Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Don't be an outcider part 4: Blue Mountain Cherry

Fall. Harvest time. The air is dry and crisp, and everywhere I go I hear the sound of dry leaves crunching underneath my feet. Despite being the harbinger of winter, fall is my favorite season. It is the only time of year where I feel a nostalgic twinge for my days growing up on the east coast. I think about the brilliant colors of the maple trees, wagon rides, scarecrows, powered sugar donuts, and, of course, apple cider.

I did go with friends this year to pick apples. We pressed 10 gallons of juice. I had never had fresh, unpasteurized apple cider. If you get a chance to try it I highly recommend the experience. Most of that 10 gallons was put up to ferment and make lovely hard cider wonderfulness. Yes, I get gushy about hard cider. I think that if I were to ever move away from the Pacific Northwest my fall nostalgia will include this awesome beverage.

We gleaned another fruit as well - Italian Prunes - and set ourselves down for an evening to pit them for plum wine. Of course, I feel that making alcohol requires drinking it, so I picked up a bottle of Blue Mountain Cherry Cider while buying yeast at the brew store.

I do not think this cider could taste any more like cherries. Each sip was packed with tart, full, cherry flavor and just a hint of apple lingering in the finish. The nose was also ripe with cherries and champagne undertones. As the cider warmed the flavors went from pie cherry tart, to newly ripened rainier, and on into juicy bing. Not sure what cherries were in my bottle, but it was fun to experience the flavors open up over time. I drank this cider alone, and because I did not want to mess with the flavors, it kept me from sampling the plums. That said, I would most definitely pair this up with chocolate desserts, or even turn it into a fancy ice cream float.


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