Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Cider Review: Farmhaus Cider Co.'s Trocken Dry and Washington Cider Week!

Labor day has come and gone. I’ve been to Black Diamond’s orchard for the first time to walk through with Ian Merwin and pick up my apple and cider CSA. It’s a grand time of year, even in the bizarre pandemic life we’re trying to create. I’ll even give a silver lining, because so many cider week events have had to move online, it’s easier than ever before to take part in a cider week further afield. I never want to travel much during the local apple harvest time here; it’s simply too nice to miss. That means not seeing other harvest places and celebrations, until now!  

This year, I can join Washington Cider Week without having to fly across the country, and I’m grateful for that. 

There are still some things I cannot do, like enjoy a cider and pairing meal of Taiwanese food from BB6: 

Amazingly, there’s so much more I can do, including tour cideries and orchards and taste along with cider makers. The event I’m most excited about is the Washington Fine Cider Virtual Tasting with Dragon’s Head, Libery and Alpenfire. It will be a live tasting of 3 amazing ciders  Alpenfire Cider’s Glow; Dragon’s Head Cider’s Heritage; and Liberty Ciderworks’ Major Hewes with all the cider makers plus Cidercraft’s Erin James will be moderating.

Here’s the link if you want to find out more and join us!

You can read about all the events and cider makers at the Washington Cider Week website:

Now for my review of Farmhaus Cider Co.'s Trocken Dry! The kind folks at Farmhaus Cider Co. shared a few ciders with me, and this is the last of them. 

I have three earlier reviews of Farmhaus Ciders.



Sweater Weather:

Find out all about this Michigan family-farm company on the website:

So, what does Farmaus Cider say about the Trocken Dry? Here’s the introduction to it from the website.

Tart. Crisp. Unfiltered.

A delicious hard cider made with all local Michigan ingredients. This cider is fermented completely dry, giving it a crisp, tart taste consistent with a German Apfelwein, or some even say a sour craft beer. This cider pairs well with savory meats, strong cheeses and anything with spice. 6.9% ABV.

Appearance: Brilliant, moonglow, few bubbles

I was surprised to find the Trocken Dry rather brilliant for being unfiltered. Even with it’s clarity, something about this cider just looks thick. The Trocken Dry has a lovely pale moonglow color.

Aromas: sweet, overripe apples, cream, pastry

The Trocken Dry smells sweet like overripe apples. The concentration of apple aroma goes past juicy into nearly syrup territory. There are some notes that remind me of pastry and powdered sugar, but the whole experience is very appley though—that's the immediate smell. But I think my favorite surprise is how the aromas include just a hint of heavy cream. 

Dryness/sweetness: Semi-dry

To me, this cider tastes semi-dry but not actually dry. It’s fruity and natural in its sweetness, but it's not a dry cider.

Flavors and drinking experience: Medium high acidity, green apple, citrus, pleasantly drinkable 

The Trocken Dry offers up medium high acidity; again it’s quite appley: I’ll even go so far as t specifiy a certain tart green apple flavor. This is a relatively straightforward cider with a nice blend of fruit notes that include cherry and citrus as well as apple. The cider tastes pleasant and drinkable. The Trocken doesn’t rely on tannins for structure, that comes from the acidity and the sparkle. There’s much more acid in the flavor than the smell.

Another note in addition to the Granny Smith apple and tart cherries is almost a balsamic note—a good and intriguging one. I read an interesting dialogue between sweet rich smell and tartness.   The Trocken Dry has a thick mouthfeel.The fruit intensity is a bit like an apple syrup. Indeed, the cider drinks like a german apfelwein, a bit reminiscent of Charles Dodge's cider. It’s especially nice in big sips. I appreciate the cider’s clean fermentation.  

Ideally, I’d love to serve this with veggie tacos. The spice of chipotle roasted sweet potato, the warmth and substance of black beans, sweet onion and corn, a sharp cheddar, and some crunchy cabbage slaw would show off the tasteful simplicity of this cider beautifully.