A  Chicago Cider Week cider session with Eden Ciders of Vermont, Farnum Hill of New Hampshire, and Stem Ciders of Colorado

 

Inspired by a spontaneous #cidertsunami with Fingerlakes cidermakers in Baltimore during CiderCon, and knowing that several cidermakers were coming to town for Chicago Cider Week, we orchestrated a last minute, super cozy Meet the Maker / Heritage Cider Share in happy collaboration with Birch Road Cellar, a BYOB Social Club in Chicago’s Roscoe Village. Eden Ciders, Farnum Hill Cider and Stem Ciders met with club members and friends of cidrbox at the welcoming and laid back venue (“a bar without the bar,” one member called it) to pour and share and talk about their extraordinary beverages, fresh pressed and fermented from heritage apples using traditional methods.

While the memories are still warm I wanted to capture this tasting list / cheat sheet of the ciders, ice cider, aperitifs and cocktails that were poured that night, along with the cheese that we chose to pair them with (informed by the cheesy wisdom of Pastoral Artisan). Also shared here are audio tasting notes of several of the ciders, captured during orchard visits with the cidermakers over the last year. It would be impossible to recreate the evening—packed with the good company of extraordinary individuals and exceptional beverages—but, by revisiting the flavors, maybe we can keep the memories warm and alive.

 

Ciders shared

EDEN CIDERS

Available in Chicago from Independent Spirits

FARNUM HILL CIDER

STEM CIDERS

  • Colorado Heritage Blend (limited run, limited availability, check in with the folks at Stem Ciders for more info)

Cheeses paired

Ryan Bishop from Farnum Hill joined us to pour their Farnum Hill Extra Dry Still and Farnum Hill Extra Dry (Sparkling) • Audio tasting notes are from our orchard visit in September of 2017

Ryan Bishop from Farnum Hill joined us to pour their Farnum Hill Extra Dry Still and Farnum Hill Extra Dry (Sparkling) • Audio tasting notes are from our orchard visit in September of 2017

Farnum Hill Extra Dry Still • 750ML • 7.5% ABV • Still and dry • Sharp and tannic • Bright balance of tannin, fruit and tartness • Strawberries and mixed berry fruit on the palate
Farnum Hill Extra Dry (Sparkling) • 750ML • 7.5%ABV • Bone dry and sparkling • Bright balance of fruit, tannin, and tartness • Rich aromatics suggest fruits of the earth and the earth itself • Generous, subtle progression of flavor • Pairs well with food traditionally paired with red wine

Eden Sparkling Dry • Winner of Best in Class GLINTCAP 2016 • Blended from heirloom and bittersweet apple varieties grown in Vermont • Dry, delightful and naturally sparkling due to in-bottle secondary fermentation • Each bottle is hand-disgorged for a clean cider that is unpasteurized and unfiltered • Classic Kingston Black cider apples impart rich tannic structure

Eden Heirloom Blend Ice Cider • 375ml • 10% ABV • Good Food Award Gold Seal Winner 2015 • Best in Class GLINTCAP 2014 • Complex, delicious, sweet • Each bottle contains 8lbs of 15 varieties of heirloom and traditional apples • Fermented for 1-3 years • Juice is cold-concentrated prior to fermentation in Vermont’s northern climate to coax out the optimum balance of sweetness and acidity

Eden Imperial 11º Rose Cider • 750ml • 11% ABV • Just off- dry, gently sparkling • Blended heirloom apple varieties from Eden’s orchards and five local family orchards nearby • Carefully blended with red currant and a small addition of ice cider • Bright acidity and chewy tannic structure

Poverty Lane Orchards (where the apples for Farnum Hill Cider are grown), just after dawn, first day of harvest September 2017

Poverty Lane Orchards (where the apples for Farnum Hill Cider are grown), just after dawn, first day of harvest September 2017