Next on my American Hard Cider review series is Two Rivers’ Dry English Cider. This Northern Californian Cider is a true new world cider. It’s based on an English dry style but could be possible French and American Oak. There is a lot going here, too much? Read on.

Two Rivers Dry English Cider Review
Two Rivers Cider is based of Sacramento in Northern California. The Apples come from Apple Hill a collection for apple growers roughly 50 miles east of Sacramento. They supply Two Rivers with over five different types of desert apples. As they are going for a Dry English still style they aged it in oak, for up to 2 years., Aging the cider give time for the last of the sugars consumed, drying out the cider. Secondly the oak’s flavour is imparted onto the liquid. Interestingly it’s French and American oak. Most likely used because of their availability in the Californian wine country.

Coming in just under 7% alcohol so as not to go into a different tax bracket. There is a push on at the moment to allow cider makers a bit more wiggle room on the alcohol content. After all cider is a natural product. Sugar level in the apples will vary year to year. And once yeast gets going it’ll keep going until the cider is bone dry.

The Nose

As soon as popped cap on this 750ml a wonderful smell burst out. It was like I walk in to a candy store. Boiled lollies and candy apples and maybe even some red liquorice.

The Taste

Normally a cider can start sweet but have a crisp finish. The Two Rivers has swapped that around a bit. It’s starts off dry and then the candy shop sweetness kicks in. Maybe it’s called Two Rivers because it has two rivers of flavour. It has the dryness like a soda water but then there is the happy appleiness of a much sweeter cider.

It does remind me of Willie Smiths Bone Dry but without their signature dustiness, which has been swapped out for something, more fruit forward. It’s a little bit cloudy but it’s not like you can see though your pint.

The Dry English Cider is pretty low on bubble front. I wonder if the bottle has suffered through time on a shelf in San Francisco, a transpacific flight, a ride on the back of a bike before being opened. I wonder if some of the dissolved CO2 might have escaped from under the crown cap.

Final Thoughts on The Dry English Cider

The bottle says Dry English. While is certainly dry, I don’t know about the English half of the equation. It tastes like a Tasmanian cider that was based on French cider but maybe it’s something English that I haven’t had the pleasure of trying … yet.

Having tried lots of Aussie cider and a pair of American ciders, I’ve come to realise that they share a common spirit. It’s the outward looking, experimental, “do the best with what you’ve got” philosophy of new world drinks producers. Two Rivers is very worldly. English inspired with apples from California, aged in French and American Oak. Enjoyed in Australia.

I love the fact that this is a 750ml bottle (yes I’m as surprised as you. American’s using the metric system. I was sure the bottle would say some weird measurement in hogsheads or furlongs) The odd thing is that the bottle has a flip cap for releasing the bottle. Does Two Rivers honestly think this is going to last long enough to need resealing?  It’s too tasty for that.

Product Dry English Cider
Company Two Rivers
Sweetness Dry
Alc/Vol 6.9%
Country of Origin USA
Region Sacramento, Northern California


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