Blake's Hard Cider
When I first picked up a can of Blake's Hard Cider Wake Fire (6.5% alcohol by volume) I was expecting something brewed with hot peppers. Instead, it is brewed from Blake's apples with a blend of Michigan grown cherries and orange peel. The fire refers to the slight ruby tint in the color that evokes a campfire and not the flavor. The fragrance has slightly less than medium intensity and combines apple, cherry and orange peel. The cider drops brilliant ruby gold kicking up a 1/2" white cap with poor retention. After the initial effervescence subsides occasional bubbles continue to rise leaving thin ring of white foam around the rim. The cider is moderately sweet with apple leading the flavors. The cherry and orange peel come on board mid-palate with the apple and cherry uniting by the finish and the orange peel finishing as a background spice. The acidity is medium and balances the apple sweetness. The tannins are moderate and provide just a hint of astringency on the finish. The flavors work well together. The cherries are there but do not overwhelm the apples and the cider finishes with a long medium dry apple cherry tail lightly seasoned by orange peel. Blake's manages to combine apple, cherry and orange and have the result taste like a cider rather than an alcho-pop. Blake's Wake Fire is very refreshing, thirst quenching, easy to drink and very repeatable. I rate it 81.