Siider Bohnapfel (2018)10417
Based at the southern end of the Jura mountain chain, brothers Cyrill and Ivan were left their grandfather's orchard in 2013. Cyril is a winemaker and Ivan an arborist, and from the outset they knew they wanted to make ciders from totally untreated fruit and bottle it with zero additives. Their area has a long tradition of growing and making cider but that had almost disappeared over the previous two or three generations leaving a wealth of old apple trees with ancient cider varieties essentially abandoned. Today the brothers work with around 30 varieties of apple and pear. The fruit comes from their own orchard, a couple of organic orchards owned by friends and several wild and abandoned trees in the area. All of the trees they work with receive zero treatments of any kind... not even organic preparations.
This is a still cider. Bohnapfel is an old German variety that has been in Switzerland for nearly 200 years. The trees that grow this cuvee are close to 100 years old and the cider is simply a marvel, without question one of the greatest things I've tasted this year. Bohnapfel is very thick-skinned and tannic and is essentially bi-annually fruiting. The 2018 was given six days of cold maceration before being pressed and left to ferment and evolve for 19 months in a single old barrique. This is particularly vinous and, in terms of structure, really reminds me of chenin blanc or riesling. It has that low PH, cleansing palate and is simultaneously supple and round. The year and a half in barrel has allowed the phenolics to really polymerise and drop out giving the cider exceptional elegance and poise.
Region: Zeihen, Aargau, CH
750ml / ABV: 8.2%