Cider Review: Woodchuck Belgian White
Cider isn’t beer – that can’t be stressed enough. I am dedicated to helping consumers understand the differences, and can’t stand when apple ales who must not be named are marketed as if they were cider. Beer-inspired cider is a whole other category though. For some, it’s a stepping stone. Something familiar enough to bring them out of their comfort zone and give cider a chance. For others, it helps break the stereotype that all cider is sweet
I was never much of a beer drinker, even before I discovered my issues with the big, bad gluten monster. Because of that, I feel like I have little room to talk about beer. I don’t want to show my ignorance and also don’t want to come off as cider-elitist, be that as it may. But beer-inspired cider is something I’m definitely open to. Woodchuck Belgian White falls cleanly into this category.
Belgian White is the latest from Woodchuck's Tank Series, an ever-changing line of new and innovative sessionable ciders. Each Tank Series cider will be available for three to four months before being replaced by the next variety. This is not the first time Belgian White has been released – it previously existed as part of the Private Reserve line, and is back thanks to the requests of its fans. It's made using traditional Belgian beer yeast, cloudy, and uses traditional witbier-inspired adjuncts like orange and coriander. A beer-inspired cider indeed.
(Full disclosure: Woodchuck sent us a sample of Belgian White to try.)
Light amber and hazy, moderate carbonation on pouring that quickly dissipates.
Citrusy and floral, but predominantly fresh cut orange.
Silky orange up front, with notes of coriander and…melon? Honeydew and cantaloupe – not overly, but there. Honeyed apples bring the necessary acidity to balance the sweetness.
Semi-sweet but well balanced by pithiness and zesty coriander spice. Yeasty smoothness creates an almost creamy mouthfeel while building body that would otherwise be missing.
Orange and apple flavors linger.
Overall (and honest opinion, unbiased by Woodchuck’s generosity in sending us a sample):
This is a refreshing and easy-drinking cider. I had to remind myself to slow down and taste it. I could see a pack disappearing quickly on a warm summer night. I am disappointed to see caramel color in the ingredients list, I think it would be fine without added color even if that means the finished cider would be a bit lighter. It’s cider, not a witbier, so the color doesn’t have to match exactly. With that said, this is a great option for anyone looking to change up their summer cider or to share with their beer-drinking friends.
Belgian White is available nationally on draft and in 12 oz 6-packs. Don’t sleep on it, because this Tank Series cider is only here for a limited time.