Sunday, May 14, 2023

Cider Review: Stormalong Cider's Berry Perry

I certainly cannot say that I’m settling into any sort of routine. May is a whirlwind,  but it’s wonderful. I go from judging cider to celebrating to covering all the tender bedding plants with sheets to protect from the last few frosts of the year. If a single plan changes (and some always do), then I must play Tetris with the week to fit it all in. Surely, I’m not the only one. What’s fun though is bringing cider to many of my plans and sharing it with friends and family. Recently, I got to share Stormalong Cider’s Berry Perry with a co-taster who is occasionally a bit reluctant to try perries. 

It was Stormalong’s excellent reputation that encouraged this big of adventurousness! This Massachusetts Cider often does really fun and tasty things. Stormalong ciders often make their way to me, and I’m always glad to review them. Here’s the full list. You can find lots more background info on Stormalong in the ealier entries!

IPC Collaboration with Exhibit A Brewing:

Pearman Quince(my #10 cider of last year):


White Mountain Magic:

Bittersweet Symphonie:

Wicked Little Wickson:


Happy Holidays:

Esopus Spitzenburg:

Ashmead’s Kernel:


Legendary Dry:

Kingston Black:

Light of the Sun:

Mass Appeal:

Boston Heirloom:

Here's how Stormalong describes it, "Berry Perry is a fruit bursting collaboration of Bosc Pears, Raspberries, Blueberries and a hint of Hibiscus. It is slightly sweet, slightly tart and 100% refreshing taste bud tantalizing experience. Alcohol 6.80%"

Online you can find out about Stormalong’s current releases and full lineup:

Appearance: tawny, ochre, brilliant

I don’t see a lot of bubbles in the glass, but the Berry Perry is a wonderfully intense shade of ochre. The perry is also beautifully brilliant.

Aromas: blueberries, pears, and peanuts

What a surprising snack! The perry smells like blueberries, pears, and peanuts, so in the end I’m reminded of a peanut butter and blueberry jelly sandwich. Not a lot of hibiscus.

Sweetness/dryness: Semi-dry

I appreciate the balance of sweet ripe fruit and just enough mellow acid to keep things lively and in check. It comes across as semi-dry to semi-sweet, perhaps just a nudge on the semi-sweet end. 

Flavors and drinking experience: pronounced blueberry and blackberry, ripe pear, rounded, full bodied

I love what a surprise this cider was for me. I expected something with both more intense sweetness and acidity, but instead this feels so much more natural, floral, and true to perry. The perry’s medium acidity is helpful but never pointed or too zingy. Instead it just keeps the full-bodied perry rounded and juicy without being limp. This feels tremendously true to blue berries and pears as neither of them is the racy tart fruit that will pucker your mouth, but rather something gentle and subtly perfumed and fruity.

In terms of flavor, it’s tremendously fruit forward: very pear and very blueberry. I don’t get as much fermentation character as with some perries, but what’s here is totally delicious. I found this perry utterly magical with soft cheese. I recommend pairing this perry with gentle mellow flavors so that its nuances won’t be lost. Even my co-taster was won over!