Cider Name: Farmhouse
Served: 500ml bottle at room temperature
Smell: Fresh Apples
Carbonation: Lightly sparkling
Hello again all. Remember me? Oh go on, you must do surely? I know, I know, it’s been too long since the last review and I did promise to be a bit more regular with them previously. Unfortunately work and a social life has got in the way keeping this blog up to date, but I’m back again now. Up today is something I never expected to be saying on the blog and that is I have a cider or 3 to try from a small producer in Luxembourg.
Luxembourg I hear you cry…..yes it surprised me too that they produce cider. That small country nestled between France, Belgium & Germany has got in on the cider game too in the shape of Ramborn cider. They are based in Born, Luxembourg and predominantly use the local Rambo apple and thus the name of their company is (Ram)born. Quite a simple and catchy name, just how I like it!
They were founded by Carlo Hein, Gérard Bisenius and Gilles Dimmer, who went on a trip to the UK and discovered what cider was all about and then wanted to make some back in their homeland. They currently use apples from local orchards/farmers in the village and surrounding areas (from around 80 farmers/orchards in total). These apples range from the Rambo apple, to other local Luxembourger ones and even some apples more like the cider apples we get back here in the UK.
As for the production, they are slowly growing as a company, but currently crush their own apples and are using a mobile press. Then after that, they are using a local winery (Domaine Vinsmoselle) to help with the fermenting, blending and bottling of the cider. That’s what good neighbours are for eh?!?! As they grow they look to host more and build more onto their farm site and see where that takes them. They are apparently currently building some facilities onto the farm as we speak.
Of the 3 ciders they have (Farmhouse, Somerset Blend & CM Blend), the one that’s up first today is the Farmhouse. This is billed as paying a tribute to how cider used to be drank in Luxembourg and is best served with cheese/cured meats. I have neither on hand, but that won’t stop me from trying it!
It’s made from around 70% Rambo apples and the rest are other local, traditional varieties. It will be interesting to see how this compares with both cider we have in the UK and whether it has much of an Apfelwein influence on it. Anyway, enough of the rambling and more of the tasting….
As I opened the bottle I saw and heard no bubbles, which I thought was a bit odd. However, once it was poured, then that seemed to wake it up a bit and there was an initial foamy head, followed by a small and slow stream of tiny bubbles.
It poured very clear, golden in colour and has an Eastern style, fresh apple aroma about it. I take in my first sip and it’s like biting into a fresh, crunchy apple and then the sourness/dryness starts getting to you after a few seconds. There’s a high level of acidity, moderate tannins (yet not overpowering) and lovely lingering dry aftertaste. It’s a bit of an Eastern Counties cider crossed with an Apfelwein in some ways. It’s one of these ciders that at first I’m not sure about (as I’m more of a West Country cider man), but as the pint goes on it has grown on me more and more. It’s well worth trying to see if it’s your thing.
Would I buy this again?: Yes
Overall Rating: 8/10
Disclaimer: This was a free sample from Ramborn, however this had no bearing on my review of this cider.