Cider: FARNUM HILL CIDER FARMHOUSE CIDER
Maker: Farnum Hill Cider & Poverty Lane Orchards Origin: Lebanon, New Hampshire
Bottle: 750 ml, mushroom cork, wire hood
Cider Maker: Nicole LeGrand Leibon.
CiDER MAKERS NOTES:
Our lightest, most casual cider, pale gold and bubbly, with a stroke of sweetness along with the tart, bitter, and fruity elements that good cider offers. Citrus, pineapple, bittersweet apple, and a trace of the barn. Farmhouse astringency is nowhere near the extreme, but shows a certain tannic edge. Agreeably versatile, sharing certain flavor elements with both beer and wine. A clean, appetizing finish makes it congenial with many kinds of food, from the snackiest to the whole-grainiest and back.
‘Farmhouse’ is more of a pub cider than our others. It varies a bit more from batch to batch, shows less complexity less alcohol than our others, and of course is less filling than beer. It and Semi-Dry are the most popular of our regular ciders. ‘Farmhouse’ is blended from a group of real cider apples that ripen earlier than most. So it’s a bit easier to make and less expensive to buy.
Visit the website to read more about Farnum Hill ‘Farmhouse’
Our Tasting Notes: compiled over several tastings.
In The Glass: Clear, radiant shine. Glowing golden.
First Pour: Slight froth that immediately settles in to a light mousse ring with miniscule bubbles. Distinct legs.
Aroma: Green apple, warm sugar, apple peel, fresh green grass. Black pepper, grapefruit, rooty and a bit barky. Cidery, hint of quinine, ripe apple, powdered sugar, leather.
Swirl: Wood/oak – but not vanilla – slight tropical and dried fruit notes, pleasantly herbal, more quinine and grapefruit.
Taste: Fresh, bitter, tannic, and cidery. BSA. Extremely subtle sweetness. Rustic, nicely rough.
Finish: Long, slow, relatively gently tannins, soft powdery, slight citrus note. Bitter lingers, tapers off, and tannins slowly re-appear. Well balanced. Slightly drying and a bit warming.
2 tasters- (2) different Taste Ratings:
TASTE RATING SCALE: Our (2) tasters experience of the balance of bitter, sour, and umami was different:
Taster 1: Bitter: 7 Astringency: 7 Sour: 6 Salty: 2 Sweet: 1 Umami: 3
Taster 2: Bitter: 3 Astringency: 7 Sour: 4 Salty: 2 Sweet: 1 Umami: 1
Our Pairing-The Tasting Lab: None.
Overall Impressions: Farnum Hill Ciders DANCE. Visually, and in the mouth. Farmhouse Cider is no exception. The tannins and bitter notes tussle and tumble in this cider* and give you quite a flavor ride. Farmhouse is rustic yet focused, with bitter, sour, drying elements all jostling, and giving dimension to the cider. The aromas of this bumptious blend almost insists you drink it. For all its rough-hewn charm, this cider’s profile is very precise and finely honed. When drinking a Farnum Hill, you experience a well crafted, rounded, fully complete cider. There are no wrong notes, and much enjoyment to be had.
*This may be why our (2) tasters had different experiences of Bitter and Sour balance in this cider.
TERMS, DEFINITIONS & LINGO:
BSA Bitter Sweet Apple: Referring to aroma and flavor characteristics of Bitter-Sweet Apple varieties used for cider. Bittersweet apples are low in acids and high in tannins. Tannin accounts for two palate sensations: astringency and bitterness.
Bittersweet apples impart the characteristic flavour of English ciders; as the name implies they are low in acid and high in tannin. The latter is responsible for two sensations on the palate – astringency and bitterness. In the bittersweet apple, there is a whole range of combinations of these two characteristics, varying from little astringency coupled with intense bitterness to very marked astringency coupled with mild bitterness. Typical bittersweets are Dabinett, Yarlington Mill and Tremlett’s Bitter.
ADDITIONAL READING: FH Cider Talk & Terms Farnum Hill explains their cider profiles and the philosophy behind the ciders they craft.
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