WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., Sept. 25, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — As farmers head into orchards and vineyards for the yearly harvest, many people are unaware of the similarities between cider apples and wine grapes. Both fruits thrive under ideal natural growing conditions and boast thousands of different flavorful varieties; hard apple cider was even served as an alternative to Champagne after WWII. Strongbow Hard Apple Ciders’ new Artisanal Blend is a toast to heirloom cider apples captured in a lively, semi-sweet cider that appeals to both cider lovers and wine drinkers.

The flavor aficionados at the Beverage Testing Institute awarded Artisanal Blend a Silver Medal and highly recommend it for its nod to the past and modern inviting flavor1. This praise is a result of Strongbow’s 125-year commitment to creating great-tasting, innovative cider flavors. Strongbow cares for more than 1 billion apples in its own orchards in the UK and Belgium, and is the largest apple grower for cider-making in the world.

“Our generations-old cider-making tradition is about celebrating the purity and farm-fresh natural flavors of the apples we care for in our orchards,” said Dr. Paul van der Aar, Master Brewer at HEINEKEN USA. “We combine old-world simplicity with modern skill and artistry to blend the apples for a consistent, complex-yet-approachable flavor that perfectly balances sharpness, natural sweetness and bitterness.”

The ‘Great Blend Trend’
The time is ripe for Strongbow’s new Artisanal Blend, as blends have become increasingly popular among young wine enthusiasts. According to Nielsen, the “great blend trend” can be attributed to people’s penchant for accessible adventure. Fifty percent of Americans said blends are a great way to experiment with wine2.

The cider makers at Strongbow experimented by mixing a myriad of apples from their own orchards to perfect the flavor profile in Artisanal Blend. In the end, three heirloom varieties are featured: Dabinett, Major, and Harry Master’s Jersey. These three varieties come together with the ripe notes of the apples’ natural sweetness balanced by the flavor of grassy earth and an acidic pop of tartness. Layers of aroma that evoke kiwi, melon and mango stimulate the senses while bubbles provide the palate with a crisp refreshing taste. The blend also has a rustic hazy appearance that harkens back to past generations. This lively, sessionable cider is 6% ABV, gluten free and has 181 calories per 11.2 fl. oz. serving.

Artisanal Blend joins the Strongbow family of award-winning ciders including Gold Apple, Cherry Blossom and Orange Blossom. All contain no artificial flavors or colors. Artisanal Blend is available this September in dedicated 6-pack bottles, variety 12-pack and variety 24-pack. All Strongbow flavors will be available in a limited edition mini-can 4-pack this September for a suggested retail price of $1.00 in most markets, letting cider lovers sample each Strongbow variety before choosing their favorite.

To find Strongbow near you, visit the product locater at strongbow.com. For new ideas on how you can mix it up with Strongbow, follow us on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram.

About HEINEKEN USA
HEINEKEN USA, Inc., the nation’s leading upscale beer importer, is a subsidiary of HEINEKEN NV, the world’s most international brewer. Core brands imported into the U.S. are Heineken┬«, the world’s most international premium beer brand, the Dos Equis franchise, the Tecate franchise and Strongbow Hard Apple Ciders. HEINEKEN USA also imports Amstel Light, Newcastle Brown Ale, Red Stripe, Sol, Indio, Carta Blanca and Bohemia brands. For the latest information on our company and brands, follow us on Twitter @HeinekenUSACorp, or visit HEINEKENUSA.com.

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