Flavor Profile: Medium acidity, high sweetness
Tasting Notes: Sweet, syrupy; like an aged balsamic, but more complex. Fresh apple, hard cider, and smokey, applewood flavors.
Kitchen Pairings: Drizzle on literally anything (that you intend to eat)
Bar Pairings: Use this a bit like an apple shrub; with bourbon, whiskey, mezcal, tequila, vodka, the list goes on and on. Makes a hell of a mulled cider!
The Idea: Applejack is traditionally an American spirit made by freeze-distilling a hard cider; basically freezing the liquid and allowing only the first 15-25% of the liquid to thaw, containing the majority of the alcohol. Fun fact: the same principle applies to vinegar - with the acetic acid, residual sugars and aromatics thawing first. While the yield is minuscule (50 gallons only yields 7.5 gallons of finished vinegar), the result is so worth it.
The Applejack Vinegar is vastly more syrupy than our other vinegars and can be used the same way an aged balsamic vinegar would be, with one distinct advantage; the flavors here are much more complex, pronounced, and versatile. Rather than having an overpowering balsamic, you have a smooth, versatile, thick vinegar that works just about anywhere you can think of.
About Our Applejack Vinegar:
The texture of an aged balsamic is hard to beat, so we decided to approximate it with one of the crops that Virginia does exceptionally well—heirloom apples!
The name Applejack refers to the process of ice filtration—freezing the liquid to extract only the residual sugars, acids, and aromatics while leaving the water frozen—that is associated with the traditional spirit of Applejack. We apply this to an apple cider vinegar and apple caramel we blend together and age on toasted applewood before ice filtering and bottling.
The texture here is syrupy but, in my opinion, with more depth than a traditional aged balsamic. It’s fruity and smokey, with wood and caramel elements that make for an excellent flavor profile drizzled over fruit, gourds, game, pork, and anywhere else you might use an aged balsamic.