Finnriver Fire Barrel

Review of Finnriver Fire Barrel.   I’ve tried the previous version of this (see here) as well as this new version on tap (see here), but now I’m reviewing a new bottle in more detail.  I’ve also tried most of Finnriver’s lineup (see here).

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Cider:  Fire Barrel
Cidery:  Finnriver
Cidery Location:  Chimacum WA
ABV:  9.0%
How Supplied:  750ml bottle (and draft)

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Availability:  Limited release.  Finnriver ciders are sold in WA, OR, CA, AZ, NV, TX, IL, CO, and Alberta & BC Canada (detailed info here).  They also have an online store (which can ship to WA, OR, CA, AK, CO, MN, FL, & WA D.C.), but I didn’t see this one at the time of review.

Cider Description:  A robust, bold and balanced taste of traditional cider apples— with a whisper of whiskey and rye spice; smoky aromas; notes of caramel and vanilla; and a mature, tannic finish.

100% Finnriver orchard organic cider apples: Chisel Jersey, Brown Snout, Harry Master’s Jersey, Medaille d’Or, Frequin rouge, Dabinette & Major.

Carefully farmcrafted and fermented with a blend of homegrown Finnriver orchard organic cider apples and white wine yeast in stainless steel tanks. Once the fermentation is complete, we cask the cider in Washington rye whiskey barrels for 5 months to impart depth and character. This award-winning cider was inspired by PNW cidermaker Drew Zimmerman, whose mentorship and cider apple trees helped us establish our orchard.

After chilling, allow the cider to warm slightly and serve; we favor Fire Barrel in a Belgian-style tulip glass. Try it with roasted pork, slow roasted brisket, a blue cheese burger, cured meats, smoked cheeses or any other hearty, savory fare. Caramelize an onion with Firebarrel cider and add to a dish for a feisty meal.

Cidery Description:  At Finnriver we gather and ferment the flavors of the land to offer you farmcrafted hard ciders and spirited fruit wines. We are inspired by the allure of the fruit, the ancient history of the craft of fermentation and the lively traditions we now seek to revive.  Our mission is to inspire a deeper connection to the land that sustains us….Some of these ciders are small-batch, seasonal and labor-intensive. Others are produced with contemporary methods and more readily available year-round…Finnriver grows over twenty varieties of traditional and heirloom apples in our organic orchard, to feature in our traditional and specialty ciders.

Finnriver has a great illustrated product guide (see here).  They have a tasting room and are on the Olympic Pennsylvania cider route, along with the Eaglemount and Alpenfire cideries.

Price:  $25
Where Bought:  Special Brews in Lynnwood WA
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  My husband got this for me for Christmas!  He didn’t know I had already tried this new release, but had remembered me loving the old one.

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First Impression:  Light caramel amber hue.  Nearly still.  Smells of cider apples, caramel, and bourbon.

Tasting Notes:  Semi-dry.  Very light bodied.  Low tartness and acidity.  Low to moderate bitterness and tannins.  No sourness or funk.  Notes of bittersweet cider apples, caramel, brown sugar, leather, orange, bourbon, smoke, and oak.  Long bitter finish.  Moderate apple flavor and flavor intensity.  Low barrel influence and sessionability.  Low to moderate bourbon influence.  Moderate to high complexity.

Opinion:  I enjoyed it.  However, compared to the old release, this is a disappointment.  The price is significantly higher, it is drier, less flavorful, more bitter, and thinner bodied.  I agree to serve this at cellar temperature (between fridge & room temp), as colder would mute the flavor.  I even enjoy ciders of this style at room temperature.

Most Similar to:  Other ciders from bittersweet cider apples.  This reminds me of English cider, but with the added bourbon and oak.

Closing Notes:   I am curious about next year’s release, and if it will be more like the previous version that I absolutely love.

Have you tried Finnriver Fire Barrel?  What did you think?

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Chatter Creek Barrel Roll

Review of Chatter Creek’s Barrel Roll, a bourbon barrel aged cider.  It is my first time trying this, but I’ve previously had their Pilot Project Batch ‘1’ Golden Cider and Chaider Clipper.

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Cider:  Barrel Roll
Cidery:  Chatter Creek
Cidery Location:  Woodinville WA
ABV:  9.4%
How Supplied:  500ml bottle, crown cap, attached flip top
Style:  American craft cider from dessert apples, bourbon barrel aged

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Availability:  Seattle WA area, plus online sales (to AK, AZ, CA, DC, HI, IL, MN, MO, OR, and WA)

Cider Description:  This cider was aged for 4 months in American oak barrels that had been used to age JP Trodden Bourbon Whiskey. It is bone dry and displays the balance of oak and apple aromas. About a third of the apples used in the blend are Granny Smith, which provide the nice snap in the finish. Only 4 barrels of this were produced and it is only available through the winery tasting room or a few select taps around town. 

Cidery Description:  Gordon Rawson has been making grape wine since the 80s, and started Chatter Creek in 1996.  Cider is a more recent venture however.  All the cider names and labels are aviation-themed.  They have a tasting room in Woodinville WA, Northeast of Seattle.

Price:  $9.99
Where Bought:  Brigid’s Bottleshop in Edmonds WA
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  Browsing.  This was my first time visiting this bottle shop.  They had a great bottle selection, but had higher prices than anywhere else I’d seen.  They also had 1 rotating cider on tap I think.

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First Impression:  Light straw yellow hue.  Very low carbonation.  Smells mild, of alcohol (bourbon).

Tasting Notes:  Dry.  Light bodied.  Low to moderate tartness and acidity.  Hints of bitterness and tannins.  No sourness or funk.  Notes of bourbon, oak, vanilla, and lemon.  Long boozy finish.  Low flavor intensity, apple flavor, barrel influence, and sessionability.  Moderate bourbon influence.  Low to moderate complexity.

My Opinion:  I liked the bourbon flavor.  However, overall the cider was a bit harsh for my tastes, between the dryness and high ABV, and I prefer a higher flavor intensity.  I think backsweetening with honey would have been great (to end up with a flavor profile like Big B’s Grizzly Brand or 2 Towns The Bad Apple).  I’d recommend this for folks who enjoy bourbon / spirits.

Most Similar to:  Locust Bourbon Barrel Aged (although that was higher ABV) and Carlton Cyderworks Slake (although that was semi-dry)

Closing Notes:  Of the three ciders I’ve tried from Chatter Creek so far, my favorite was Pilot Project Batch ‘1’ Golden Cider.

Have you tried barrel aged cider?  What did you think?

Art+Science Symbiosis

Review of Art+Science Symbiosis cider, 50% apple + 50% grape.  It is my first time trying anything from this cidery.

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Cider:  Symbiosis, 2015
Cidery:  Art+Science
Cidery Location:  Sheridan OR
ABV:  10.8%
How Supplied:  750ml crown capped bottle with attached flip top
Ingredients:  50% foraged apple + 50% Grüner Veltliner white grape
Style:  American craft apple & grape wine, wild yeast fermented, ancestral method, white wine barrel aged for 10 months, secondary fermentation in bottle

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Availability:  Oregon (especially Portland), California, Washington, New Orleans LA, and New York NY, plus online sales

Cider Description:  Symbiosis: any type of a close and long-term biological interaction between two different species, be it mutualistic, commensalistic, or parasitic. Symbiosis is made from foraged apples in the Willamette Valley and Grüner Veltliner grown at Johan Vineyards in the Willamette Valley. Grüner Veltliner is the most widely planted white grape in Austria. The apples are milled and pressed and the apple juice is added to the destemmed and crushed Grüner Veltliner. It is 50% apples and 50% white grapes and is naturally fermented with native yeast on the skins of the gruner for 3 weeks then aged in used white wine barrels for 10 months. Then it is re-sweetened and put in bottle to finish a secondary fermentation to add some carbonation. This beverage is made with no added acid, no forced carbonation and no pasteurization. It is the most vinous cider we produce with great mid pallet weight. Take a sip and take a breath of fresh air….. 

Cidery Description:  Welcome to Art+Science! We are natural cider, perry, and wine producers using primarily foraged fruit & fermenting with indigenous yeast in rural Yamhill County, Oregon. We are working towards building a tasting room in 2018, but we welcome visitors by appointment to drink at our kitchen table with us!

They are associated with Roshamboart Farm and started commercially making wine in 2011 and cider in 2013.

Price:  $12.99 (looks like I got a good deal, as the online price is $28)
Where Bought:  K&L Wines in San Francisco CA
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  Browsing, while we were in port during a cruise

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First Impression:  Moderate hazy yellow hue.  Low carbonation.  Smells of citrus, vinegar, and yeast.

Tasting Notes:  Semi-dry.  Light to medium bodied.  Low to moderate tartness.  Moderate acidity.  Low sourness, tannins, bitterness, and funk.  Notes of grapefruit, lemon, honey, yeast, white grape, vinegar, oak, must, and cork.  Long warming sour finish.  Moderate flavor intensity.  Low apple & grape flavor, barrel influence, and sessionability.  Moderate to high complexity.

My Opinion:  I was ambivalent about this cider.  I didn’t dislike it, but I wouldn’t choose it again.  It was definitely nice to try though, and very unique, wine-like.  A lot of effort obviously went into producing it.  I would recommend this cider for folks who enjoy a more rustic farmhouse-style cider and/or Spanish Sidra.  Note that this was the front of the palate sourness, not as brash (to me at least) as Sidra, but did have a bit of that vinegar type flavor.

Most Similar to:  The only white grape cider I think I’ve had is 2 Towns Cidre Moscato (with Muscat grapes), but I’m not sure that was co-fermented, and it was a completely different style.  However, the rustic (wild fermented) style of this cider reminded me of Runcible Cider Light of the Moon, Alpenfire Pirate’s Plank, Angry Orchard Walden Hollow, and Wrangletown Cider Co.’s lineup.  The other ciders I’ve had with a white grape flavor were sweeter & fruity, which this cider was not.

Closing Notes:  At the same shop I also picked up a bottle of Art+Science’s 100% Quince cider (although in that case it would just be fruit wine).  Their website says they are distributed in WA, and I was told it was through ‘Walden’, but I don’t think I’ve spotted anything made by them yet.

Have you tried Art+Science Symbiosis?  What did you think?

Liberty Reserve Series Porter’s Perfection Single Varietal

Review of Liberty’s Reserve Series Porter’s Perfection Single Varietal.  It is my first time trying this, but I have had their Manchurian Crabapple Single VarietalCrabensteinEnglish StyleAbbessStonewall Dry Fly Whiskey Barrel AgedGravensteinCellar Series #G15New World StyleCellar Series (unknown)McIntoshGolden Russet SVSpokane Scrumpy, and Hewe’s Crab.

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Cider:  Reserve Series #0216 Porter’s Perfection Single Varietal
Cidery:  Liberty Ciderworks
Cidery Location:  Spokane WA
ABV:  8.6%
How Supplied:  750ml corked bottles
Style:  American craft cider from Porter’s Perfection cider apples, barrel aged

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Availability:  In general you can find their ciders in Washington and Oregon (see a list of locations here).  However, this variety was very limited (12 cases), mostly just their tap room and cider club members, plus possibly online sales through Vino Shipper (although at the time of review it was not listed)

Cider Description:  Porter’s Perfection apples are another UK favorite, valued in blending and as a stand-alone. Dry, tannic and satisfying, our 2015 Porter’s is a blend of apples from both our Palouse-based suppliers (Bishops’ Orchard & Steury Orchards). Aged in a used whiskey barrel (already stripped of whiskey by our award-winning Stonewall cider), this cider pairs beautifully with smoked poultry, pork and red meat dishes. (12 cases bottled still in 750 ml bottles, RS 0.2%)

Cidery Description:  Located in the largest apple-growing region on the continent, Liberty Ciderworks is all about the apple, showcasing the diversity and wonders of locally grown fruit. From well known apples like McIntosh and Jonathan to rare, cider-specific fruit like Kingston Black and Dabinett, Liberty ciders put apples in their proper place: Front and center.  We started Liberty Ciderworks in 2013 with a simple, two-part mission: 1) Using apples from local farms and fields to create unique, wonderful ciders, and 2) Sharing them with friends and neighbors across the great Pacific Northwest.  Welcome to the cider revolution. 

They have a tap room in Spokane WA, which also now has a bottle shop of selections from around the world.

Price:  $15.75
Where Bought:  Capitol Cider in Seattle WA
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  Perusing their cider bottle list.  I was surprised to find this, as I didn’t think the Reserve Series left their tap room.

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First Impression:  Light orange amber hue.  Still (no carbonation).  Smells of bittersweet apple juice, caramel, and tannins.

Tasting Notes:  Dry.  Light bodied.  Low tartness and acidity.  Hints of bitterness.  Moderate tannins.  No sourness or funk.  Notes of bittersweet apple, caramel, brown sugar, orange, and leather.  Long dry tannic finish.  Low to moderate flavor intensity.  Moderate to high complexity.  Moderate apple flavor.  Low sessionability.

My Opinion:  I enjoyed it.  However, I think I would have liked a bit more body and residual sweetness, as I think that would have brought out more flavor.  However, as-is, it is incredibly food friendly.

Most Similar to:  Eve’s Kingston Black, Farnum Hill Kingston Black, and Alpenfire Ember (which is sweeter)

Closing Notes:  Next up I have their Pink Pearl to try, another Reserve Series single varietal.

Have you tried any single varietal ciders?  What did you think?

Central City Limited Edition Imperial Cider

Review of Central City Brewers and Distillers’ Brewer’s Reserve Small Batch Series Limited Edition Imperial Cider.  It is my first time trying anything from this cidery.  I picked it up in Victoria in September, when we were in port for a cruise.

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Cider:  Limited Edition Imperial Cider
Cidery:  Central City Brewing
Cidery Location:  Surrey, British Columbia, Canada
ABV:  11.0%
How Supplied:  750ml bottles
Style:  Canadian cider from local apples, bourbon barrel aged

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Availability:  limited seasonal release, since fall 2016, only in British Columbia (although in general their products are available throughout Canada; see here)

Cider Description:  Central City Brewers & Distillers’ Oak Aged Craft Cider is a limited edition, small batch apple cider. Made from 100% Okanangan Valley apples, oak aged with subtle bourbon tones. The resulting flavour is complex with notes of vanilla bringing balance to a rich, crisp apple character. The effervescent finish makes for a refreshing and flavourful cider experience.

Cidery Description:  This brewery opened in 2003.  In addition to beer, they also produce spirits and cider.

Price:  $16.44 CAD (~ $13.00 U.S.)
Where Bought:  The Strath in Victoria B.C.
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  Browsing.  I had never heard of this producer, and it sounded like a cider I’d like.

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First Impression:  Medium straw yellow hue.  Still (no carbonation).  Smells of alcohol, oak, and honey.

Tasting Notes:  Semi-dry to semi-sweet.  Light to medium bodied.  Low to moderate tartness.  Moderate acidity.  Low tannins.  Hints of bitterness.  No sourness or funk.  Notes of honey, lemon, bourbon, oak, and caramelized sugar.  Long boozy finish.  Low oak influence, apple flavor, and sessionability.  Moderate bourbon flavor, flavor intensity, and complexity.

My Opinion:  Awesome!  I loved the flavor profile of this cider.  It was quite alcoholic, but well balanced and tasty.  The bourbon was definitely noticeable, which I liked, but not overwhelming.  I shared it with a friend on Christmas day, and it was a great choice.  The high quality surprised me, as I haven’t enjoyed too many ciders from breweries.  Often they are rather beer-like.

Most Similar to:  (1) Moonlight Meadery Little Apples (the new canned version like this, but without the first batch can liner issue; it remains much drier than their previous draft version); (2) Eden Specialty Ciders Cellar Series Guinevere’s Pearls (except it lacks bourbon); and (3) 2 Towns Bad Apple (except it also lacks bourbon)

Closing Notes:  I hope to be able to find this again.  It was an awesome value too!

Have you tried Central City’s Imperial Cider?  What did you think?

Leavenworth Cider Tasting

My husband and I recently spend a few days in Leavenworth WA, a Bavarian-themed town in the mountains a couple hours East of Seattle.  Visiting this time of year is especially special as they light up and decorate the entire town.  This time we visited mid-week, skipping the weekend festival crowds, which we concluded was a great decision (plus it is nearly impossible to get a hotel room there on a festival weekend as they allow folks to re-book for the next year).  I found cider at nearly every place we went to, and didn’t spot Angry Orchard on a single tap list!  Very cool.

At least three new cider-centric places opened in Leavenworth since our last visit:

  • Bushel & Bee – a tap room with about 12 beers, 9 ciders, and 3 meads on draft, who offers flights, snacks, and two fridge cases of bottles & cans
  • Broken Barrel – a combination bottle shop & tap room which focuses on wine & cider and offers classes
  • Stein – a huge tap room (over 50 taps, where probably 8 were cider) with tons of seating, full food menu, two fridge cases of bottles & cans, and a mini gift shop in the front

Here is what I tried:

  • At Bushel & Bee I had Swift‘s Peach Oak on draft.
    • reviewed below
  • At Icicle Brewing I had a can of Rambling Route Yakima Cider (they have 1 rotating cider option).  This is a really cool local brewery for beer lovers, with a neat tap room sharing the space with their production facility, and snacks & games.  Plus their beer prices are crazy affordable, especially growler fills.  My husband took home a bunch of his favorite ‘Dark Persuasion’ german chocolate cake porter.
    • previous review of Rambling Route here
  • At Broken Barrel I picked up a couple fancy bottles to take home.
    • Phillipi Fruit‘s Snowdance, a Pommeau-style apple brandy fortified cider made in Wenatchee.  I tried it previously (see here) but haven’t seen it in any other shops.
    • Cashmere Cider Mill‘s Country Elegance Heirloom Blend Medium cider, made in Cashmere.  I had never heard of this cidery, probably as it looks like they are only sold at their tasting room and a couple shops.
  • At Leavenworth Sausage Garden I had Seattle Cider Semi-Sweet on draft (which has been their 1 cider selection since they opened).
    • previous review here
  • At Munchen Haus I had Whiskey Barrel Cider‘s Dam Hard Cider on draft (they have 1 rotating cider tap), my first time trying cider from that cidery.
    • reviewed below
  • At Stein we took a look at the tap list and thought we’d have time to come back later, but didn’t.  However, like Broken Barrel, I had previously tried everything on their tap list, so it wasn’t too much of a loss.
  • At a roadside shop East of Leavenworth I picked up a bottle of mead from Honeywood Winery (in Salem Oregon) – see my previous review of their cider here
    • I opened the bottle the day after we got home and really enjoyed it.  Very sweet (more of a dessert mead), but very flavorful and complex, with a lot of honey and floral notes.  Also an awesome value at $13.50 / 750ml of 11% ABV.

Swift Cider Peach Oak

Swift‘s Peach Oak is a seasonal draft-only cider, 6.9% ABV, made in Portland Oregon.  I paid about $7 for 12oz on draft at Bushel & Bee.  They have a really cool tap room by the way – cozy, with fun decor (and even some games & adult coloring books).  There was a wide range of ciders, from dry to sweet, although I think they were all the flavored type you most commonly see on draft (not from cider apples).

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Light peach yellow hue.  Nearly still.  Smells mildly fruity and acidic.  On the drier side of semi-dry.  Light bodied.  Moderate tartness and acidity.  Low bitterness.  Hints of tannins.  No sourness or funk.  Notes of peach, green apple, pineapple, and a hint of oak.  Moderate length tart finish.  Low apple flavor.  Low flavor intensity.  Low to moderate complexity.  Moderate to high sessionability.

I thought this was average, but only as it is not my preferred style.  This would appeal more to fans of dry & acidic subtle flavored cider.  I personally prefer a slightly sweeter and/or more intensely flavored cider.  This is on-par with what I have come to expect from Swift, having tried their Pineapple Hop and Marionberry.

Whiskey Barrel Cider Company Dam Fine Cider

Whiskey Barrel Cider Co.’s Dam Fine Cider is their flagship offering, 5.8% ABV, made in Pullman WA.  I paid about $6 for about a pint on draft at Muchen Haus, an outdoor sausage garden.  Thankfully they had a fire pit as it was in the 30s when we visited.  We stopped by for a drink before dinner just so I could try this cider (plus they had one of my husband’s favorite beers, Icicle’s Dark Persuasion).  This was the only cider they had, and apparently the selection rotates.

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Light straw yellow hue with a hint of orange/pink.  Low carbonation.  Smells mild, of apple juice.  On the drier side of semi-sweet.  Light to medium bodied.  Low tartness.  Low to moderate acidity.  No bitterness, sourness, or funk.  Notes of apple juice and honey with the very slightest hint of oak.  Quick finish.  Moderate to high apple flavor.  Moderate flavor intensity.  Low complexity.  High sessionability.

I enjoyed this, and it ended up being my favorite cider I drank during our visit (except for the bottle of Newton’s Court Gasping Goose I had in our room).  If I’m drinking cider from dessert instead of cider apples, I like something with more flavor than Rambling Route and Seattle Cider for example.  However, it left me wanting more whiskey & oak flavor, as it was nearly non-existent, which was surprising considering the cidery’s name.

Do you enjoy trying new ciders on vacation?

Eden Specialty Ciders Cellar Series #2 The Falstaff

Review of Eden Specialty Ciders Cellar Series #2, The Falstaff, a seven-year barrel-aged ice cider!  It is my first time trying this, although I’ve tried Eden’s Sparkling DryCinderella’s SlipperHeirloom Ice CiderSparkling Semi-DryNorthern Spy Ice CiderHoneycrisp Ice CiderImperial 11 RoséHeirloom Brandy Barrel Aged Ice CiderGuinevere’s PearlsWindfall Orchard Ice Cider, and Two Ellies (collaboration with Tilted Shed).

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>>This is a review of a sample bottle provided to Cider Says by Eden.  Although I will take care to treat it the same as any other review, there is always the potential for bias as I received it for free.  The only consideration I knowingly made was pushing this up in my cider review cue.  I love free stuff, especially cider!  Want your cider or cider-related product reviewed here?  Contact me.<<

Cider:  Cellar Series #2, The Falstaff
Cidery:  Eden Specialty Ciders
Cidery Location:  Newport Vermont
ABV:  10%
Residual Sugar: 15%
How Supplied:  375ml bottles
Style:  American artisan ice cider from Vermont apples, aged for 7 years in a single oak barrel

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Availability:  Now sold out.  This was an early batch of their ice cider, aged in a single oak barrel from 2008-2015, put into 600 bottles, and sold to their cider club members in 2015 & 2016.

However, in general, their ciders are at least sold in AK, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, IL, MA, MD, ME, MI, NC, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OR, SC, VT, WA, and British Columbia.  Eden also offers online sales when allowed by state.

Cider Description:  Rare single-barrel ice cider aged for 7 years in used French oak. It is elegantly oxidized and sweet, like a rich oloroso without fortification. Dark and warm, it still has beautiful acidity, along with notes of golden raisin, caramelized sugar, apricot and fig.

won Chairman’s Award / Best Wood-Aged Cider: Dan Berger Cider Competition 2016

Cidery Description:  Eden Orchards and Eden Ice Cider began on a trip to Montreal in 2006 when we first tasted ice cider and wondered why nobody was making it on our side of the border.  We had dreamed for years of working together on a farm in the Northeast Kingdom; it was a dream that had vague outlines including an apple orchard, cider, and fermentation of some sort.  That night we looked at each other and knew ice cider was it.  In April 2007, we bought an abandoned dairy farm in West Charleston, Vermont and got to work.  Since then we have planted over 1,000 apple trees, created 5 vintages of Eden Vermont Ice Ciders, and have introduced a new line of Orleans Apertif Ciders.  Out goals are to create healthy soils and trees in our own orchard, to support out Vermont apple orchard partners who do the same, to minimize our carbon footprint, to contribute to the economic and environmental health of our employees and our Northeast Kingdom community, and most of all to make world-class unique ciders that truly reflect our Vermont terroir.

They have a tasting bar on the main floor of the Northeast Kingdom Tasting Center in downtown Newport Vermont.  Their current product line includes ice ciders, Aperitif ciders, sparkling ciders, and Cellar Series releases.

Price:  n/a (retails for $50)
Where Bought:  n/a
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  I read about this online, but it was cider club only, then sold out.  I got lucky and a rep from Eden saw it on my Wish List and contacted me.

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First Impression:  Deep caramel amber hue.  Still (no carbonation).  Smells amazing and enticing – very rich, sweet, and boozy, of concentrated apple juice, molasses, and so much more.

Tasting Notes:  Sweet.  Full bodied.  Moderate tartness and acidity.  Low tannins.  No bitterness, sourness, or funk.  Notes of molasses, caramel, raisin, ripe baked apple, tart raw green apple, lemon, brown sugar, caramelized sugar, pie spices, and even more!  Long finish length.  High apple flavor and flavor intensity.  Very high complexity.  Very low sessionability.  More aged than oaky.

My Opinion:  Amazing!!  Probably tied with Alpenfire Smoke for most complex cider I’ve ever drank.  The tartness and acidity was higher than their other ice ciders, but that helped balance the sweetness, and added to the flavor complexity.  It was a unique mix of rich, sweet, tart, savory, and more.  I recommend serving this an ounce or two at a time, very cold, and to slowly savor in tiny sips.

Most Similar to:  This is a more complex, tart & acidic, and aged version of their other ice ciders, probably closest to Eden’s Brandy Barrel Aged Heirloom ice cider (which was my favorite ice cider until I tried this one).

Closing Notes:  I’m so lucky to have been able to try this!  I look forward to enjoying the rest of this bottle over the next couple weeks, including on Thanksgiving.  Hopefully I won’t have to share it with anyone.

Have you tried any ice cider from Eden?  What did you think?