Though I’m not the biggest fan of most hopped ciders, I respect Anthem Hops for doing its thing. If you’re the kind of person who generally likes hopped ciders, or who thinks an apple-y lager sounds tasty, I feel pretty confident in recommending this one to you.
I hesitate to recommend some hopped ciders to beer drinkers because apple and hops seems like a combination that might not appeal to many (despite “appeal to beer drinkers” usually being the reason for hopping a cider in the first place), but this is one I feel pretty good about.
The Cascade hops give the cider a, well, hoppy aroma, but also with a side of fruit and florals. It’s quite dry, a little tart, a very pale straw color, and the hops are well evident in the bitter, somewhat funky taste — but they don’t fight with the apples, instead blending together into a cohesive whole.
Interesting thing about Anthem: they have a page where you can see specific percentages on what recent individual batches of each of their products contain — for example, I’m probably drinking Batch 52 of the Hops, which is 40% Red Delicious, 28% Granny Smith, 5% Golden Delicious, and 26% assorted others.
Another interesting thing about Anthem: the batch info is especially relevant (though it would be even more relevant if it included ABV) because their product line stays the same, but with varying composition over the course of the year based on what fruit varieties are available. You can see in the case of their main cider that even from one batch to the next, the composition can change significantly.
(So when it comes down to it, yes, this review can only be of limited use to anyone unless you drink some of the same batch I’ve got. But at least you have a general idea of what to expect?)
Anthem’s site says the Hops ranges from 5.0%-6.9% ABV, and my local liquor store had this tap at the growler station listed at 6.9%, but I don’t know if they’re just listing it at the high end of the range to be cautious or if that’s actually the ABV of this batch in particular.