Recently I reviewed St Ronan’s Draught Cider. Now as part of my series on Methode Tradionelle Ciders it’s time to taste the Draughts big brother, The St Ronan’s Methode Traditionelle.
The Draught and the MT are very close siblings. In fact they start life from the same batch. Using a combination of eating apples from the Yarra Valley chosen for their high tannin levels. Midway through production the batch is split, half is destined to end up in kegs, while the other half is lucky enough to get the special treatment.
The Methode Traditionelle process is long and time-consuming, so why do companies like St Ronans bother when there are simpler and cheaper ways to make a cider?
We make our big gun range of ciders in the Traditional Champagne Methode for one reason and one reason alone, it is the only process that we have seen that produces the exceptional quality and unique style of Cider that we love to drink !! – Troy from St Ronans
St Ronan’s use white wine yeast to intensify the aromatics. When the White wine yeast becomes sediment as lees it is allowed to sit there for between 2 and 6 months. The goal here is to add texture and highlight the tannins, a wise move as eating apples are comparatively low in tannins compared with traditional cider apples.
St Ronan’s have created a unique riddling method to save a bit of time.
Our Riddling method is a bit different, we put a pallet of inverted bottles on the fork and run it over the gravel out the front of the shop. Not elegant but drops all the dead yeast into the neck just fine.
Up front it’s a boutique of floral flavours harmonising with a sweet apple perfume with just a hint of mustiness for balance.
St Ronan’s starts out with just a little gentle smooth sweetness, reminiscent of a Pink Lady. The sweetness quickly gives ways to a butteriness and toasty similar to a loaf of sourdough bread. The flavours from this cloudy cider roll around on a fine bead of bottle condition bubbles. There is just a little bit of funk, a raw earthiness, it rounds everything out and gives another layer of this methode traditionelle cider.
I can’t get over how round and smooth. You can tell that there is a lot of care has gone into the cider.
Final Thoughts on St Ronan’s Methode Traditionelle Apple Cider
This is pretty easy for me to recommend. This is my favourite style of cider and St Ronan’s MT is an excellent example of a Methode Tradionelle cider. The base cider here is top shelf, you can taste it in the Draught. The MT is just on another level of sophistication. That texture and butteriness would sit beautifully with the texture of fatty cured meats. The tannins should clear your palate. St Ronan’s recommend this as a drink to serve with canopés at the start of an evening. With a lower alcohol that champagne, it should be a great way to start your evening. Expect to see this in my best of 2015 list.
|Country of Origin||Australia|
|Region||Yarra Valley, Victoria|