Seattle Cider – Three Pepper

Seattle Cider Three Pepper

It looks so unassuming, until you take a whiff.

Being the kind of person who doesn’t usually take their Thai/Indian/Mexican food crying-spicy, I was dubious about this cider the first time I picked it up. THREE Pepper cider? I asked myself. It’s only one bottle, you can handle it, I replied. To myself.

After I tried it, someone doing their own exploration of regional cider offerings asked me how it was, and in the months since I recommended it they’ve apparently been drinking almost nothing else.

If you’re already ambivalent about the idea of drinking pepper cider, the aroma isn’t reassuring: it’s an immediate dramatic hit of jalapeno and capsaicin.

To my surprise, though, this cider is more bark than bite — when you actually take a sip you get mostly a medium-sweet cider, with some fresh pepper flavor and fire that hovers around the outside and eases in toward the finish.

The heat from the peppers lingers in the aftertaste, and the quicker you chug it down, the more it’ll make itself known, but over the course of a bottle it never gets to the point where it bothers me.

I’m a bit at a loss trying to think of what kind of meal you might pair it with — something else spicy, probably, but not so spicy you want your drink to save you.

Track down some Three Pepper for yourself here. It says small batch/limited edition, so you may have a hard time finding any, but I’ve seen it in my local store for months, so then again maybe not.