Traditional Cider Review: Bordatto Basandere

Traditional Cider reviews are dedicated to the ciders that are made with 100% apples.
Cidery: Domaine Bordatto Etxaldea; Bordatto Etxaldea
Cider: Basandere
Serving:  750 mL bottles
Alcohol Content:  8 % ABV
Style: Traditional Cider
Availability: Year-round
We had a wonderful dinner last night at Graham Elliot Bistro in Chicago. In addition to the great food and great music we also stumbled across a great cider. The Bordatto Basandere was offered on the wine list and had been a part of the restaurant’s tasting menu. We were lucky enough to snag the last bottle and were happy we did.
The 2012 Basandere, which translates to “Wild Woman”, is an off-dry cider. Bordatto’s cider maker began his career as a winemaker and those wine making skills are  present in this cider which is made with up to 19 hand-harvested heirloom apples, each fermented separately. The cider also employs native yeasts, which are used to naturally ferment the cider in stainless steel for 3 months, followed by a 3 month aging in the bottle. The Basandere is similar in taste to a “funky” UK cider (e.g. Hogan’s Dry Cider) but the sour flavor is not as overpowering and can stand up well to a rich chicken or pork dish.
Tasting Notes
Very deep golden color with slight bubbles when poured. Aromas of sour apples with a bit of herb. This cider is has a pleasantly tart sour musky apple taste with floral notes. The off-dry cider finishes with a slightly acidic after taste.
Wine Lovers: Why Drink It?
This off-dry cider will appeal to lovers of Grüner Veltliner. The “richer, creamier” Grüner Veltliner has layers citrus and slightly sweet flavors. That complexity is similar to what is found in the Basandere with the layers sour apple and slight sweetness.
Score:  8.5/10 – Exceptional

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