Monday, May 29, 2023

Perry Review: Snow Capped Cider's Winter Pear

The weather is beautiful outside such that staying indoors to write isn’t the easiest thing this morning. My garden is growing, though I certainly lost some tomato plants to the recent overnight freeze. I did have the good luck to open up Snow Capped Cider’s Winter Pear over the weekend, so I’m reviewing a perry. 

Snow Capped Cider comes to us from a high elevation family orchard in Colorado. I’ve reviewed a few ciders from Snow Capped Ciders. I’ll link all of my reviews below; in them there’s more background on this fascinating cidery.


Jala-pear-no Cider:

Ashmead’s Kernel:

Blanc Mollet:

Gold Rush:

Harrison Reserve (My #5 favorite cider of 2021):

Snow Capped Cider’s website has plenty of info on the latest releases and awards for the cidery:

Here’s what the folks at Snow Capped Cider have to say about the Winter Pear.

Fruit growers are patient and we know how to handle late season fruit. This special cider begins by handpicking our 70-year-old Colorado pear trees. Winter pears require 3-5 weeks of cold storage to adequately ripen. After ripending, juicing and fermentation the blend is returned to cold storage for aging. The journey ends with  bold carbonation to complement woodsy notes of vanilla and winter spice flowing on delicate pear sweetness to a crisp, sparkling finish. ABV: 6.3% 

The pears used are: European D’anjou, Bosc, Comice, and Winter Pears.

Appearance: mild peach, brilliant, fine visible bubbles

This perry has such a delicate mild peach color; it reminds me of the petals on a Peace rose. My grandma had one in her backyard and treasured each sunrise bloom. The Winter Pear is completely brilliant with a miniature parade of fine bubbles rising in the glass. Beautiful.

Aromas: vanilla, yeast, ripe pear and apple, dessert

The Winter Pear smells like vanilla, clean yeasty bread, ripe apples and pears. The yeast, stone fruit, and honey notes combine to give an aura of dessert. Everything about these smells just makes me think of sunshine and happy surprises.

Sweetness/dryness: Sweet!

This perry is sweet! Perries made with culinary pears are often sweet because of pears’ Sorbitol: an unfermentable natural sugar. This tastes very naturally sweet with loads of fruitiness, but I might suspect an arrested fermentation rather than just residual Sorbitol.

Flavors and drinking experience: thick mouthfeel, homemade applesauce, fine bubbles ripe pear

The Winter Pear is simultaneously playful and sophisticated with its fresh juicy sweetness and crisp light bubbles. The flavors remind me of super ripe pears eaten over a sink to deal with extreme juiciness, but also homemade applesauce. 

I also get the notes of vanilla and custard that were hinted in the perry’s aroma. One of my co-tasters noted a little fire on the palate. Over and over again, we were all struck by this perry’s fine bubbles and perfumed finish. Each sip invites the next. We enjoyed our perry with a casual al fresco dinner on our porch: roast carrot pasta salad, grilled shrimp, and asparagus. It is the time to make the most of Spring after all.