Originally Posted by Bugeaterbrewing
Sugar causing cidery tastes is one of those brewing myths that just won't go away. The cause of the cidery taste is generally the result of using old LME. The myth is perpetuated when folks add sugar to the LME and then blame the sugar for the taste. A lot of beers, especially belgians and many barleywines are brewed with sugar and do not exhibit the cider flavors. If you are looking for something to attribute the flavor to you need to look elsewhere.
I disagree. Those Belgians and barleywines are indeed brewed with sugar, but the sugar makes up a relatively small portion of the fermentables in the beer. Barleywines tend to include some VERY strong flavor components that would overpower a slight cidery flavor. Belgian candy sugars and molasses are used in moderation for their unique flavors, rather than for providing fermentable material. The recipes that lend themselves to complaints of cider flavors tend to use corn sugar as a significant portion (if not the majority) of the fermentables. Any recipe calling for table sugar should generally just be avoided.
Anyway, back to the OP...what was your recipe? Though you only detect the smell of cider, smell and taste are closely linked, so the cause of a cidery smell should be the same as the cause of a similar taste.