Proudly producing Massachusetts-grown and-made cider, Ragged Hill Cider Co. has only been doing so commercially for less than two years, though co-owner and cidermaker Steve Garwood has been fermenting since the 1980s. Every apple that makes it into a Ragged Hill cider is grown, picked, pressed, fermented and bottled at the 100-percent solar-powered orchard and cidery in West Brookfield, Massachusetts, bringing the most traditional mindset of the region’s cidermaking heritage forward.
The limited line-up focuses on a dry and semi-dry offering, but the seasonally released Rasé steps outside of the box a bit, infusing a blend of Empire, Baldwin and Cortland apples with vibrant, estate-grown raspberries. A bushel of fresh raspberries is the immediate and sole focus of the nose from first pour – juicy and fragrant, like berry perfume but without any of the saccharine notes.
Ever make raspberry jam with just-picked fruit from a farmers market? If not, you’ll start planning to this summer after soaking up the scents of this cider. The super-juicy raspberry spills onto the palate, allowing apple in a bit in the end and finishing semi-dry. Raspberry continues to linger, with licks of apple acid closing.