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Wine Guy: Cider continues to blossom

Time:2018-04-14 18:26wine - Red wine life health Click:

Wine cider Continues Blossom

Local craft cider continues to find its way into my tasting glass, and there are a couple of good reasons.

First, the selection of quality cider persistently proliferates throughout the province. Further, cider is my better half’s preferred potable (I’ll let readers infer which factor gets precedence!). Thus it is only natural to chronicle cider’s continued blossoming, as evidence check out this week’s three bottles.

Wine Guy: Cider continues to blossom

Tod Creek Craft Cider Bamfield Bound, British Columbia ($8.10 for 500mL, available at select private liquor stores)

One of the island’s newer cideries, Victoria’s Tod Creek Craft Cider (named after the creek running through the orchard) was a working dairy farm during the 1950s-1970s. Today, it’s home to thousands of cider apple trees and a renovated barn turned cidery. Bamfield Bound is their small batch, long fermented all-juice cider (meaning there is no concentrates or water dilution) hit with a kiss of Canadian Maple Syrup. The addition rounds out the Granny Smith apple tartness but by no means makes it sweet, this cider is still crisp and refreshing. Tod Creek recommends pairing with “freshly-caught seafood,” which is a great suggestion.

Bottom line: B+, Session cider

Wine Guy: Cider continues to blossom

The BX Press Cidery & Orchard The Bandit Cider with Cherries, British Columbia (from $7 for 500mL, available at select private liquor stores)

Another cidery proud to be producing full-juice ciders, Vernon’s BX Press bills itself as a “branch-to-bottle operation,” meaning they grow apples, press, ferment, mature, and bottle ciders themselves on their estate (the “BX” references the historical Barnard’s Express & Stage Line area of the North Okanagan, and well the “Press” is pretty self-explanatory). In The Bandit’s case this means blending more than 12 different apples with B.C. cherry juice, the result being a seductive ruby-hued cider with a touch of sweetness rounding out the tangy apple bite. It’s great sipped solo, and also pairs well with roast chicken or turkey.

Bottom line: A-, Elegantly rich

Wine Guy: Cider continues to blossom

Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse Ginger Perry, British Columbia (from $18 for 750mL, available at select private liquor stores)

Does fermented pear juice squeeze into a cider discussion? An exception can certainly be made when it’s the tasty Ginger Perry from the Saanich Peninsula’s Sea Cider. Part of the well-regarded farm and ciderhouse’s “Barrel Series,” it is actually made from a combination of B.C. grown apples and pears; the fermented juice is subsequently infused with ginger and juniper berries before getting aged in old American oak barrels bequeathed by a local gin distillery. The result in the glass is a golden-hued, zippy pear and spice tipple that finishes off-dry but crisp.

Bottom line: A-, Punchy Perry

The Swirl: Chef Meets B.C. Grape

The Wines of British Columbia’s annual spring tasting returns to Vancouver on April 26. B.C. wine and food will be celebrated through 90 local wineries (pouring more than 350 wines) and small plates prepared by top chefs from 18 local restaurants from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the JW Marriott Parq Vancouver (39 Smithe Street, Vancouver). Participants in this walk-around tasting are encouraged to vote for their favourite pairings, alongside celebrity judges. Tickets are $90, for complete details head to winebc.com/events/chefmeetsbcgrape.

Contact James: @hadaglass

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