Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Cider Review: Vermont Cider Co.'s Addison

I got an exciting package in the mail recently from Vermont Cider Company; they are a n
ew cider brand releasing two ciders only in the northeastern United States (at least for the moment). This is a new brand put out by the owners of Woodchuck and Wyders, but it appears to be aiming for a different style and segment.

Vermont Cider Co. appears to be more active on social media than on a self-owned website. This is certainly the direction of much of the internet these days, so feel free to check these folks out on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/VermontCiderCo/), Twitter(https://twitter.com/VermontCiderCo), and Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/vermontciderco/?hl=en).

This is how Vermont Cider Co. introduces themselves on Facebook:
Crafted here in the Napa Valley of cider, we are pleased to introduce Vermont Cider Co., a cider brand that stands for everything we love about our home state – beautiful mountains, clean lakes, friendly people, and what we believe to be the best apples in the world. Enjoy our traditional ciders, crafted using only fresh pressed juice from Vermont and other Northern apple growing states.
Today I'm reviewing their first flagship cider, Addison. I found a few snippets of information about it, plenty to help set my own expectations for the beverage. Here's an introduction of sorts from the press release,"Named for Addison County, where it is produced, Addison is crafted from 100 percent fresh pressed juice sourced only from Vermont and Northeastern orchards."

Other facts from material about Addison include that it is a semi-dry cider, fermented slowly at relatively low temperatures, and it does not contain added sugar.

I asked for more information about the apple varieties that go into the Addison, and this is what I found out, "The juice is a combination of standard VT apple varieties including McIntosh, Cortland, Liberty, Paula Red, and Empire." These are United States dessert varietals many of which were grown at Sunrise Orchards, one of the places I stayed on my recent Cider Tour of Vermont.

Back in August, I documented all of that day's adventures in this post: https://alongcameacider.blogspot.com/2016/08/the-great-vermont-cider-tour-day-2.html 

But now, for the cider itself.

Appearance: Bright gold, brilliant a few visible tiny bubbles

I can see some intense color, especially for cider from dessert fruit. There are plenty of tiny visible bubbles. It goes almost without saying that the cider is brilliant. It just shines.

Aromas: cooked fruit, pastry, stone, and dust, 

In addition to the cooked apples, dusty and pastry, I also smell some light notes of tropical fruit. These notes make the cider immediately appealing. Behind these more obvious smells, I can detect some more subtle notes of lemonade and shaved metal. Interesting!

Flavors and drinking experience: clean, caramel, tart, some tannins, and echoes of funk 

The first notes are a tiny bit astringent with a ghost of funk that quickly disappears. There are some good tannins, but I notice more zippy acidity. This cider offers up a clean finish with nice caramel and brown sugar as the last note s(and good ones to end on). Little sips bring out acidity more. I found the cider to have a subtle warming effect. The fruit notes I get are pineapple, lemon, and orange.

Generally, I'd say this cider exhibits a ripeness that so much cider can lack. Relatedly, the acidity doesn't taste green. The Addison is tremendously balanced and it tastes somehow golden. This mouthfeel reflects light carbonation; it's enough to have the feel linger as long as the taste. It isn't light and disappearing; there's body here.

Let's pair this cider. I had it with: curried butternut soup followed by homemade applesauce bread and cheddar cheese when I reviewed it. That was lovely. It went well the the gentle curry spice, the creaminess of coconut milk, and all the savoury and sweet notes that butternut brings to everything. I also paired this cider with feeding dear friends and talking about how we can work to make the world a kinder place. Most ciders go with that.

And don't forget #pickcider for Thanksgiving! Read about my picks here: https://alongcameacider.blogspot.com/2016/11/pick-cider-for-thanksgiving-and-my.html

And if you're in the Ithaca area, we're doing #ciderMonday on 11/28! https://www.facebook.com/events/251802365234260/