On the northeast corner of the Olympic Peninsula is an extension of land called the Quimper Peninsula, named after Manuel Quimper, a Spanish Peruvian explorer, cartographer, naval officer, and colonial official. The narrow peninsula became the home of Port Townsend, Chimacum, Glen Cove and Fort Worden, just to name a few highlights. Today, Quimper Peninsula is home to some of the best cideries in Washington state, including Finnriver Farm & Cidery. In addition to growing a certified-organic heirloom-variety orchard on their historic 50-acre farm, Finnriver co-owners Keith and Crystie Kisler, co-owner Eric Jorgensen, head cidermaker Andrew Byers and crew run a certified B corporation, meaning that a positive impact on society, workers, the community and the environment are no less important goals than generation of profit. Stop by Peaks & Pints for a delicious to-go flight of Finnriver cider that we call Peak and Pints Pilot Program: Finnriver Cider On The Fly.
Peak and Pints Pilot Program: Finnriver Cider On The Fly
Finnriver’s small batch Pear Cider features cider fermented on the farm using 100 percent organic apple juice pressed from Washington apples. Finnriver ferments the apple juice, and then sweetens it with organic pear for additional depth, sweetness and flavor, although apples rule the nose here. There’s a certain bitterness grounding the pear flavor, pulling it out of the realm of single-note sweetness.
Inspired by World Apple Day Oct. 21, Finnriver invites friends and neighbors to bring their bruised, bitter and bizarre apples to the farm to add to the bins. The cidermakers then press and ferment this medley of fruit, and slightly sweeten to balance acidity and tannins. They conduct three different ferments with three different yeast strains to harvest subtleties from each and combine together for a cloudy yet clean farmhouse cider. Sweetened with organic cane sugar. It hits the nose with warm bread and sweet apple. It offers a rustic taste of the ripe orchard and hearty homestead cider tradition. Nutty with a sharp acidity that balances a gentle tannic finish. Unfiltered lees lend body to this cider.
A select blend of Certified Organic Washington apples from the Yakima Valley is fermented in stainless steel tanks at low temperatures to capture the full ester profile of the apples. Once fermentation is complete, this cider is then aged for 12 to 16 weeks in rye whiskey barrels from High West Distillery in Park City, Utah. The 2017 Good Food Awards winning Finnriver Oak & Apple has bright citrus with a smooth whiskey depth and spicy rye spirit. Woody astringency balances the acidity, and then finishes with lovely toasted oak and vanilla notes.
Finnriver makes small batches of Black Currant cider year-round, featuring cider fermented on the farm using 100 percent organic apple juice pressed from Washington apples. They ferment the apple juice in stainless steel tanks, and then blend with black currant and unrefined organic cane sugar for additional depth, sweetness and flavor. Expect bright apple fruit balanced by berry complexity; sweet and sour notes, with a light sparkle and purple blush.