Cider and cold brew coffee might not seem like an obvious combination, but the divine mixture will provide just the pick-me-up we need during South by Southwest. Austin Eastciders’ limited Cold Brew Cider goes on tap at the Collaboratory tasting room starting March 14.
The new cider is a blend of Eastciders’ Original Cider and local coffee icon Cuvée Coffee’s cold brew coffee — packing a 60 mg. punch of caffeine per pint to get us through all the festival fun remaining.
"The timing was purely coincidental. It just happened to be that the cider was ready during SXSW," Chris Lowrey, Eastciders’ brand manager, said. "But people are going to be staying out late, and the festival will be a marathon, so something with caffeine like (the Cold Brew Cider) is pretty perfect."
You’ll notice the enticing aroma of the cold brew up front, followed in the flavor by the sweet apple backbone that combines with the coffee to contribute surprising notes of vanilla and graham crackers. The Cold Brew Cider is one of the small-batch releases Eastciders has been able to do since gaining a tasting room in November.
It was the first time the cidery has collaborated with Cuvée for a cider but may not be the last, according to Eastciders’ fermentation manager Blair Baugher. In the future, Austin Eastciders might add Cuvée coffee beans or the spent coffee cherries that might not otherwise get used.
But that’s not the only future cider to expect. Coming to the Collaboratory not long after the Cold Brew Cider in this net week are a couple barrel-aged options: a rum barrel-aged cider made with barrels from Treaty Oak Brewing & Distilling and tequila barrel-aged cider made with barrels from Dulce Vida Tequila, both local brands.
Sometime this spring, Eastciders will also have a Single Varietal Cider unlike anything the cidery has made before. It features heirloom Gold Rush apples from a sole orchard in Virginia and was "fermented all the way through with wild yeast growing on the skins of the apples," Baugher said. "It’s our first wild-fermented cider."
In the meantime, let the Cold Brew Cider keep you caffeinated during the remainder of the festival, through March 18. Eastciders made only a couple of barrels, and it’s likely to go fast. Try it out at the Collaboratory adjacent to Friends & Allies Brewing at 979 Springdale Rd.
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