Redbrook Chilli Cider

Until now I have tried only one chilli-infused cider and it wasn’t a cider from a European country but from Canada. It was Sulkers Pineapple-Penos made with pineapple and charred jalapeño so it’s not entirely the same as cider I’m giving a try tonight. Redbrook from the Czech Republic has provided me with a sample of the spicy version of their Original Polosuchý (semi-dry) infused with chilli. I don’t think that any cider maker in Europe has manufactured anything similar to this. Company: Redbrook Cider
Place of Origin: Dřínov, Central Bohemian Region, Czech Republic
Apples: a blend of Czech apples from Jiří Hubáček’s orchards with chilli
Sweetness as per label: semi-dry
ABV: 6%
Package type: 330ml amber glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: pint glass or chalice glass

Appearance: pours a clear amber with an orange hue and a quickly dissipating white head. Low carbonation. Body is low to medium.

Aroma/Nose: not too many notes here. Just a flavour of commercial tetra-pack apple juice from a supermarket and some malty notes.

Taste: my first taste is medium sweet with low acidity. The mid-palate has a slight astringent taste, a flavour of a commercial tetra-pack apple juice and some light burning from powdered chilli that lingers on. Finishes dry leaving a flavour of tetra pack apple juice note.

Overall: the spiciness of chilli is not too high but nicely complements this cider and warms you from inside like a nice spicy meal. But just like other ciders from Redbrook, it tastes like an apple juice, not cider. Although I found it drinkable it tastes only average. Also, every time I would take a sip something (must be the chilli) irritated my throat and made me cough. I don’t remember coughing when I had Sulkers Pineapple-Penos. Taken together, I think it’s an interesting offering mostly due to the addition of chilli but I wouldn’t buy it again as it resembles a commercial tetra pack apple juice with chilli. Sorry, guys. 2/6

Availability: I couldn’t track a shop offering this cider in the Czech Republic so perhaps it was just an experiment?

Price: Chilli Cider was a sample provided by Redbrook Cider.

Advertisements

Redbrook Red Fruit Polosuchý

After sampling the Perry Polosuchý and the Original Polosuchý, both from the Czech cider maker Redbrook I’m giving their Red Fruit a try. Red fruit is a mix of fermented apple juice and red fruit juice. Company: Redbrook Cider
Place of Origin: Dřínov, Central Bohemian Region, Czech Republic
Ingredients: fermented apple juice and red fruit juice 
Sweetness as per label: semi-dry
ABV: 4%
Package type: 330ml amber glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: white wine glass or chalice glass

Appearance: pours a deep ruby red with a violet hue and a quickly dissipating foam. Medium artificial carbonation. Body is low to medium.

Aroma/Nose: smells fruity and slightly acidic of blackcurrant, chokeberry and blackcurrant juice.

Taste: it starts only slightly sweet with a low to medium acidity. Blackcurrant, chokeberry, light to medium astringent taste on the mid-palate. It finishes dry with a nice lingering acidity and a flavour of red fruits.

Overall: briefly, Redbrook’s Red Fruit tastes like a blackcurrant juice mixed with some chokeberry juice. Interestingly, it’s extremely drinkable. A really delicious and good tasting red fruit juice. Actually, I would have bought it again if it was available as a regular juice as it’s not so sweet as usually juices are. But it’s hard to consider this creation a cider or wine. Sorry, guys. 3/6

Availability: only in the Czech Republic through Opily Jabko and Sklizeno. Also, available in many bars and restaurants around the Czech Republic.

Price: Red Fruit Polosuchý was a sample provided by Redbrook Cider.

Redbrook Perry Polosuchý

Pears used to make Redbrook’s Perry Polosuchý come from orchards established in 1994. However, the fruit growing tradition in Dřínov, Czech Republic stretches back to the second half of the twentieth century.  Today I give you Redbrook’s Perry Polosuchý.Company: Redbrook Cider
Place of Origin: Dřínov, Central Bohemian Region, Czech Republic
Pears: a blend of Czech pears from Jiří Hubáček’s orchards
Sweetness as per label: semi-dry
ABV: 5%
Package type: 330ml amber glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: white wine glass or chalice glass

Appearance: pours a clear golden with light faint amber hues and a white foam reducing to a ring. Medium artificial carbonation. Body is medium.

Aroma/Nose: the aroma is sweetish and lightly vinous with notes of pear juice and ripe juicy pears, red apples and a light woody touch of stems.

Taste: my first taste is a bit sweeter than semi-sweet with no acidity. Then it gets creamy, almost like vanilla ice cream with notes of ripe juicy pear, woody notes of stems, light banana, gentle vinous note and very distant astringent taste. Towards the finish, I get a distant bitter and earthy note with a lingering note of stems.

Overall: Redbrook’s Perry tastes more interesting than the previously sampled Original Polosuchy as it has more depth and a richer set of flavours. I think it’s drinkable and I liked its almost ice-cream-like creaminess and complementing woody notes of stems. But still, it lacks qualities of a great perry. In my opinion, it can be likeable, especially by those who like sweet stuff. Also, I think that the Redbrook’s Perry could go well with desserts such as ice-cream or sweet pancakes. 3.5/6

Availability: only in the Czech Republic through Pochutnejsi and Sklizeno. Also, available in many bars and restaurants around the Czech Republic.

Price: Perry Polosuchý was a sample provided by Redbrook Cider.

Redbrook Original Polosuchý

Redbrook Cider comes from the Czech Republic and is produced in Dřínov u Slaného in the Central Bohemian Region. Apples used for Redbrook’s Cider are grown in the orchards owned by Jiří Hubáček. It’s my first time trying anything from this cider maker.Company: Redbrook Cider
Place of Origin: Dřínov, Central Bohemian Region, Czech Republic
Apples: a blend of Czech apples from Jiří Hubáček’s orchards
Sweetness as per label: semi-dry
ABV: 5%
Package type: 330ml amber glass bottle with crown cap
Recommended type of glass: white wine glass or chalice glass

Appearance: pours a clear pale golden with light orange hues with a fast reducing white foam. Medium artificial carbonation. Body is low.

Aroma/Nose: it smells like a regular apple juice from a supermarket. Further notes I pick up are of distant caramel and toffee with a light buttery flavour.

Taste: the first sip is slightly sweet of caramel with low acidity. It tastes a bit watery with notes of red apples, regular apple juice (but not that strong as on the nose), light astringent taste, distant bitterness and red berries. It finishes dry with a note of dried stone fruits, including apricot, distant buttery flavour, and slightly biting due to the feeling of bubbles bursting in the mouth.

Overall: the flavour of Redbrook’s Original more closely resembles that of apple juice than that of cider or an alcoholic beverage made from apples. The Original is drinkable,  made from quality apples, but not exciting. An apple juice with added cider. Also, it has a light buttery note, which I am not a fan of. I guess it will find an audience among those who never had cider before, hence don’t know how cider is supposed to taste like. But a more demanding cider drinker will be disappointed. 3/6

Availability: only in the Czech Republic through Pochutnejsi. Also, available in many bars and restaurants around the Czech Republic.

Price: Original Polosuchý was a sample provided by Redbrook Cider.

Tátův Cider Polosuchý

One day Jan Abt and his family decided to leave Prague to live a simple and peaceful life,  away from the busy city. The family bought a farm with apple orchards, and settled in a small village Líšnice, 30 km south-west of Prague. In 2014 they launched Tátův Sad (Czech for Dad’s Orchard), which is a family business, where each family member is assigned to a different task. Dad takes care of the orchards and cider making, Mum covers the sales part, whereas Uncle is in charge of graphic design. Their current line-up features a dry, semi-dry and hopped version. Since they recently have planted new apple trees of English and French varieties, we can expect more ciders from Dad’s Orchard coming soon.
Company: 
Tátův Sad
Place of Origin: Líšnice, Středočeský Kraj, Czech Republic
Apples: apples from their own and neighbouring orchards
Sweetness as per label: semi-dry
ABV: 4.9%
Package type: draught
Recommended type of glass: pint glass

Appearance: pours a clear golden with a large froth, which only slowly reduces. Lightly carbonated. Body is medium.

Aroma/Nose: the nose is rather weak and has only crisp yellow apples. That’s all I can get here.

Taste: it starts slightly watery and slightly sweet with moderate lemon-like acidity. Followed by a smoky touch, a flavour of apple juice, delicate astringency and a light bitter taste towards the end.

Overall: I could swear there is King of the Pippins in the mix, as this apple variety gives a quite characteristic bitter flavour. Anyway, Polosuchy is based on an English dry style of cider. It’s an easy drinking pretty complex drop, which will appeal to a larger audience. There could be more aroma on the nose, but it tasted quite ok. I wouldn’t mind having it again. 3.5/6 

Availability: in many bars and restaurants in the Czech Republic. From Kralupská pivotéka U Chameleona in Kralupy nad Vltavou. Online available from Dobry Cider, Opily Jabko. Delikatesy online, Beershop.cz, Cauvino or in the Netherlands from CiderLab.

Price: had it at InCider Bar at 55 CZK (2.1 EUR) a pint. InCider Bar will sadly close at the end of the year.

Sigr z Jabka Polosuchy

Sigr z Jabka Polosuchy is one of the ciders that I sampled during Slavnost Cideru 2017, a Cider Festival held in Prague. I must say that Sigr was one of a few ciders I really enjoyed at this event. I wanted to have their cider again on Sunday (the last day of the festival), but they have already left leaving me with plenty of questions about them and their cider. Therefore, all I was able to find about them is that Sigr was founded only in 2016 in Jablonec nad Nisou, The Czech Republic.

Company: Sigr z jabka
Place of Origin: Jablonec nad Nisou, The Czech Republic
Apples: unknown
Sweetness as per label: semi-dry
ABV: 6%
Package type: draught
Recommended type of glass: pint glass

Appearance: pours a clear pale golden with no head. Lightly carbonated.

Aroma/Nose: on the nose gentle vinegary flavour with funky notes of barnyard, leather and beeswax. Also, some red apples and fermented apples.

Taste: it starts slightly sweet with low to medium acetic-acidity and a solvent-like taste. On the mid-palate fermented apples with both green and red apples. Also, notes of barnyard, beeswax and leather perceivable. The finish is dry with gentle astringent and slightly bitter notes.

Overall: Sigr z Jabka polosuchy is a very drinkable and decent cider. It’s complex, only slightly sweet and despite funky and solvent-like flavours very smooth. Hence, it should appeal to almost everyone. As mentioned earlier, one of my favourites at the festival. My friend, who I shared Sigr with, was also delighted. Definitely worth a purchase! On a side note, I hope that I don’t have to wait another year for the next edition of Slavnost Cideru to drink Sigr again. 4.5/6 

Availability: online from Opily jabko. Every now and then available at InCider Bar in Prague. Also in La Kavarna and Q Burger in Jablonec nad Nisou.

Price: had it at Slavnost Cideru 2017, a cider festival in Prague (0.2L at 25 CZK – 1 EUR)