This is a cider with any combination of “botanicals” added. Hopped ciders are included in this category. Other examples are ciders with “apple pie” spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice), ginger, lemon grass, herbal tea blends, etc.
Like a white wine with complex flavors. The apple character must marry with the botanicals and give a balanced result.
Clear to brilliant. Color appropriate to added botanicals.
Aroma / Flavor
The cider character must be present and must fit with the botanicals. As with a fruit cider, it is a fault if the botanicals dominate; a judge might ask, Would this be different if neutral spirits replaced the cider? Oxidation of either the base cider or the additions is a fault.
Average or more. Cider may be tannic from effect of botanicals but must not be bitter from over-extraction.
Entrants MUST specify carbonation level (3 levels). Entrants MUST specify sweetness (5 categories). Entrants MUST specify all botanicals added. If hops are used, entrant must specify variety/varieties used.
1.045 - 1.070
0.995 - 1.010
5% - 9%