Funny thing. I've traveled the midwest this fall looking for the perfect cider. Why? Shhhh....Secret BUT, I do think that your expectations exceed the consumer tastes. For example, I've had over 30 commercial ciders. People love them. I hate them. The market is there for people to drink really crappy cider. I made a gallon of experimental cider for Thanksgiving. I rated it a total failure. My college aged nieces and nephews LOVED it. Go figure. My tastes are very specific. I found one cider I think is in a class of its own. If I could come close to that I'd die a happy man. So far, I'm getting the bitter, sour, not very apple-ly somewhat alcohol at a high level, cloudy, not fizzy, jug o' crap that tastes alot like the commercial brands. I'd say doctor the daylights out of it until it tastes like you want it. At least you didn't make it from concentrate shipped in from China.