Blog : Hard Cider

It’s Mojito O’Clock Somewhere!

It’s Mojito O’Clock Somewhere!

It’s no secret that some of our favorite beers and ciders possesses a distinctive cocktail flair. From the Gin & Tonic mimicking Melt My Brain from Short’s Brewing Company, to the tequila barrel aged Erraticus 5, our desire for spirit inspired ferments is only growing!

To quench your thirst this month, we’re introducing the next cider in our Erraticus Series. Erraticus 12 is a Mojito inspired wild cider fermented with lime, wild mint, and Jonagold apples from Altonen Orchards. Light straw in color with a slight haze, Erraticus 12 smells sweet and tangy with notes of citrus and mint. Tart flavors of tangy apple and lime are followed by notes of mint. Erraticus 12 is crisp, refreshing, and has a very dry finish.

It’s Mojito O’Clock somewhere, and that somewhere is in Bellaire! Erraticus 12 bottles are now available at the Short’s Brewing Company pub and Short’s Mart. You can take a bottle of this highball cider on your next adventure for only $11.00, no bottle limit.

We Shall Call It Squishy

We Shall Call It Squishy

What is this red, jellyfish adorned cider you ask? In the fall of 2014 we first conjured this freakishly delicious Michigan apple and cherry cider and we decided then, without any hesitation that we shall call it Squishy and it will be ours and it will be our favorite cherry cider! Fermented with only the brightest crimson orbs from our friends at King Orchards, Squishy is now available to you just in time for cherry season.

Squishy (6.3% ABV) is a semi-sweet cider made with Michigan cherries. Ruby red in color with appealing sweet and sugary aromatics, this cider’s initial flavors of dark fruit shift toward a bold tartness that dries the palate between tastes.

As natives of cherry country, we’re proud to bring you the ONLY cherry cider worth sippin’ this summer. With the National Cherry Festival just around the corner (another fantastic reason to pay us a visit in the Northwest corner of the mitten), we’re stoked to say that Squishy is now headed to taps and coolers in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Colorado.

Taste the fruit of the season this week with a pint of Squishy!

Starcut Ciders Announces Erraticus in the Wild

Starcut Ciders Announces Erraticus in the Wild

Elk Rapids, Mich. – Starcut Ciders, a division of Short’s Brewing Company dedicated to fermenting Northern Michigan hard ciders announces Erraticus in the Wild; a series of on and off premise events showcasing the company’s rare, barrel aged and wild ciders, Erraticus.

Taking place on June 1st, 2017, Erraticus in the Wild events will be hosted throughout Short’s and Starcut’s mid-west distribution footprint.  It will be the first time Erraticus ciders will be available for sale in bottles outside the Short’s Brewing Company pub in Bellaire, MI.  

All Erraticus in the Wild events will feature Erraticus 10. Released in honor of Erraticus in the Wild day, Erraticus 10 is a wild cider fermented with peach and cranberry and aged in red wine barrels. Additional Starcut Ciders, including flagships Pulsar and Octorock, as well as current seasonal, Immortal Jelly, will be available at many event locations.

Erraticus in the Wild events will be held at Horrock’s Farm Market, Lansing, MI; Soup Spoon Cafe, Lansing, MI; The Beverage Company, Traverse City, MI; Taproot Cider House, Traverse City, MI; White’s Party Store, Marquette, MI; Stucko’s Pub and Grill, Marquette, MI; Oliver T’s Market, Grand Blanc, MI; HopCat, Kalamazoo, MI; 8 Degrees Plato, Ferndale, MI; 8 Degrees Plato, Detroit MI; Beer Grotto, Ann Arbor, MI; The Michigan Taproom at Stardust Lanes, Saginaw, MI; The Open Bottle, Tinley Park, IL; Trixie’s Liquor, Madison, WI; The Koelschip, Indianapolis, IN; and Banter, Cleveland, OH

Immortal Jelly is Here to Join The Parade!

Immortal Jelly is Here to Join The Parade!

Last year, we introduced you to the incomparable Immortal Jelly. With flavors rooted in a tried and true Short’s Brewing Co. flagship beer, we had a hunch that this cider would be a hit. Fermented with Michigan apples and not one, not two, but FOUR different berries, this fruit-forward cider knocks it out of the park and while it hasn’t been long since we’ve brewed ‘er up, we couldn’t imagine going any longer without this tart, refreshing, fresh from the farmstand cider back on store shelves.

Immortal Jelly (5.2% ABV ) is a semi-dry hard cider inspired by Short’s Brewing Company’s Soft Parade. Immortal Jelly is fermented with Michigan apples and a blend of raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, and strawberries. This cider is rose in color and has scents of tart fruit. Immortal Jelly’s complex blend of berry fruit flavors provides a big tart acidity up front before a semi-dry finish.

Immortal Jelly is now available alongside flagship ciders Pulsar (semi-dry), Octorock (semi-sweet), and our outgoing seasonal, Phuzz. Find this naturally gluten free cider in bottles and pouring from taps in Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Colorado. Looking for Starcut Ciders near you? Check out our Starcut Ciders locator.   

Erraticus Elita has arrived

Erraticus Elita has arrived

In the summer of 2014, our Head Cider Maker Tony & co. set out to launch Starcut Ciders. From name (anybody ever hear of “Zeus’s Juices”?) to logo and apple blends, we knew we had something good on our hands. Something that if carefully crafted would serve to afford our crew a new avenue for creativity in fermentation and to showcase the beauty of our home in Northern Michigan.

Fast forward 2+ years and you’ll see, a lot has changed. From a growth in distribution, to cans (hello Octorock at the beach) and the introduction of three seasonal ciders (Phuzz, Immortal Jelly, and Squishy), we’ve transformed into the Starla driving, Erraticus lovin’, space creature digging company you see today.

Which brings us to the inspiration behind our latest release, Elita. Inspired by a blend of five unique barrel aged ciders and the notion that our beloved Starla would make a fantastic Transformer, Erraticus Elita is a sparkling, bottle conditioned blend of barrel aged ciders. Bright and rose-colored with plentiful effervescence, this sparkling cider has a complex aroma of oak, apple, and farmhouse funk with just a hint of currant. Upon first sip, a rush of carbonation cleanses the pallet. Meticulously blended flavors of apple, tart currant, oak, and funk work together harmoniously. Like any sparkling wine, Erraticus Elita is best served chilled.  

Like juice transforms into cider, Starcut Ciders has transformed from a fledgling brand to the third largest cider maker in the mitten state. So today, we’re taking time to celebrate our accomplishments and look forward to years of cider making in Northern Michigan to come. Join us at the Short’s Brewing Company pub today (February 25th) from 11:00 am – 11:59 pm as we raise a glass of bubbly cider to the future of Starcut! We’ll have 10 Starcut Ciders on tap, bottles of Erraticus Elita ($18.00 per bottle, no bottle limit), new Starcut Ciders merch, and live music by Turbo Pup at 8:30 pm. We hope to see you here!

Hump Day Bareback (and Hot Loins)

Hump Day Bareback (and Hot Loins)

February is here and you know what that means,
It’s time for a beer that makes you weak in the knees.

This year’s a little different, we doubled our efforts,
So you and your sweetie can have two fermented beverages.

We’ve brewed a two pack filled with one beer and one cider,
Made with aphrodisiacs, they’re sure to excite (him or) her.

Hot Loins 2.0,  is sinfully delicious,
Paired with Bareback from Starcut Ciders, you’ll be feeling amorous.  

Honey, passion flower, rose hips, and vanilla,
These ingredients constitute some romantic beverages that are killa’.

44 ounces for only $19.99,
This Yours and Mine two pack is simply sublime.

Love is blind (or at least a little blurry),
Pick up a two pack for your sweetie, get to Short’s Mart or the pub  in a hurry!

Starcut Ciders Celebrates Two Years and Gains Title of 3rd Largest Cider Maker in MI

Starcut Ciders Celebrates Two Years and Gains Title of 3rd Largest Cider Maker in MI

Starcut Ciders, a craft cider brand produced by Short’s Brewing Company, is celebrating two years handcrafting hard ciders this month. Launched at the Short’s Brewing Company pub in November 2014, Starcut Ciders began bottled cider distribution in August 2015. Experiencing tremendous growth, in just two years Starcut Ciders is now the third largest cider maker in Michigan and a strong regional brand.

Regularly distributed in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Colorado, the company has sold approximately 315,000 liters or 2,700 barrels of hard cider in 2016. According to Short’s CEO and Creative Engineer, Joe Short “We are thrilled to have created a locally grown brand that’s connecting with consumers in Michigan and throughout the Midwest. Between artwork by the legendary Don Pendleton and the well balanced and unique ciders crafted by our team, we’ve found a winning combination.”

According to the company’s Head Cider Maker, Tony Hansen, cider fans have much to look forward to in the years to come. “We have a lot of exciting cider projects happening soon including a bottled sparkling cider to be released at our Starcut Ciders Celebration (February 25th, 2017), a new fruit cider, and a handful of experimental ciders. We also plan to increase our number of Erraticus wild cider and barrel aged offerings in the new year.”

In 2017 the company will continue to distribute flagship ciders Octorock (semi-sweet) and Pulsar (semi-dry) and three seasonal varieties; Immortal Jelly, Squishy, and Phuzz. In addition to the ciders distributed by Starcut, the company will continue to bottle their Erraticus Series. Erraticus is a series of rare, small batch, wild ciders fermented with apples sourced from Northern Michigan orchards. Erraticus 5 and Erraticus 6 are currently available for sale at the Short’s Brewing Company pub and Short’s Mart in Bellaire, MI. Erraticus 7, a spruce cider, will be released later this season.

Party like the Pilgrims with Erraticus 6

Party like the Pilgrims with Erraticus 6

In case you’ve never taken an American history course, we’re here to fill you in. Despite their puritanical beliefs, it’s widely assumed that our friends the Pilgrims knew how to throw a party. Between a lack of potable drinking water and the difficulty found in storing the fresh stuff, hard cider was not only the tastiest, but one of the safest beverages for the first colonizers to consume. With mugs of home brew and wild fermented, hard apple cider in hand, they gave thanks for friends, family, and dry land in November 1621.

So in keeping with tradition, we’re thrilled to be releasing the sixth cider in our Erraticus series just in time for your Thanksgiving feast. Erraticus 6 (6.4% ABV) is an oak aged wild cider fermented with Michigan apples and Black Currants. This wild cider has a light purple hue and an aroma reminiscent of Pinot Noir with notes of fig, currant, apple, and oak. Erraticus 6 erupts with a burst of oak and tart currant flavors that lead into a finish that is well balanced and dry.

Available only at the Short’s Brewing Company pub and Short’s Mart, you can take a bottle of this historical nectar home for only $18.00. Party like the pilgrims this turkey day, bring Erraticus to the table!

P.S. Looking for more cider-filled Thanksgiving inspiration? Check out our list of cider spiked holiday recipes.

Take The Edge Off Holiday Cooking with Starcut Ciders

Take The Edge Off Holiday Cooking with Starcut Ciders

Don’t let your Turkey Day menu throw you for a loop. We’ve got five Starcut Ciders recipes lovingly crafted by former Short’s Liberator, Brian Talpos and Liberation Specialist, Jon “Woj” Wojtowicz to take the edge off this holiday season. From Starcut Ciders Cranberry Sauce to a Pulsar Turkey Brine, we’ve got your Thanksgiving shopping and cooking mapped out below. Please your holiday crowd this season by cooking and toasting with Starcut Ciders!

 

Starcut Cranberry Cider Sauce
Ingredients:

  • 16 oz cranberries
  • 1 cup Starcut Ciders, Pulsar
  • 1.5 cups white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1 cinnamon stick

Directions:

  1. In a medium sized saucepan over medium heat dissolve the sugar in the Pulsar and orange juice.
  2. Stir in the cranberries and cinnamon stick.
  3. Cook until the cranberries start to pop and the sauce begins to thicken, around 10-15 min.
  4. Transfer Starcut Cranberry Cider Sauce from saucepan to a serving bowl, allowing it to continue thickening as it cools.  Remove the cinnamon stick before serving.

 

Starcut Apple Sausage Cider Stuffing
Ingredients:

  • 4 cups cubed white bread (around 7 slices)
  • 5 cups cubed wheat bread (around 8 slices)
  • 1 lb pork sausage
  • 2 cups diced white onion
  • 2 cups diced celery
  • 2 tart apples, peeled, cored and diced (Gala)
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup toasted pecans, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried sage
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 cup Starcut Ciders, Octorock (room temp with as little carbonation as possible)
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • kosher salt and black pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Spread the white and whole wheat bread cubes in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Bake for 5 to 7 minutes in the preheated oven, stirring once as bread bakes, until evenly toasted. Transfer toasted bread cubes to a large mixing bowl.
  3. In a large skillet, cook the sausage and onions over medium heat, stirring and breaking up into smaller crumbles until evenly browned.
  4. Remove sausage using a slotted spoon and add it to the large mixing bowl with the toasted bread cubes.  Empty pan of grease.
  5. In the same skillet, melt the  2 tablespoons of butter and add the celery, apples, dried cranberries, pecans, sage, rosemary, parsley and thyme. Cook, stirring, for 3-5 minutes to blend flavors.  Season to taste with kosher salt and black pepper.
  6. Add celery, apples, cranberries, pecans and seasoning mixture to the large mixing bowl with the toasted bread cubes and sausage. Drizzle with cider and melted butter and mix lightly until bread cubes have absorbed all the liquid.
  7. Allow stuffing to cool completely before loosely stuffing into a turkey (around 4 cups for a 12 lb turkey).  Remaining stuffing can be baked in a buttered 9″ x 13″ covered casserole dish at 350 degrees Farenheit for 30-40 minutes.  Uncover, stir stuffing, and return to oven for 10-15 more minutes until golden brown.

 

Starcut Ciders Gravy
Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Octorock
  • 4 cups turkey stock
  • 2 onions (finely chopped)
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh sage or 3/4 teaspoon dried
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour

Directions:

  1. Melt the butter in a skilled and add the onions, sweat until soft (about 5 minutes).
  2. Sprinkle the flour over the butter/onion mixture and cook on medium for 5 more minutes, stirring every minute or so.
  3. Add the Octorock and turkey stock and bring the mixture to a simmer, then turn the heat to low and cook for another 20 minutes (gravy will thicken).
  4. Finally, add the chopped sage and season with salt and pepper.

 

Cider Brine for Turkey
Ingredients:

  • 4 cups apple cider
  • 4 cups Pulsar
  • 2 cups coarse salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 1/2 cup dark-brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon whole allspice
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 4 sprigs fresh oregano
  • 2 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 gallon ice water

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients, except the last five, to a large stock pot and bring to a boil
  2. Remove from the heat and let stand for 10-15 minutes
  3. Add remaining ingredients, including ice water, and cool
  4. Strain mixture, and it’s ready to go

 

Octorock Braised Kale
Ingredients:

  • 8 quarts of dinosaur kale that has been de-stemmed and cleaned
  • 2 large yellow onions (sliced)
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped garlic
  • 2 sticks of unsalted butter
  • 1 quart of Octorock
  • 1 cup of chicken stock
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. In a large dutch oven, melt the butter, then add the onions and garlic and cook on low heat until they are soft.
  2. Start adding in the kale, by the handful, until it all fits in the pot
  3. Add the Octorock and chicken stock and cover with a lid, cook on low heat for 45 minutes to an hour, then season with salt and pepper