In our last blog post, we wrote about our great evening at The Shore Pub in Kirkwall. Whilst there, we asked for a recommendation for something to drink. And we were given the suggestion of Thistly Cross Cider. Thistly Cross Cider prides itself on making 6 varieties of cider, using high quality ingredients and Scottish apples. And of course, using high quality ingredients means crafting a refreshingly delicious cider!
Being indecisive as we usually are, we couldn’t decide which variety of Thistly Cross Cider to get. As we were feeling a bit adventurous after a day of exploring and adventures, we actually ended up trying all three varieties that the pub served. We tried their original cider – of course. We also sampled the Whisky Cask Cider and the Real Elderflower Cider.
We really liked all three ciders but our favourite would have to be the elderflower – crisp but floral at the same time, and not overly sweet at all. (We have tried several other elderflower ciders since then and none have compared to the Real Elderflower cider of Thistly Cross!) We also liked the Whisky Cask Cider, with a bit of a unique but subtle flavour from the whisky cask.
We will say that way back in 2015, ciders hadn’t yet broken onto the scene at home. So we found it refreshing to have something other than beer at the pub. Since 2015, we have slowly began to notice more and more ciders at our liquor stores and also in bars and pubs around town.
Despite that, we have yet to get our hands on some Thistly Cross cider at home! We have scoured our provincial and private liquor stores and have had no luck 😢.
So when the chance to visit Seattle came up last summer, we decided to see whether we could find any Thistly Cross South of the border. Doing our research beforehand, we found Total Wine, a liquor store somewhat close to our hotel, carries Thistly Cross cider. And so, right before catching our bus back to Vancouver, we went in search of the elusive Thistly Cross cider.
Total Wine is a large store with all varieties of liquor. Let’s just say we were tempted by a lot of their offerings! 😋 We finally came to the cider section and… Voilà – there it was! The Thistly Cross cider that we had been searching for. Unfortunately they only had the Traditional, even though their website said they also carried the Whisky Cask. We contemplated grabbing a whole bunch of bottles to stock up, until we remembered that we would have to carry them for the 20 minute walk back to our hotel and also for the bus journey from Bellevue back into Seattle and then… back to Vancouver. 😥 So, we settled for 2 bottles.
Besides the Thistly Cross, we also saw some ciders that we frequently drank in Ireland and the UK – Magners and Strongbow. We couldn’t resist picking up the Magners to remember the amazing time we had in Ireland. And we spotted a Cherry Blossom Strongbow that we JUST had to try!
We lugged our purchases from Seattle back home to Vancouver and couldn’t wait to try them! 🍻
So, was this international trek to source Thistly Cross Cider worth it?
Yes! We still loved the crisp and easy to drink cider. Wish we had brought more home!
The scotch tries to join the cider party as well… 🤣
The Cherry Blossom Cider by Strongbow was really interesting! It was flowery and fruity but not to the point of being sickly sweet. It was still refreshing and crisp.
We had some fun pouring it out 😋!
We are already plotting our next trip to Seattle to stock up on more Thistly Cross Ciders. Perhaps they’ll have the Real Strawberry cider next time – that’s one that we REALLY want to try! Ioana also got us some ciders to try from her recent trip to Romania. So we’ll have to have a cider tasting party real soon!
And here’s to hoping we get Thistly Cross cider here in Vancity soon so we don’t have to make the cross border trek to get our hands on some!
Hope you enjoyed our little International cider journey! We’ll take you back to Orkney and Scotland next week – stay tuned 😊
From Vancouver with Love,
Ioana and Natalie
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