Nine Pin: 2017 Cider Monster
Cider: 2017 Cider Monster
Cidery: Nine Pin
Origin: Albany, NY, USA
Label Description: “2014. Artist Colin Byrne spots a 20 foot wall in Nine Pin’s Albany, New York loading dock and masterfully paints the legendary Cider Monster. Inspired by the beast, each year the Nine Pin production crew, with help from the community, presses as many varieties of apples as possible at our annual Pressing Party. This year’s cider monster contains over 100 varieties of New York apples. Bone dry, complex, and tart, it is aged for one year in the monster’s lair.”
Color: Medium gold, clear
Aroma: Sweet apple
Body: Between light and medium
Acidity: Between medium and high, leaning toward medium
Julia: Upon sipping the cider, there is a sweet apple flavor akin to a Golden Delicious, as well as secondary notes of pear. The acidity starts to come through almost immediately thereafter. Initially, the acidity is relatively low, but it grows throughout the course of the sip, reaching its peak at the end of the sip. As the acidity increases, the sweet apple flavor becomes secondary to notes of lemon, which combine with the acidity to give the cider a crisp finish. Both the lemon flavor and acidity continue into the aftertaste.
Ramsay: Cider Monster is an interesting one given the crazy number of apple varieties that are present in it. The first thing that I get when I sip it is a sweet flavor that reminds me of a Fuji apple. Then, that gives way to a tarter and more acidic apple flavor reminiscent of a Northern Spy. The cider has a slightly lip tingling, off-dry finish. It’s interesting, because you expect a sweet finish based on the first sip. The tarter and more acidic apple varieties, however, surprise you.
Overall Thoughts and Rating
When I first heard about Cider Monster and the fact that it was made from over 100 apple varieties, I was quite curious to try it. I had to wait several months before I was able to secure a bottle, but this cider was well worth the wait. The combination of all of those different apples has produced a pleasantly tart and fairly dry cider with a delicious flavor profile of apple, pear, and lemon. It is also a versatile cider in that it can either be paired with food or enjoyed on its own. I am already looking forward to trying next year’s batch of Cider Monster!
(P.S. How cool is the label art?!)
Overall, I liked the uniqueness of Cider Monster. Most ciders consist of a few different apple varieties, which is far shy of the 100 found in Cider Monster. I feel like if you were to have a group of people try this cider and then ask them to describe its flavor profile, you would get a different description depending on who you asked. That said, I liked the sweet to dry journey of this cider. It’s worth a pick up if you see it in the New York area.
We picked up our bottle of Cider Monster at Nine Pin’s Pressing Party, which you can read about here.