Cascade Hops, Wildflower Honey, York Imperial Apples
Today’s Wine Wednesday review is technically not a wine. It’s a cider. This is not your ordinary apple juice. Inspired by the methods colonial Americans used to make their favorite alcoholic beverage, Millstone Cellars uses heirloom cider apples fermented and aged in oak barrels, then blended with honey, fruits, and/or spices.
Hopvine is a cask cider, aged with Maryland dry hops and blended with raw honey. I sampled it at the Baltimore Farmers’ Market and Bazaar. When I heard that it had hops, I was reluctant to try it. Hops put the bitter in beer. Some beers, such as Imperial Pale Ales (IPAs) are hoppier than others. I am not a fan of bitter beers. The Millstone Cellars representative put me at ease. The hops are not heated, so they don’t impart the bitterness that they usually do in beers.
This cider is effervescent. The nose yields the scent of apples, honey, and some floral notes. Hopvine features apple flavors with a bracing citrusy finish. It’s dry with a hint of sweetness. This bubbly reminds me of an off-dry sparkling wine. It paired nicely with pan-seared pork chops. I even used a bit in the pan sauce I made to go with them.
I thoroughly enjoyed Hopvine. I look forward to trying more offerings from Millstone Cellars
Have you tried any unique ciders lately? Let me know in the comments!