A late start to the day began with a French Perry tasting. The attendees in the packed room had the opportunity to taste perrys (poire in France) from two producers- Ghislaine Davy from Cidererie Daufresne (which we previously reviewed here) and Guillaume Drouin from Christian Drouin Estate in Normandy
In the mid-1900s, Normandy, France had ~500k pear trees, but by 1999 only 100k trees remained. To help save the pear tree population, producers began to plant high stem orchards near the old ones and by 2003 Normandy had 300k pear trees. Poire pears are small, hard, astringent (due to variations in polyphenol levels) and inedible. The most traditional poire perry is the Plant de blanc variety, which is used in the majority of poire (between 50-100%).
Cidererie Daufresne – Off-Dry
The poire is fermented using a wine yeast which gives it a slightly sour aroma. The poire is blended from several juices Plant de Blanc, Fausset – which provides some sweetness, and Branche – which adds astringency and tannis.
Christian Drouin Estate – Off-Dry “Farmhouse” Style
The poire is produced with Plant de Blanc, Muscadet, Tricotin, Avenelle and Poire de Grise. The aromas have a slightly yeasty nose. The poire is sparkling with slight tannins and bright acidity. The finish on the poire lingers on the tongue, due in part to the effervescence which takes a while to die down.