6/1/19: Fairweather Cider Co.'s Tejano Dreams

10:46 AM

For my wedding, my groomsmen and I all brewed special ciders. Mine contained Anaheim peppers and peanut butter. It looked awful as it fermented (it cleared before bottling), and it smelled not so great. But man, you could taste the peanut butter and feel the smack of heat from the pepper. I loved it.

In February, I went to visit one of my groomsmen in Austin, TX. On my first night there, he took me to a slew of local breweries. One of our stops was at Fairweather Cider Co., and the flight I got contained a taster of one Tejano Dreams (complete with phenomenal chile flavor)--I was astounded by it on tap and knew immediately that we'd have to swing by the joint again before I left so I could grab some cans of the stuff to bring back with me for a proper blogpost.

That time--after, what, three and a half months?--has finally come. So, here we go.

Fairweather (that link should take you to their website) is a cider company based out of--you guessed it--Austin. They make dry cider from apples imported from the Pacific Northwest that pair well with the warm and sunny weather of ATX.

Tejano Dreams (found on this page) includes a reference to my favorite animated show with its tagline. It incorporates Anaheim peppers in brew and maintains the flavor of the fruit without the heat associated with it. Further information from my can divulges that this unfiltered and unpasteurized cider clocks in at 6.5% ABV.

The cider's bouquet is a simple mix of apple sweetness and pepper sharpness. It's pretty damn intriguing: the apple imparts a cool quality while the pepper does the opposite. The two aromas pair perfectly well, an effort that resulted in six whiffs from my cat, Purrl (who was kind enough to wake up for the following photo).

On the flavor front, the cider is exactly as described: all pepper flavor, no pepper heat. Sweet on the fore, the cider gives way to an earthy, green, and almost-vegetably quality, before a nice, dry finish. I have no idea how Fairweather managed this, but I'm very glad that they did. While some heat in a beverage is (as for as I'm concerned) a good thing, the lack of it here makes for one hell of a refreshing cider.

I don't have much to say about the mouthfeel: It's a cider. It has a nice, low level of carbonation (honestly, this would be just as fine as a still cider).

I wasn't a fan of hot (as in spicy hot, not temperature hot) foods until a few years ago, when our friend moved into our apartment with us. This was in the middle of summer and our place was hot in a temperature sense; we only had a few window a/c units and the brick of our building trapped the heat of the day. It sure didn't help that we lived on the upper-most floors of our poorly-ventilated 1920s building. 

The first thing our friend did was make super spicy salsa (or maybe he even brought it with him when he moved in? I can't quite remember). I vividly remember the relief I felt eating that salsa--having my inside be hotter than the outside was a new-to-me cool way of beating the heat. Granted, Tejano Dreams doesn't have any heat, but drinking it still takes me back to those unbearably hot nights a few years back.

I'm jealous of people in Austin. On top of all the great breweries they have, there's a cidery that offers ciders of this caliber. The few cideries we have in Cincy are all lumped into breweries, and the ciders are only an afterthought. Fairweather is a great place, and Tejano Dreams is a cider worthy of nothing less than a 9.0/10 from me. If your ever down Austin way, you really have to pay the place a visit.

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