Etienne Dupont’s ciders are widely available in the United States and considered among the finest leaving France for our shores. This 2012 edition of the Organic Cidre Bouche Brut de Normandie is produced from a selection of traditional French cider apples including the Bisquet, Joly Rouge, Couce Coet and Binet Rouge. The cider is certified organic, made with no added sulfides and is fermented with native yeasts. Finally, the cidery notes that this bottle should age well for 5 years. It would be fascinating to see what develops in this cider after 5 or more years. Certainly the tannins and acids would soften, but it’s the future flavors and aromas that I’d like to sample.
The 2012 Etienne Dupont Cidre Bouche is a beautiful looking cider from the moment it hits the glass with an enormous head to the moment it settles and the bubbles begin to ascend. Clear like Champagne but colored richly golden, the 2012 Cidre Bouche has a savory and refreshing look to it. The aromas mark this cider as decidedly French. Intense roasted apple aromas mix with hints of lemon and a decidedly yeasty quality. Some might call this latter aroma “funk”, but it’s not. It’s….dank. The feel of the 2012 on the palate is, again, Champagne-like. Serious effervescence and acidity attack the palate along with a modicum of astringent tannins. There’s a weighty feel here despite the sparkle. Finally, there’s the flavor of roasted and well-aged apples that hit the taste buds and don’t go away. Not much lemon or citrus is present and the hint of sweetness is based on fruit more than sugar. Notes of mustiness appear for your delight. The Cider leaves a lasting finish. The balance here is notable, and impressive. This would be the type of cider perfectly suited to pair with a pork or truffle-based course at a dinner party. It reminds me of a dirtier version of the 2011 EZ Orchard Cidre from Oregon. Finally, for the quality of this cider, it is a ridiculously good value.