Forget fine wine, fine cider is here to take its place.
With autumn officially here gone are those summer days. With it, many are looking for next seasonal beverage – and craft cider might just be the answer! With craft cider being the fastest- growing alcohol category, fine cider is increasingly becoming the first choice, which is obviously no surprise to us here are crafty nectar.
Cider has had some bad connotations, since the production of cider in plastic litre bottles, you can’t help but think teenager on a park bench but cider is so much more than that. So why switch?
You might automatically assume cider is closer to beer than wine, but you would be wrong. Cider is made in the same way as wine, “Of course there’s carbonation, sweetener and a lot more finesse to the process than just a bit of yeast and apple juice, depending on what style you’re making.” Henry Jefferys In the same way wine has a large variety of grapes there are also loads of apple varieties, making cider just as complex. Forget fine wine, impress your friends with your knowledge of fine cider because “Good cider is a much greater rarity than good wine” – J.M. Trowbridge, New York, 1890“
Cider goes with everything! Traditionally you might think to pair fine wine and cheese but fine cider goes just as well – if not better! With the vast range of cider styles, it’s easy to understand why you can find a suitable match for whatever you may be eating. Good cider is a perfect balance of, sweetness, bitterness, and acidity. Bringing out hidden flavours in whatever you pair it with – you can’t go wrong.
Apple a Day Keeps the Doctor Away
Cider is made out of apples. Apples are fruit and apples are part of your 5 a day. It also has a range of benefits such as having antioxidants. Research indicates that a half-pint of cider contains the same level of antioxidants as a glass of red wine.
The Art of Making Cider
Cider simply is just juice with added time. Keeving is a key method of cider making, its complexity makes it an art form in itself. Keeving is a means of retaining a natural sweetness in the cider without it fermenting fully dry.” Felix Nash. Keeving is an artisan method for making naturally sweetened cider. Only cider apples are used; no sugar, no water, nothing else.The keeving process involves the formation of a pectin gel, which floats to the top the juice.The gel traps nitrogen and is removed. Starved of its essential nutrients, the wild yeast fermentation stops early, leaving natural sugars from the apples themselves to sweeten the cider.Resulting in a naturally sweet cider this method of cider making really is an art form.
Now Rose is also gluten free – but seeing as you’re looking for an alternative seasonal drink then you’ll be safe in the knowledge that cider is also gluten-free, Beer does offer up some gluten-free varieties but it’s not as natural as craft cider.
Believe it or not, Sparkling Cider came before champagne! It’s true that Englishman Christopher Merret gave a paper to the Royal Society in 1672 outlining how to make wine fizzy. But he wasn’t the first to induce bubbles in a bottle. In the West Country, scientifically inclined gentlemen had been doing it for years — only they used cider, not wine.” sparkling cider is even carbonated in the same way as champagne! So stick with England’s answer to champagne – fine cider. Hugh Stafford’s Treatise of 1753, even described fine ciders as “fit for a gentleman”!
What’s more, with cider you’ll get the best of both worlds, as Cider has all the complexity of wine in the thirst-quenching drinkability of beer. you’re sure to find a cider to suit your tastes – from sweet ciders too dry there’s something for everyone to enjoy.
With cider on par to wine, it makes sense to delve into the cider world and see what it can offer you, Get rid of the perception that cider is to be left in the past with your teenage years and discover the craft that is cider, it’s more than you could ever imagine.
So make the switch from fine wine to fine cider this autumn, you might not go back!