Blog : Starcut Ciders Celebration

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!

Flamingo Juice and Otterson Apples

Flamingo Juice and Otterson Apples

Ok, before you ask, the name of this cider may be a teeny tiny bit misleading. No, no flamingos were harmed in the making of our newest cider, Flamingo Juice. That being said, we totally pulverized the sh*t out of some special apples for the base of this cider, and we think you’ll know why as soon as you get a glimpse of its awesome color. World, we give you Flamingo Juice.

So, let’s start at the beginning. Flamingo Juice is one of our newest cider varieties made from a combination of Otterson and crab apples. If the variety “Otterson” is not familiar to you, it’s no surprise! Otterson apples are a variety of red juiced apples that have been rediscovered and cultivated at Michigan State University (can I get a “GO GREEN”), by plant geneticist, Dr. Steve van Nocker and botanist Chris Gottschalk. Why cultivate this variety? To put it simply, Dr. van Nocker and Mr. Gottschalk have been seeking to find an apple with a high concentration of anthocyanins in the fruit’s flesh. Without getting too sciency, anthocyanins are a type of flavonoid. Beside making things red, anthocyanins are thought to have a positive impact on human health and in turn, many applications in the food and supplement industry. You can read more about the sciency stuff here.

So to make a long story even shorter, late last summer we were contacted by Dr. van Nocker and Mr. Gottschalk about pressing Otterson apples to use in an experimental cider. With the promise of an awesome color and fantastic flavor, we charged forward with pressing the apples and fermenting the cider. And thus, Flamingo Juice was born.

While we hope you’ve already had a chance to try Squishy, a dark red, semi-sweet hard cider we make from local, Northern Michigan cherries. We doubt you’ve seen a cider of this color made strictly from apples. Otterson apples are bred for the purpose of extracting the juice, priming them for cider making. They are acidic and have a tannin content that is beneficial for the production of cider. In addition to Otterson apples, Dr. van Nocker and team are working to develop new varieties of red juiced apples.

Flamingo Juice is a semi-dry hard cider made with red fleshed Otterson and crab apples. Try it on tap at our Starcut Ciders Celebration tomorrow, Saturday February 20th, at Short’s Brewing Company in Bellaire, MI.