Adam & Eva was a sample provided by Ciderei.

OBC Cidre Bio

OBC – Original Berliner Cidre has crafted a cider from organic apples grown in orchards of Brandenburg. This product is entirely vegan-friendly. Can you imagine that OBC Cidre Bio was made using a vegan yeast? (is there a non-vegan yeast at all?). Also, the label is vegan and compostable along with the vegan label adhesive. This is my third cider from OBC after the Strong and Rosé.Company: OBC-Cidre GmbH
Place of Origin: BerlinGermany
Ingredients: fermented apple juice from German organic orchards, carbon dioxide, sulphites
ABV: 4%
Package type: 330ml clear glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: wine glass or chalice glass

Appearance: pours a cloudy pale yellow with a white fizz that quickly dissipates. Low artificial carbonation. Low to medium body. Some sediment in the bottle.

Aroma/Nose: the nose is weak with notes of sulphur, white wine, lemon, yellow apples and a hint of caramel.

Taste: my first taste is moderately sweet of sugar with a hint of burnt sugar with the low acidity of lemon and yellow apples. Finishes dry with a touch of bitterness, peppermint and a hint of canned pineapple.

Overall: OBC’s Bio is a very average offering. There might be many notes on the palate and on the nose but they don’t seem to have a positive impact on the overall impression. Like an orchestra without a conductor. The Bio tastes natural and seems to be made from quality apples but I simply didn’t enjoy having it. And, this sulphur note after opening the bottle…Anyway, I would consider it as an alternative to industrial ciders in Berlin, but just don’t expect too much. 3/6 

Availability: you can find OBC products in every Späti in Berlin (‘Späti’ is a term used in Berlin for a small corner shop/kiosk open 24/7 selling beer, milk, candies, etc). In addition, you can find OBC in Ambrosetti or KaDeWe. Online from Ciderei and Weinquelle Hornig.

Price: OBC Cidre Bio was a sample provided by Ciderei.

Schwäbi Cider Holunderblüte

Making a syrup from Holunderblüten (German for elderflower) is still very common in Germany. I remember selling lots of citric acid in July that is required to make the elderflower syrup when I used to work in a pharmacy in Berlin. Since the flavour of elderflower is so popular in Germany, it should not be a surprise to anyone that Schwäbi released a cider flavoured with elderflower. Previously I’ve tried their Cider ApfelCompany: Juninger Fruchtsäfte
Place of Origin: Niederstotzingen, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Ingredients: apple cider, apple juice, water, sugar, natural elderflower flavour, carbon dioxide, sulphites
ABV: 2.5%
Package type: 330ml clear glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: pint glass or flute

Appearance: pours a clear golden with a tiny white fizz that is gone after a few seconds. Lightly sparkling. Medium body.

Aroma/Nose: the nose is strong with notes of pears, dried fruits incl. apricot, baked apples, and a hint of commercial apple juice. No traces of elderflower in the scent.

Taste: my first taste is extremely, syrupy sweet with a very low acidity to balance the sweetness. Notes of red and yellow apples, dried fruits, incl. apricot, pears, baked apples, some herbal notes of thyme and low astringency on the mid-palate. Finishes after 10 seconds with notes of pears.

Overall: after I recovered after the initial sugar high, I can tell the Schwäbi Holunderblüte is not for everyone. Those who prefer their cider syrupy sweet will be satisfied as it is a quality cider with pleasant flavours of apples, pears and dried fruits both in the scent and on the palate. But not elderflower. I was really looking for this flavour but without any luck. Still, I think it is a good alternative to commercial or industrial cider. Could go well as a dessert wine after meals served with sour fruits. 4/6

Availability: online in Germany from Ciderei.

Price: Schwäbi Cider Holunderblüte was a sample provided by Ciderei.

Goldkelchen Cassis

Goldkehlchen expanded their cider range and introduced their Cassis as a limited edition in 2017. Their Cassis was so popular that Adam and Eva, the founders of Goldkelchen decided to keep it. I guess it only confirms that berry cider is a fast-growing sector also in Austria. Company: Goldkehlchen KG
Place of Origin: Vienna, Austria
Ingredients: apple wine 59%, apple juice (29%), blackcurrant juice (12%), carbon dioxide, sulphites.
ABV: 4.5%
Package type: 330ml clear bottle with crown cork
Recommended type of glass: wine glass or chalice glass

Appearance: pours a deep brown with a ruby hue and a short-lived white head. Low to medium carbonation. Artificial carbonation. Body is medium.

Aroma/Nose: all I can get is a note of blackcurrant juice.

Taste: my first taste is slightly sweet with a low to medium acidity. Notes of yellow and less prominent green apples, blackcurrant, light to medium astringency. Finishes with a note of blackcurrant.

Overall: blackcurrant is a tricky fruit as even when using only 10% or 12 % in the case of this cider, blackcurrant notes would dominate. The aroma of the Cassis practically consists only of a note of blackcurrant. Admittedly, a flavour of apples comes through in the palate so the blackcurrant is just there adding complexity to this cider. The Cassis is drinkable and refreshing, I did enjoy having it. It tastes ok but resembles more a boozy juice than fruit wine, not to mention cider. A good alternative for industrial berry cider though. 3/6

Availability: broad in Austria from Spar and Merkur. Online from Die Presse. But also in Germany from Ciderei, Foodist, BelviniC&DAustrian Shop, Spirituosen Tempel,  In Sweden from Brill & Co. In Italy from Sidro & Cider.

Price: Cassis from Goldkehlchen was a sample provided by Ciderei.

Lazy Fox Cider Original

The name of the cider I’m planning to review today ‘Lazy Fox’ may give one an impression that it comes from the UK or at least from an English speaking country. But in fact, Lazy Fox is a German cider brand that was developed in a tiny kitchen in Hamburg by Robin, Henning and Sascha. Where did the inspiration come from? Yes, after their holidays in England. I’m giving their Original a try.Company: Lazy Fox GmbH
Place of Origin: Hamburg, Germany
Ingredients: apple wine, water, sugar, carbon dioxide, citric acid sulphites
ABV: 4.9%
Package type: 330ml clear glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: pint glass or

Appearance: pours a clear pale golden with a white fizz that quickly dissipates. Medium artificial carbonation. Low body.

Aroma/Nose: the nose is moderately strong with notes of sweet pear juice, alcohol, light pineapple and something chemical, which is not necessarily pleasant.

Taste: it begins very sweet with low acidity of lemon. On the mid-palate a note of pear juice, pineapple, lemon and light alcohol. Finishes quickly leaving a fruity and chemical aftertaste.

Overall: long story short, the Original tastes basically like an alcoholic pear juice with some kind of chemical notes, especially on the nose. Moreover, I have a strong suspicion that it might have been made from concentrate although it’s not listed on the label. Also, it’s weird if you can taste the alcohol at ABV of only 4.9%. Unfortunately, I didn’t like it. I couldn’t even finish this small bottle. But I guess some may find it drinkable. I’m sorry but I can’t recommend it to anyone.  2/6 

Availability: online in Germany from their online shopCiderei, Getränke Paradies Wolf, My Time. In Switzerland through PiffPaff.

Price: Lady Fox Cider Original was a sample provided by Ciderei.

Kiezbaum Cider Apfel

After one night out in Mainz, Rhineland Palatinate, Sebastian and Wanja have realised that there was no real cider in Germany. So in 2014, they set up Kiezbaum, their own cider brand. Their goal was to create an alcoholic beverage based on organic apples grown in Hesse that would be less tart than Apfelwein consumed in Frankfurt. To date, their line up consists of Apfel (apple) and Birne (pear). In 2016, their Kiezbaum Cider Apfel won Silver in the category New World Cider at the International Cider Challange. And, this is the cider I’m about to review right now.Company: Kiezbaum, S. Grüner, I. Kunisch GbR
Place of Origin: Mainz, Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany
Apples: locally grown apples from traditional orchards
ABV: 4.9%
Package type: 330ml clear glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: pint glass or wine glass

Appearance: pours a clear gold with a white foam that quickly dissipates. Medium artificial carbonation. Low body.

Aroma/Nose: the nose is quite intense and sweetish with notes of apple must, yellow apples, canned pineapple, quince. Further in the background hints of wood sulphur.

Taste: it begins with low residual sweetness with a medium acidity of lemon. Further notes that come through are of canned pineapple, yellow apples, lemon candy, very low astringency and a distant note of sulphur. The aftertaste is dry with a lingering taste of lemon candy.

Overall: it might not be love at first taste as the sour taste is very pronounced in the first sip. But in the next sip, you get used to the level of sourness in it and all you can do is enjoy it. Kiezbaum’s Cider Apfel is very aromatic, with clear taste and aroma. Flavours move smoothly making you crave for more. What I admired the most was the lingering lemon candy note and the perfect level of sweetness, not entirely on the drier side. I would love to have Kiezbaum’s Cider Apfel again, especially that I think it will pair well with most dishes. If only the carbonation was natural, I would have loved it even more. A very nice drop. 4.5/6 

Availability: online in Germany from Ciderei, Bier De Luxe, Bierlager and die Bierkanzlei. In Switzerland from Gastro Drinks.

Price: Kiezbaum Apple Cider was a sample provided by Ciderei.