Cocktail Recipe: Snow Capped Cider Desert Rose

by | Oct 2, 2020

The Western Slope is where it’s at for growing apples in Colorado. Technically everything west of the Continental Divide, the Western Slope encompasses roughly one-third of the state and about 70% of the state’s water, with the Colorado River and its tributaries dividing the region. A semi-arid climate with drainage from the river makes the land rich for farming, including fruit trees.

The Williams family came to agriculture in the Western Slope relatively early — five generations ago. The family orchards are located at the bottom of Grand Mesa in the Surface Creek Valley, a high-elevation, warm-day and cool-night climate optimal for apples. Using that fruit, Snow Capped Cider produces a wide variety of ciders from these estate-grown apples, run by owner Kari Williams. In addition to the ciders, Williams and team have started playing with cider cocktails for their consumers.

“We love the opportunity to create cocktails with cider, [it] adds unique and layered flavors and character to mixed drinks,” she says. “It also really increases the ABV, so be careful!”

A natural selection to feature in a cocktail, the Molly’s Rockies Rosé is a pink hued-cider of Pinova apples that gets its color from aging on Colorado Malbec grape skins. “As the aging begins, we stir the lees [skins] in the barrel, which promotes uptake of the flavor and color as the fermentation process continues,” Williams adds. “We blend elderberries pre-ferment into the historic Pinova apples for a touch of additional fruity flavor.”
For the cocktail, titled Desert Rose, the cider is mixed with tequila and pomegranate juice. Williams says the cider brings depth and floral notes to the drink, with tequila offering a smoky finish and pomegranate pulling out the fruity tones. She recommends pairing with seafood or fajitas for a recipe to success.

Desert Rose

Makes 1 cocktail

8 ounces Molly’s Rockies Rosé, chilled
1 ounce pomegranate juice, chilled
1 ounce tequila
Splash of seltzer water, chilled
Garnish: pomegranate seeds
In a tall glass, add all ingredients then stir to combine. Top of pomegranate seeds.

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