Friday, October 8, 2010

Wine of the Week - Bellwether Black Magic

Autumn is here, and the harvest is in; at Wine of the Week, that means checking out more apple cider wines. Last year, I sampled some ciders for the first time and found the tastes similar to white wine and champagne. (Click here to read.) This year, I'm going to try three more varieties plus a Halloween bonus, the latter of which is today's selection.


With its blood red color and festive flavor, Black Magic is Bellwether's offering for the Halloween season. The special ingredient is blackcurrants. Blackcurrant growth was banned in the U.S. in the early 1900s to help curb the spread of cronartium ribicola, which is not, in fact, a spell from the Harry Potter books but actually a fungus that was threatening the lumber industry. The ban was lifted in the 1960s, and blackcurrant is slowly making a comeback in the U.S.

The blackcurrant effect on Black Magic is immediately apparent. While most of the ciders I've tasted are dry and subtle, Black Magic is tart and tangy with a sour candy aftertaste; the perfect "candy" for the adults at the Halloween party. (And at only 5.2% alcohol, the adults won't have to worry about embarrassing themselves in front of the kids.)

I can enthusiastically recommend this wine for a fun, informal gathering. Still plenty of time to order some for this Halloween season.

1 comment:

  1. You sure that's not a Harry Potter spell? CRONARTIUM RIBICOLA and bam! Fungus grows all over you.