Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Cider Review: Wolffer Cider's No. 139 Dry Rosé Cider

Spring does not last; I suppose that's the one thing we can count on about it. Perhaps it arrives early, or like this year seems to tease and disappear. But before we've had our fill, spring is over. Not that I'm going to complain about summer already. Oh no, not me. There are special pleasures unique to these early weeks of warmth, 
and rosé is one of them.

To continue with my ciders enjoyed at Gramercy Tavern, today I'm reviewing Wolffer Cider's No. 139 Dry Rosé Cider. This summery beverage made quite the impression, from its visually stunning label, to its interesting inclusion of grape skin extract, as well as its aromas and flavors. There's a lot to say, so I'll get to it.

This is my first review of a Wolffer Cider . To find out about Wolffer Cider, part of Wolffer Estate Vineyard on Long Island, you can read about the ciders and the vineyard here:

Here's how they introduce it, "Made from a selection of Apples grown by the Halseys of White Cap Farm in Bridgehampton, the Wölffer No. 139 Dry White and Dry Rosé Ciders make a spirited and unique entrance into the hard cider market.Through a carefully selective taste test, the blend of apples was chosen so that each variety could contribute its distinctive character."

"While the Dry Rosé is clear with a shiny, pale rose color and also has hints of honeysuckle and fine yeast aromas but with the additional hint of strawberries."

Appearance: brilliant, deep warm bronze, very obviously bubbly

The dry rosé wowed me with its bronze red copper color. I wish my photo could capture it better. The cider poured with a quickly fading head. Brilliant. Lovely. The cider gets its color from extract of grape skins.

Aromas: red fruit, apricots, malic acid

Oooh, I can smell intense fruit notes, but its not overpowering. The cider offers up dense notes of ripe grapes and tart apricots. Somehow the impression I get is of fruit bursting, but that might not make any sense. I get a bit of dusty mineral smell. I'm guessing this will feel high in malic acid.

Sweetness/dryness: semi-dry

Wolffer's rosé cider tastes more like a semi-dry to me than a true dry. Acidity tends to enhance dryness or at least alter the mouth coating elements of a sweet cider, but I'll still stand by my perception of this as a fruity semi-dry.

Flavors and drinking experience: good bubble, rich, bready, high acid, balanced,

This texture pleases me in that it is nicely sparkling. They seem force carbonated rather than bottle conditioned. The bubbles compliment the cider's bright acidity. There's a tiny bit of initial breadiness, but it gives way to fruit. Speaking of this cider's fruit notes, they taste deep and rich with little sparks of dark sourness. This is not a heavy beverage, more like a fruit salad with purple grapes and fresh Granny Smith apples.

The alcohol does not present very strongly at its 6.9% ABV. One of my favorite things about drinking this is the luscious mouth coat balanced by acid. I find it exceedingly drinkable and balanced. No tannins to speak of. The most distinct apple not arrives at the finish.

As the bottle seems to hint without offering; this is a lovely summer fling. Treat it like rosé wine and enjoy it with brunch, gossip, or a good view.