The Tasting Panel magazine

November 2014

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Page 36 of 136

36  /  the tasting panel  /  november 2014 A Is for Ales, B Is for Bubbles The first time Marketplace tried Neige Apple Ice Wine, we were smitten: Crisp, bright and refreshing, we wanted to take a big bite out of this on the regular. But our hearts went double-aflutter when we tried Neige Bubble, a sparkling apple wine that's got all the awesome apple-y flavor of the still wine, but is kicked up a few notches by a persistent stream of bubbles. Reminiscent of the kiddie table at Thanksgiving, but even cooler, we think this would be a great Champagne alternative this holiday season. Alause for Ales Whether it's in the form of a wholesome Turkey Day ale pie, or a comforting quaff of ale brandy, there's much to love about ales this time of year. Marketplace has tracked down some of the mo enticing ale-related products out there that wi help you amp up your ale- game a year 'round. by Rachel Burkons Thinking Outside the Cider When you think of hard ciders, we're pretty sure you think of something, well, apple-y. But with a massive lineup of flavored ciders, Tieton Cider Works gives us plenty of reasons to think outside the apple, all while maintaining a serious branch-to-bottle connection with a third-generation Yakima Valley organic family-farmed orchard. While apple and apricot or apple and cherry may seem like no-brainer (albeit delicious) combos, Marketplace was won over by offerings like the Yakima Dry Hopped Cider and Tieton Wind Cider, a cider fortified with bourbon barrel–aged brandies, resulting in a Port-style cider that's a unique take on two classics. Another cider company that's doing things a bit differently is The Standard Cider Company, whose True Thirst Dry Apple Cider turns to non-standard cider apple variet- ies to produce its ciders, instead featuring grocery store staples like Granny Smith, Golden Delicious and Fuji. The result is a softer, fruitier style of cider that's offered in Dry, Sparkling and Ginger expressions. Ale's Aroximation While we're wild for honey and its possibilities in cocktails (see page 116 for our full honey report), Marketplace knows that the vegan trend is making serious inroads into the cocktail game as well. When we stopped in to Crossroads Kitchen, an L.A. vegan eatery, Bar Manager Jeremy Lake was bemoaning not being able to use honey in cocktails. Thankfully, we had a solution for him: Bee Free Honee, made 100 percent from apples. We gave Jeremy some samples to explore, and he was happy to provide a tasting note for us: "Its flavor sits on my palate nicely somewhere between traditional honey, agave and fresh apple juice." The Tr of Vodka With the gluten-free train continuing to roll through the beverage industry, consumers and bartenders alike are on a quest for new grain- free distillates. Helping to spice up the vodka offerings with some off-the-tree goodness is TREE Vodka, made 100% from apples grown, picked and distilled on a fourth-generation family-owned fruit farm in Western New York. The result is a crisp, slightly sweet vodka that resembles biting into a fresh red apple— but boozier, and therefore, way more fun.

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