Thursday, March 7th, 2024

Peaks and Pints Cider Flight: Finnriver


In the rolling farmland of Chimacum Valley along a salmon stream just south of Port Townsend, the Finnriver orchards stretch across 80 acres using more than 20 different varieties of apple tree. Their mission is to reconnect people to the land that sustains us and to grow community. They seek to create deep-rooted and fruitful connections at their farm-based taproom and rural gathering space. Finnriver’s farm and orchard is Certified Organic and Salmon Safe, and the company is a Certified B Corporation, seeking to make business a force for good. Finnriver also makes exceptional cider, thanks to head cidermaker Andrew Byers. Byers, a botanist, wordsmith, and Le Cordon Bleu chef turned cidermaker, has been managing microbial populations at Finnriver for almost 10 years; before that he helped produce estate-grown sparkling cider in cider orchards of upstate New York.  He mastered an academic emphasis in fungal ecology and systems thinking/design to the forefront of his home cider production, as well as a deep knowledge of tree fruit. Bring your dictionary on Byers-led tours of the farm. NW Beverages distribution company just added Finnriver Farm & Cidery to their portfolio — and they’re celebrating with a Finnriver tap takeover at Peaks & Pints from 5-8 p.m. tonight. In conjunction, Peaks & Pints offers an all-day flight of Finnriver cider in a flight we’re calling Peaks and Pints Cider Flight: Finnriver.

Peaks and Pints Cider Flight: Finnriver

Finnriver Pear Cider

6.5% ABV

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.

Finnriver Honey Meadow

6.5% ABV

Finnriver produces a line of botanical ciders that share the earthly essence of life in the fields and forests of the Olympic Peninsula. They feature local ingredients that are iconic or flourishing in that region and each seeks to capture the essence of the season. Honey Meadow speaks directly to the roots, shoots, and blooms of spring on the Olympic Peninsula. Locally harvested burdock and dandelion roots are dried and roasted in the farm’s wood-fired oven and then boiled into a house-made syrup. The roots balance the acidity of certified organic Washington apples with their earthy depth and nutty notes and then the cidery adds Sequim Bee Farm blackberry honey to add the floral and herbs to honor the season.

Finnriver Tideline

6.5% ABV

This cider is a thoughtful infusion of the Hama Hama hillsides and coastlines. A taste of two communities, trees and cider, flowers, and fruit. This is a botany of Hama Hama immersed in the fermentation of Finnriver. Made with organic golden russet apples, nootka rosehips, and Grand fir tips for smells of pine resin and earth, followed by crisp edgy citrus peel and a grounding, slightly nutty finish from the rose hips.

Finnriver Farmstead

6.5% ABV

Inspired by World Apple Day every October, 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 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.

Finnriver Blue Hewe

9.5% ABV

Made with Finnriver’s estate organic Hewe’s Virginia Crab and William’s Pride apples, as well as estate organic blueberries, Blue Hewe hits the nose with leather and tart fruit, hay bales and wine. Roving acids carry notes of sweet pear and caramel. Expect a strikingly sharp, creamy texture and a long finish.

LINK: NW Beverages hugs Finnriver at Peaks & Pints

LINK: Peaks & Pints beer and cider cooler inventory