Monday, March 28, 2022

Cider Review: Artifact Cider Project's Wild Thing

From my writing desk window, I have seen blue skies and a wild winter storm chase each other around today. That’s what Spring can do sometimes. Change is here and more change is coming soon after. Sometimes it's invigorating, and other times it just leaves us feeling confused and unprepared. I’ll use it as a message to rest when I need it rather than attempt to keep up. Perhaps that will resonate with a few of my cider friends as well. This weekend I chose to take a break from cooking on Saturday night and try a new takeout restaurant in town along with a new cider. 
I chose Artifact Cider’s Wild Thing. I picked this cider up when traveling a few months ago, and I’ve been waiting for just the right mood to try a single-varietal McIntosh cider. Artifact Cider was founded in Massachussetts in 2014 by Soham Bhatt and Jake Mazar.
I like what the website says about Artifact Cider, so I’ll let the cidery represent itself. 
Artifact Cider Project makes cider for the new Northeast. We produce craft cider in a variety of styles by respecting tradition, but refusing to let it limit us. Using local apples and innovative cidermaking practices, we create ciders that are as authentic, eclectic, and forward-looking as the region they come from.
You can visit Artifact Cider online here and learn more:
Here’s how Artifact  introduces Wild Thing on the website. Unusual but still clear!
          WILD THING
crisp and aromatic
100% McIntosh
Sweetness ++  
Acidity ++++
Structure +   
vibe: dare over truth
I’m even more curious to try Wild Thing after these quixotic notes. I truly don’t know what to expect aside from plenty of acidity.

Appearance: brilliant, medium hue intensity, no visible bubbles, cool straw
The color is a bit more cool in hue than many of the generally straw-colored ciders I see. It’s medium in intensity and totally brilliant. I don’t see any bubbles 
Aromas: rain, minerals, petrol, grassy, fresh apples
The Wild Thing cider smells like rain, minerals, and petrol. There are other notes too though. The cider offers up grassy and appley notes like fresh wet apples.
Sweetness/Dryness: Semi-dry/semi-sweet
My co-taster and I disagreed on the level of sweetness. They said semi-dry, but to me it tasted more semi-sweet. It was certainly a sweeter finish than I expected from the cider’s aromas.
Flavors and drinking experience: Petillant, medium body, high acid, peach and lemon

Wild Thing strikes me as fruity and easygoing more than feral. It’s a fun and approachable cider.
It tastes like sugared lemons, fresh peaches, and powdered sugar, balanced out with a high acid kick. I detected some very mild tannins, but they were there. The Wild Thing brings Medium body and some nice fullness. It’s not a simplistic cider, but it is very apple-centric. I can get some of the same fresh apple notes from the aromas in the flavor.
I’m not terribly surprised that the cider feels petillant on my tongue. I didn’t see any bubbles at all; that’s not a hard rule, but one can often get a hint about sparkle before the first sip.
I think Wild Thing would make a great first introduction to the Artifact Cider Project as a brand. It was a delightful pairing with our takeout. The bitterness of the homemade hummus was smoothed out by the fresh and fruity approach of the cider. The Tall One’s order of Artichokes and Mushrooms was lemony and scented with cinnamon; a dish that complex needs a cider that will support and augment the experience. This one does its job beautifully!