2022 DARLING CREEK
Traditional Method Dry Cider
$21 | 750 ml
Tasting notes: sumac berries ~ popcorn ~ roses
The Story of Darling Creek 2022
In 2015 I met Rick Rainey and started working with him at Winebow to distribute our ciders. Since we were Winebow’s first orchard-based cider, I spent a lot of time and effort educating their wine-focused sales team on just what cider really is. But I also got an education -- tasting wine I’d never had before at trade shows and interfacing with sommeliers and wine shop buyers. Back then, the buzz around natural wine was reaching a fever pitch. Everyone was asking “are your apples organic? Do you sulfite? Do you pitch yeast?” I had never really considered fermenting with native yeasts because I didn’t know how and because it seemed risky. Rick told me not to worry about it, that great drinks were made with both natural yeast and inoculated yeast. But he told me about how they were approaching it at his winery (Forge Cellars) and I ended up becoming intrigued. I credit Rick for pushing me in the direction of fermenting with wild yeast, and fermenting in neutral oak, two techniques that I think have made our ciders better and more interesting.
That said, we are not engaging in a purity contest and will pitch yeast if we’ve failed at nurturing the wild yeast. That was the case with this blend. Heavy on Krys, a variety that we always find difficult to ferment dry, these tanks got stuck at 1.034 specific gravity, and wouldn’t get going again despite my best efforts at pumpovers, warmth and aeration. So we pitched DV10 and got the job done.
Autumn Stoscheck Cider Maker/ Orchardist
This cider is made with the following blend of apples grown in our Newfield orchard:
Aroma~ Idared 31%, Akane 10%, Liberty 2%
Acidity~ Krys 30%, Geneva Early 10%, Pink Pearl 2%
Texture~ Herefordshire Redstreak 7%, Ashton Bitter 3%, Virginia Crab 3%, Somerset Redstreak 2%
Primary fermentation in stainless steel with both wild and commercial yeast. Secondary fermentation in-bottle, followed by disgorging.