Cheers To You

An exploration of all things wine with local wine expert Mary Earl.
Subscribe to RSS
Back to Cheers To You

Posts Tagged ‘Finnriver Cidery’

What we’re drinking: Finnriver Cidery

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013

Mary writes:

Finnriver Cidery has been popping up in my glass a lot lately. So I just have to share the delights this wonderful farm is pouring out.

At the fifth annual Kitsap Wine Festival at Harborside Fountain Park, this Chimacum Cidery served up their Pear Cider, Pear Brandy, Artisan Sparkling Cider, Black Currant Wine and Spirited Apple Wine.

The Sparkling Pear Cider was incredibly refreshing on that hot summer day. It’s a semi-sweet blend of organic apples and pears which was a nice match with the ahi tuna from Anthony’s.

The other wine that got my attention was the Black Currant Wine. So concentrated it stained the glass and the aromas were pure black currant. It’s port-like in that they blend with apple brandy and is sweet, well-balanced dessert wine.

My next encounter a few weeks later, was with the Blind Wine Group who hosted a Méthode Champenoise tasting. The rules were specific: bring a bottle that was made in the traditional méthode champenoise.

This means that the wine goes through a second fermentation in the bottle. Traditionally, a bottle of Champagne would go through this process anywhere from one to three years.

Finnriver uses the riddling racks, hand turning the bottles and disgorgement methods to make a naturally carbonated sparkling cider. It’s a labor intensive process and well worth the wait.

Of the 12 bottles of sparkling wine and champagne presented at the tasting, no one guessed that it was not made from grapes like the other eleven. It was that good.

And just in case you think that I’m exaggerating, take a look at the medals it has garnered:

  • Double Gold Medal, 2011 Seattle Wine Awards.
  • Silver Medal, 2011 Great Lakes International Cider and Perry Competition.
  • Silver Medal, 2011 Northwest Wine Summit.
  • ‘American Champagne Toast,’ 2012 Good Food Awards
  • Silver Medal, 2013 Seattle Wine Awards
  • ‘Best of the Northwest, Dry Cider,’ 2013 SIP Magazine

Finnriver is such a delightful place to visit. I encourage you to drop in and savor the farm community, the cidery and the fresh air either in person or online: www.finnriver.com.


Try this low alcohol sparkler for Mother’s Day brunch

Friday, May 11th, 2012

Mother’s Day is a day to celebrate and what better way to toast the mother in your life than with a glass of bubbly?

If you’re planning to do a brunch this year for your celebration we’ve got a great recommendation that isn’t your run of the mill bubbly, and it’s made locally.

Ann Vogel’s Mother’s Day recipes for yogurt parfaits and apple Dutch babies calls for a partner in wine with lots of fruit flavor to echo the fruit in the dish; the bubbles will contrast the creamy yogurt.

This is where the Olympic Peninsula’s Finnriver Farm and Cidery enters the picture.

An artisan cidery and organic farm located in the Chimacum Valley, Finnriver produces its ciders from heirloom apples and berries grown at the farm. They also glean apples from old homesteads in the valley and from a family farm in Eastern Washington.

Cider has a long history — it was the drink of choice for the colonists. Cheap and easy to make, it was consumed for any event imaginable — weddings, funerals, Mother’s Day, baptisms, barn and church raisings and even breakfast.

Ciders can and do vary in style from a drier, more traditional style from Normandy and England, to the sweeter sparkling blends made with berries in Washington.

Finnriver’s award-winning ciders are handcrafted from the orchards to the bottle. They like to experiment with small-batches fruit blends to see what Mother Nature has offered them at harvest.

The sumptuous sparkling hard ciders are made with apples, pears and berries. Perfect for this Mother’s Day menu.

A few suggestions include:

The Artisan Sparkling Cider. Fermented using the traditional, labor-intensive méthode champenoise this wine is perfectly balanced, crisp with distinct apple aromas and flavors. The bubbles are small and make a bright, champagne-style cider.

The Sparkling Pear Cider is made from heirloom apples, blended with sweet pear. A soft sprightly sparkle accompanies the definite pear aromas and semi-sweet pear flavors of this cider.

The Sparkling Black Currant Cider is lighter is body and has a pretty blush color. It’s a blend of sweet heirloom apples and tart black currant. This one is also semi-sweet.

Finnriver is located at 62 Barn Swallow Road in Chimacum. A trip to their tasting room gives you a chance to sample their wines — and decide which you might want to serve mom this Mother’s Day.


Friday ‘wine’ tasting in Silverdale

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

This isn’t technically a wine tasting, but it is a tasting and it involves fermented fruits, so we’re posting about it because it fits in the realm of fun things to do and try in Kitsap.

On Friday Monica Downen, owner of Monica’s Waterfront Bakery and Café, will be hosting another tasting event.

This time the items to be poured will be hard ciders. Downen has invited Finnriver Farm and Cidery to hop peninsulas from their home in Chimacum to Old Town Silverldale.

The tasting runs from 4 to 6:30 p.m. and requires no reservations. The Finnriver people will talk about their certified organic farm and the French style of their hard ciders, according to Downen.

Here’s what Monica’s Facebook page says about the evening:

We have the special honor of having Finnriver Cidery with us for this tasting! Luckily in time for mother’s day, their ‘Methode Champenoise’ sparkling ciders and cordial style dessert wines are the tastiest around! Learn all about them and meet Jim from their Tasting Room!

Get 6 tastes of wine with appetizers to go with them! Please bring a donation for the food bank.

Wind down your week and wind up your weekend with a Wine Tasting at Monica’s! Everyone will be entered into a drawing to win a $20 gift certificate! You do not have to be present to win! Come on in, enjoy great wines and a few nibbley things to go along with them.


Archives: Cheers to You