Wood Aged Ciders are barrel-fermented or barrel-aged Standard Ciders in which the wood and/or barrel character is a notable part of the overall flavor profile. Cubes, chips, spirals, staves, and other alternatives may be used in place of barrels.
Use of newer wood that has not reached a flavor‐neutral condition, either as storage vessels or as batch additions such as wood chips, is now generally considered to be a stylistic option for adding to the complexity of the flavor of a cider or perry and an added element to mouthfeel.
If the wood holds the flavor of another liquid (beer, wine, spirits) or another flavored substance with which it has been in contact, or if wood is used in conjunction with another liquid or flavored substance to produce the same effect, then this is an appropriate category for such cider.
There is a wide continuum of intensity of flavor based on proportion of wood used to the cider and previous use of the wood. There may also be significant subtlety in flavors in a base cider. Consequently, subtlety of wood and/or beer/wine/spirit notes will not be regarded as a fault provided they are detectable, recognizable, and balanced well with the base cider.
The cider character must always be present, and must fit with wood/barrel character.
Clear to brilliant. Color should be that of a Standard Cider unless wood/barrel character is expected to contribute color.
Average body, may show tannic (astringent) or heavy body as determined by wood/barrel character.
Entrants must indicate what flavor notes (oak, whiskey, rum, etc.) judges should expect in the Additional Information section.
ABV: 5 – 12%