Beer…er…Cider Review: Crispin Lansdowne Artisanal Reserve

I had a request from a reader to review something gluten-free. Beerbecue aims to please. So, since I would rather share a needle with Keith Richards than drink a sorghum beer, hard apple cider it is.

Crispin’s Lansdowne Artisanal Reserve hard apple cider has a touch of organic molasses and is fermented with Irish stout yeast.  Crispin’s CEO is a huge rugby fan, and apparently, this cider is an homage to Irish rugby and the now-torn-down Lansdowne Road stadium.  And nothing says “heaving pile of large, sweaty men in Larry Bird-length shorts” like a nice apple wine.

They are just looking for something crisp, tart, and refreshing, with a tantalizingly flighty sweetness.

Actually, I asked a friend who plays rugby in the UK whether rugby players drink cider. He replied, “We drink everything.” Fair enough.

I also agree with whatever this guy says.

I don’t know how to pour this stuff, but mine was a mostly clear and auburn, with big bubbles.  The Haybag got the sludge and hers looked a little like the Potomac river after two days of rain.  It smells like apples, caramel, and something like apple butter.  And it tastes about the same, with some tartness thrown-in, and a dry finish.  It is way more full-bodied, and much less tart, than I expected. But it wasn’t too sweet, it had a little pleasant tartness, and there was very little aftertaste.

I actually liked it.  I may try something more tart next time, or maybe Crispin’s The Saint (with maple syrup and Belgian Trappist yeast).  Until then….beer.

The Haybag: I like it. I taste butterscotch, too. More importantly, I can’t believe you are scared of a French guy named Sebastien.  This blog has an image to maintain!

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6 thoughts on “Beer…er…Cider Review: Crispin Lansdowne Artisanal Reserve

  1. Thanks for reviewing Crispin! I partially agree with you on the sorghum thing. I’ve tried Red Bridge, which is made from it, and found it to be quite a good beer. But New Grist Mill, also made with it, is terrible. It apparently has won a bunch of awards, but I don’t know how, as it’s the skunkiest beer I’ve ever drank. I couldn’t even finish it!

    What I like about Crispin is exactly what you touched on – the fact that is not super sweet, like the Woodchuck ciders. You should try all of the varieties, but make sure to swirl the bottle first so the sludge gets evenly distributed 🙂

    • My pleasure. I didn’t know it had all that business on the bottom, although I guess it makes sense. Had I known I would have probably poured it like a hefe (pour most of it as usual, then swirl around and pour the remainder). I am glad I have some seasoned cider drinkers to point me in the right direction.

    • I fly-fish on it occasionally, out towards 495 and on either side of Great Falls. I generally catch-and-release. I definitely catch-and-release (emphasis on release) fish plucked from the Potomac. 🙂

  2. Pingback: A (Short) Year in Beerbecue: 2011 | beerbecue

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