Gitche Gumee Ciderworks Entropy

Review of Gitche Gumee Ciderworks’ debut release, Entropy.  It is my first time trying any of their cider.

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>>This is a review of a sample bottle provided to Cider Says by Gitche Gumee.  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:  Entropy (2015 vintage)
Cidery:  Gitche Gumee
Cidery Location:  Hancock Michigan
ABV:  6.9%
How Supplied:  750ml corked & caged bottles
Style:  American craft “feral” cider from local wild apples, spontaneously (wild yeast) fermented, barrel aged, bottle conditioned

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Availability:  limited to Northwest Michigan, released August 2017

Cider Description:  We hand press wild, feral apples grown in the stunning Copper Country of Upper Michigan.  Long winters, fresh air, and beautiful summer days conspire to grow large crops of wild apples.  No shortcuts!  These small tart apples are hand-picked by our community, providing opportunities for local groups to forage our forests.  The juice is spontaneously fermented using the wild yeast naturally present on the apple.  No added yeast, water, sugar, sulfites, preservatives, or flavorings.  After a cold fermentation, it is cellar-aged 9 months in small French white oak barrels. The outcome is a delicious, dry, funky and naturally gluten free cider done in a time-honored tradition.  We’re making cider the hard way!

Cidery Description:  Hancock Michigan’s first Hard Cidery. We pride ourselves on producing quality products.

Price:  n/a (retails for $15)
Where Bought:  n/a
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  the cidermaker contacted me (Phillip Kelm)

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First Impression:  Medium straw yellow hue.  Very low carbonation.  Smells of funk, sourness, citrus, and must.

Tasting Notes:  Dry.  Light bodied.  Low tartness.  Moderate acidity.  Low bitterness and tannins.  Moderate funk.  Low sourness.  Notes of lemon, grapefruit, must, oak, honey, herbs, and vinegar.  Moderate length sharp finish.  Low to moderate apple flavor.  Moderate flavor intensity, complexity, and sourness.  Low barrel influence.

My Opinion:  Regular readers of my blog will know this isn’t my favorite type of cider.  Everyone doesn’t like every cider.  However, I can say that this is well-made, and an excellent value.  I’d recommend this for fans of dry farmhouse-style ciders.  It is less acidic & sour than some similar ciders I’ve tried, which is likely more friendly to folks not familiar with this style.  There was some nice complexity and flavor.

Most Similar to:  Alpenfire Pirate’s PlankBrooklyn Cider House Half SourNumber 12 Sparkling DryRuncible Cider Light of the MoonAngry Orchard Walden Hollow, and Sietsema Traditional Dry

Side Note:  Something was off with the cork.  I am used to the button top ones with champagne bottles, and this one seemed like a straight cork which was pushed in too far.  Just one of those first release hiccups.  It was all good though, as my husband got it open with a corkscrew and some muscle, and didn’t even get any chunks of cork in the cider!

Closing Notes:  I’m glad I got a chance to try this cider (and was actually among the first, as it is a brand new release).  It’ll be fun to see what they come up with next.

Have you tried Gitchee Gumee cider?  What did you think?