Dunkertons Organic Ciders got its start in 1980 when Ivor and Susie Dunkerton fled the hectic city life in London to give a bucolic country life a try. They purchased a small farm in the Welsh countryside of Pembridge, Herefordshire. The Dunkertons began producing estate cider and perry using only the best traditional varietals with organic methods. Dunkertons is a newer addition to the American market.
Perry, as the name alludes to, is a fermented drink made entirely from pears. Perry pears, like cider apples, are almost inedible. They’re hard, tannic, and highly acidic. If you can get your teeth into them, prepare to have your mouth assaulted. But like cider apples, they turn into a wondrously tasty beverage when smashed and fermented. Perry (Poiré in French) pear trees are slow to grow and fruit but will live for hundreds of years. Because of their slow development and large size, many trees have been removed and not replaced leading to Perries and Poiré becoming a rare drink.
Fortunately, there are several producers world-wide investing the time and energy into preserving Perry trees and planting new ones. If you’ve not had an authentic Perry or Poiré, you owe it to yourself to go find one or two to try out. Be careful when purchasing though, there are a lot of “Pear Ciders” on the market. They are not a Perry or a Poiré. They’re normal apple cider that has been flavored with dessert pears. While enjoyable in their own right, they are leagues away from a true Perry.
Appearance: Light haze, pale blond.
Aroma: Tea, floral, unripe peaches, orange blossoms, tart pear, buttery notes.
Taste: Medium tannins, medium acidity, mild +/medium – astringency
Overall Impression: Dunkertons Organic Perry is simultaneously elegant and assertive. It’s tart, complex, and very tasty. This is an exceptional British Perry and a good one to try for both newbies and experienced perryphiles.
CO2: Lightly sparkling
Geography: Pembridge, Herefordshire, England
Pears: Merrylegs, Red Hourse, Moorecroft, Painted Lady, & Thorn
Availability: Nationally where Winesellers, LTD products are sold.
Disclosure: This cider was submitted to me for review by their importer: Winesellers, LTD.