Monday, May 9, 2016

From Sweden With Love: Hard Cider

Sweden has given us some great gifts - Ingmar Bergman, Absolut vodka, IKEA - and some which are not so great - Dancing Queen, Pippi Longstocking, IKEA. Scandinavian beers have never excited me too much, vodka leaves me shaken not stirred and wine is almost nowhere to be found in Sweden’s upper latitude.

A company named Rekorderlig offered me a taste of their flavored hard cider, and I liked it even though I am not usually wowed by flavored alcoholic beverages. My wife, who favors sweet drinks a bit more than I, loved it.  Rekorderlig was created more than two decades ago at Åbro brewery in Vimmerby, just outside of Stockholm. Its promoters say it is delicious straight from the bottle, over ice with fresh fruit or mixed into cocktails, and they are right.

They suggest pouring their Strawberry-Lime hard cider over ice, garnished with a lime wedge. Spilling some vodka or gin into it is perfectly alright.

This beverage has a beautiful red color with a hint of orange, which makes it look very strawberry-like in the glass. The nose is a big strawberry festival all its own, and quite a natural one at that. It doesn't have the candy-coated Jolly Rancher aroma, but one of real strawberries and stems. The sip shows delightful fruit - no real complexity here - with that lime flavor making an appearance.