Nine Pin: Crimson Crab
Cider: Crimson Crab
Cidery: Nine Pin
Origin: Albany, NY, USA
Label Description: “Crafted with 100% New York crabapples. Nine Pin’s mission is to support New York agriculture by producing quality craft ciders using 100% local New York apples and fruit. The Crimson Gold crabapple is a cross between two heirloom apple varieties: Yellow Newton and Esopus Spitzenburg. Nine Pin’s Crimson Crab cider highlights the variety’s extraordinary balance of sweet and tart. Our unfiltered single variety is crisp, dry, and true to this unique crabapple.”
Color: Pale yellow, cloudy
Aroma: Crabapple (similar in smell to a tart apple)
Body: Fairly light
Acidity: Relatively high
Tannin: Between low and medium
Flavor Profile: Upfront is a tart-sweet apple flavor with secondary notes of honey. As the sip progresses, the apple flavor becomes tarter, reaching its peak tartness at the end. A lemon flavor comes through at the end and continues into the aftertaste along with the tart apple.
Overall Thoughts and Rating
Overall, I really enjoyed Crimson Crab. It was pleasantly tart, with just enough sweetness to prevent the cider from becoming unbearably tart. I imagine this would be a lovely cider to pair with a sharp cheese, as the acidity from the cider would cut through the sharpness. Sadly, this was a limited, taproom-exclusive, but if it is released again next year and you happen to live in the Albany area, it is worth picking up.
Overall, I really liked the tart-sweet quality of Crimson Crab. I thought that the initial sweetness was nicely balanced out by the tart crabapple finish. It is a shame this is a limited release, because it just might be my favorite Nine Pin cider so far. The tartness would prevent me from having two in a row, but one would be just fine.