HERITAGE Cider, Aged in QUALITY Oak, for the DISCRIMINATING Consumer


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As with a musical composition,
the creation of an expressive cider requires:
Timber, Dynamics and Tempo.
Timbre focuses on the selection of apple varieties based on their “tone” (character), richness and “harmonic” compatibility. Apples are chosen for their Aromatic, Tart and Astringent qualities as well as their ability to blend together.

Aromatic varieties add flavor & aroma that maintain the apple flavor throughout the production process. Tart apples add the acid content that acts as a counterpart to the sweet of an apple. Tannin brings astringency to the composition, adding depth to the quality of the cider. When aromatics, acid and tannins combine in a cider, it bathes the entire tongue and provides what is described as a full mouthfeel.

The final piece of the orchestration overlays complexity onto the cider. Flavorings from non-apple components like maple and previously used oak barrels bring overtones and undertones that are complimentary to the flavors of a distinctive cider. These “harmonic” additions bring complexity to Patriots’ Heritage Cider.
Dynamics refers to the “loudness” and “softness” of the components of a cider. All of the varietal character described above must be developed into a symphony that plays across your pallet. To do this, a cider needs to play with the strength and concentration of the flavors. Managing these dynamics is the basics of formulation and blending. The Craft Cidermaker must orchestrate the levels of sweetness, tart, aromatics and astringency by varying the quantity of each apple variety.

This blend is then made even more complex throughout the balanced addition of maple syrup for both flavor and increased alcohol content. Even the final alcohol level plays into how your tongue receives the flavors within the cider. Finally, Patriot's Heritage ages the cider in freshly dumped distillery casks to place undertones of oak and spirits.

All of these flavors are measured at varying dynamics to make sure that the composition is balanced and blended with no single component becoming overpowering or lost in the cider. This is the true test of the Craft Cidermaker: blending the individual parts into a cohesive composition.
Tempo has a lot to do with a high quality cider. Fermentation can be a very quick process, converting the sugars to alcohol in a matter of weeks. Mass produced manufacturers want this process to move quickly to maximize production. Patriots’ Heritage manages the tempo of the fermentation process very closely to focus on layers and depth of taste.

Starting with a fast tempo to assure healthy yeast cultures, the process is purposefully slowed to maximize the preservation of flavor and complexity. Allowing the fermentation process to progress over months instead of weeks is a key tool of the true Craft Cidermaker. Timing is also critical for the proper aging of cider, especially when oak barrels are utilized. The proper overtones of oak and spirits are essential to complement the cider rather than overwhelm the developed apple flavor.

Patriots’ Heritage Cider spends a minimum of four months in tanks and barrels before it is bottled for the consumer. This additional time allows the flavors to blend and the higher levels of alcohol to mellow.