In addition to beer, McMenamins also produces wine and hard cider. I knew of their wine, but I wasn't aware of their cider until they invited me to pick up a sample mini-growler of their seasonal Edgefield Blackberry Cider.
While I enjoy ciders, I like them fairly dry. So I'm always a bit leery of fruit flavored ciders because they tend to veer towards the sweet side. Here's McMenamins' description:
"As the seasons change, so does our specialty cider, crafted at Edgefield Winery. Dark garnet in color, the aroma of fresh blackberry bursts from the glass. The tart blackberry component is balanced out by a small amount of residual sugar, with a hint of apple as well."
I was pleasantly surprised by what I tasted. While it was sweet, as expected, it was nicely balanced by a near mouth puckering tartness. McMenamins' description of this cider is spot on. It has loads of blackberry aroma and flavor. It doesn't taste like an apple cider with blackberry. Instead, it's more like a blackberry cider with a bit of apple.
If you're a fan of blackberry, you should give this a try. It's available now through the end of October at McMenamins' pubs and restaurants.