This is the Nouvelle Vague, Eric Bordelet’s easy drinking summer French Cider. July in France is a pretty special time of year. While Paris is buzzing with tourists, the countryside is shining with fields of yellow sunflowers. The mountains have 176 hard men and their bikes battling up an Alp through crowds and orange smoke.
Suddenly the 14th of July rolls around, Bastille Day, it’s France’s national day. No doubt the champagne will be flowing but in certain corners, Cider will be being poured. When I think of quality French Cider there is one name that comes to mind: Eric Bordelet
Bordelet is a sommelier turned Cider maker. I wish more sommeliers would turn into Cider fans but that’s another story. After working in some of France’s best restaurants in the late 80’s early 90’s, Bordelet took over his family farm. This farm just happened to be 23 hectares of certified organic cider apple, perry orchards. Located in southern Normandy, the soil is a rich red colour, a sedimentary soil made up of granite and a clay subsoil.
A heady mix of sweet fresh juice and the infamous French barnyard house funk, it’s not of horse but heaps of brown sugar. There is a background scent that reminds me of stone dust.
I was thinking this was going to be a sweet French style cider but it is much dryer than I was expecting, still with brown sugar molasses elements. Plenty of minerals give a chalky texture with the taste of iron and granite hints. Cold from the fridge the Nouvelle Vague show off the bittersweet and bitter sharp/tart and as it warms the sweetness sneaks through in the smallest quantities.
Final Thoughts on the Nouvelle Vague
Nouvelle Vague is French for new wave which is a pretty apt name because it has all the hallmarks of a French Cider but modernised just a little bit. The dryness and bold flavour matched with a higher than average alcohol content makes it very sociable. The gritty texture demands pairing with picnic nibbles.
Perhaps paired with your Bastille Day celebrations this weekend.
|Country of Origin||France|