Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Cider Review: Woodchuck's Local Nectar and an Announcement about CiderCon 2017!

I've been hearing about Woodchuck's Local Nectar for a while. This is the cider made from only Vermont apples; its semi-dry and has a higher ABV more in line with 100% juice ciders. I've been curious about this one for a while, so when I spotted it on  grocery store shelf in Vermont a few months ago, I picked one up. Usually Woodchuck kindly sends me little cider care packages, but this one I had to hunt down on my own.

Woodchuck is now celebrating their 25th
 anniversary! For cider in America, that's actually a tremendously long time.

You can read more about the celebration here: http://www.woodchuck.com/blog-post/25th-anniversary-cider-growler-launch

And Ciderstock 2016 is happening: August 20th in Middlebury, Vermont! Check out the music and food lineups here: http://www.woodchuck.com/ciderstock/index.php

I've tasted most everything Woodchuck has released: far too many to list in any one review. But I do want to share a few of my Previous reviews:

Gumption: http://alongcameacider.blogspot.com/2015/07/cider-review-woodchucks-gumption.html

Cellar Series Chocolate: http://alongcameacider.blogspot.com/2014/06/cider-review-woodchuck-cellar-series.html

Hot Cha Cha Cha: http://alongcameacider.blogspot.com/2016/03/cider-review-woodchucks-hot-cha-cha-cha.html

Daychaser: http://alongcameacider.blogspot.com/2016/05/cider-review-woodchucks-day-chaser.html

Barrel Select:http://alongcameacider.blogspot.com/2014/01/cider-review-woodchucks-private-reserve.html

But its time to turn to today's review: Woodchuck's Local Nectar

 Official description:  
"Woodchuck® was born and raised in Vermont and our roots remain firmly entrenched in our home state. This cider was handcrafted using apples solely from our orchard partners in Vermont. It is light and crisp, semi-dry, and a pure reflection of the fantastic apple crop Vermont is known for."

Appearance: butterscotch, brilliant, visible bubbles

The color is more deep than bright. It reminds me of butterscotch candies but made totally brilliant. It is easy to see lots of bubbles in this cider.

Aromas: understated, ripe apples, vinous, dusty 

I don't notice strong aromas from this cider, even when I seek them out. But what's there smells fruity and dusty. In some ways the aromas remind me of a semi-dry riesling.

Sweetness/dryness: semi-sweet

I find this cider semi-sweet, while being extremely well balanced and pleasant.

Flavors and drinking experience: applesauce, fruit esters, juicy, blackberry

Let's start with the obvious. This cider tastes appley Like applesauce but little smokey. Somehow it tastes more natural than some offerings by this brand. I'm also getting some yummy fermented fruit notes and esters. No tannins. Medium acidity. 
Reminds me of the Farmhouse Select Original '91.

 The overall impression comes across as freshly juicy. The sparkle is strong and pleasant. I'd be lying if I said this wasn't easy drinking. The most interesting thing abou tthis cider is its subtly blackberry finish. Both Alex and and I tasted some bubbly fruits of the forest notes consistently.

I had my local nectar with a homemade vegetarian burrito smothered in salsa verde. This was a perfect way to serve and enjoy this cider. The brightness of the salsa paired with the medium acidity and sweetness of the cider and the corn, tofu, tomato, rice filling was a nice offset to such a fruity and balanced cider. 

If I could buy this around here for hot days and mexican food, I totally would.

Last but not least, I am super excited to announce that I will be presenting at Cider Con 2017 in Chicago on Cider Branding and Online Content Marketing with my dear friend Eric West of Cider Guide. This isn't until February, but learning this news made my day today!