Quinces are the often-forgotten member of the pomme family, you may have only heard of it in the quince paste form next to the brie on the cheese board. Pagan Cider has a history with apples combined with extra fruity bits in ciders. The Pagan Quince Cider is the latest in their lineup.
The question is why would Pagan want to put quince in a Cider? Quinces are not going to win a beauty contest any time soon but just because the fruit is ugly is no automatic entry into Club Cider. Quince are well known for their tartness, if you eat one fresh from the tree it would be basically inedible because of the tartness and sourness. It’s common to be left to fruit and be hit by early winter frosts to help it start to sweeten up.
It’s this abundance of sourness and tartness found in the quince that is lacking in most apples grown in Australia. So, by adding the quince in, you can create profiles more reminiscent of European Ciders.
Pagan Quince Cider is a limited release. It is made up of mostly Tasmanian grown apples with the rest made up from locally grown quince. The problem with the limited release is that it is a very small production run available from the Pagan’s Cellar Door
A couple of caveats before I start. My parents posted this bottle direct from the cellar door in Tasmania that they visited on their holiday. Big thank you to mum and dad. As soon as it arrived it went straight in to the fridge. I should have probably left it a few days to settle, so my glass is seriously cloudy, think watery tomato soup. Not 100% sure that is how the Cider makers at Pagan indented it to be drunk but that’s how I’m drinking it.
The quince is coming in loud and proud, sort of a sweet acidic mix of dark chocolate and summery melons. If you have every had a slice of quince paste on your brie and biscuit, well this is it amped up. The scent on the alcohol is very apparent for a 8% Cider
The Pagan Quince Cider is a big astringent bomb but it’s been tamed by the sharp edges that have been sanded off. It is very well balanced, whilst the sharpness of the quince is the hero it is balanced out by some juicy apples. The delicate bubbles break up the thick texture of this very cloudy cider.
The finish is long and lingers on with the taste of apples
Final Thoughts on Pagan Quince Cider
The addition of quince is an interesting one. Cider is made from apples; Perry is from pears but the quinces main claim to fame is as the base for a distilled spirit but rarely in a wine style drink. The reason it’s been added is to give a bigger, more full-on flavour not possible with eating apples. It will be interesting to see what English cider fans say about it.
As for the taste, Pagan Ciders Quince Cider is begging to be matched with a plate of soft creamy cheeses. It’s very… quiet Sunday afternoon with friends.
|Product||Pagan Quince Cider|
|Country of Origin||Australia|
|Region||Houn Valley, Tasmania|