Beer of the Week: Cisco Lady of the Woods

Posted on March 22nd, 2011

About the Beer: Off the coast of Massachusetts, on the tiny island of Nantucket, lies a brewery called Cisco.  Though a small brewery, Cisco exports beer to most of the eastern seaboard, including all of New England, the Mid-Atlantic, and even down to Florida. However, those outside of the Massachsetts area might be a little less familiar with the brew we’re going to look at this week: The Lady of the Woods.

The Cisco motto, “Nice beer if you can get it,” rings remarkably true with this one.  As part of a barrel series that Cisco is calling simply “The Woods,” The Lady of the Woods is a version of their witbier, the Grey Lady, that has been aged in oak chardonay barrels. The result is a sharper, sourer, and more complex version of the original – one that’s a bit more like a malty sparkling wine than a beer.

In a Nutshell: Cisco’s bubbly Lady of the Woods is a tart, tasty treat for beer-lovers and newbies alike.

Review: If you’ve had the pleasure of tasting Cisco’s fantastic Grey Lady, you’ll be familiar with the basic flavor of this beer. However, don’t underestimate how much difference a oak barrel and some aging can make. In addition the bottle I opened had been stored in my ad hoc beer cellar for several extra months. This beer pours a beautiful yellow color puntatued by an abundance of bubbles – this is a very carbonated beer, but it works well with the flavors. In fact the bubbles heighten the degree to which this tastes like a sweet champagne. It’s dry with subtle tart apple & grape flavors and a slightly more malty aftertaste. On the bottle they claim that, “This is an adventurous ale for an adventuous palate.” While I think that’s partially true, I also think this is a remarkably accessible beer – one that might be a great cross-over for someone who enjoys wine but thinks all beer tastes like Bud Lite.

This is certainly a nice beer. If you can get it, get it.

Rating: 4 out of 5


  • Anonymous

    A personal favorite of mine. The perfect blend of tart and sweet.

  • hi chris- im a friend of your lady.. read her blog and live in the boston area, and popped over here today after reading that you too, are a lover of craft beer! thought you might be interested in checking out, my boyfriend’s website/work/lifestyle that makes me totally jealous 🙂

  • that’s awesome. thanks for sharing. you two should come to our next event. we are doing a scottish beer tasting at The Haven in JP. we will post more details as time gets closer. [chris]

  • Mike Malmberg

    Its a nice beer, but unfortunately it is no longer brewed in Nantucket. The brewery got shut down by the DEM, and they are wholly brewed out by Mercury Brewing, most famous for Ipswich.