Methode Perry is a very limited release cider by the Hills Cider Company from South Australia. You’ll see why this is a small run cider when you see how much time and effort goes into making this pear cider.
The Methode Perry started life in 2010. The Hills Company decided to make a French style perry (pear cider) using pears normally used for the fruit bowl, rather than pears bred specially for perry production, mainly because there are next to none of these varieties growing in Australia. Perry pears are famous for being hard to grow, tall trees that mature very slowly. Pears for your heirs as they say.
So when the 2010 crop was milled, the pulp was wrapped up in cloth and slowly pressed. The weight of the stacked cloths is enough to get the juices flowing with out the need for any weights. This first extract of the juice is known as “free run” it’s the equivalent of extra virgin olive oil. This is what’s used to make the Methode Perry
The primary ferment is where most of the alcohol is made. For the Methode Perry this happens in barrels, where the liquid is in contact with the dead yeast cells and the particles of pear flesh, collectively known as lees. The time in contact with the lees imparts toasty flavours. It’s allowed to relax in the barrels for 2 years.
After 2 years the Methode Perry is bottled, temporarily, while the secondary ferment happens. This is when the fizz is made. Another year down the track (2013) some lees build up in the bottle so its disgorged and finally corked. Ready to drink. The whole process is known as Methode Traditionelle As it ages the flavours will change.
Chocolate and dark caramel with smooth pear, undertones of orange marmalade and a little alcoholic heat in the form of a kerosene scent.
Round and unctuous.
A base of crusty bread topped with a thick rich orange marmalade, which conveniently is the same colour as this perry. It’s a spicy pear yet at the same time it’s incredibly mellow. This is none of the harsh after tones that turn me away from younger perrys. The acids are there, I’d put it on par with a fresh orange juice but so much smoother, that’s what the age does to it. Seasoned drinkers will put this almost exactly half way between a Brandy and an aged Riesling. After so many years the fizz is still politely vigorous carrying the flavours around your mouth.
Final Thoughts on the Methode Perry
Being a 2010 vintage release in 2013 there probably aren’t many of these left out in the shops. But think of this as a Formula 1 car. Let’s face it, you and I never going to drive an F1 car, I’ve been drinking and I don’t know what your excuse is. But the innovations made by the engineers at the pinnacle of motor racing will find their way into everyday cars. In the same way the Methode Perry is a play ground to entertain the cider makers and lets them hone their skills that will trickle down into The Hills Company’s more widely available cider.
|Company||The Hills Cider Company|
|Country of Origin||Australia|
|Region||Adelaide Hills, South Australia.|
March 12, 2016
Great review! I enjoyed all the extra info about the process by which it was made–thanks for sharing.