The North American importer and distributor of cider James Asbel comments in an article how our traditional beverage is appreciated in his country.
THE CIDER.- James Asbel is the maker of ‘Ciders of Spain’, an online space for cider importation and distribution. In the web can be found a wide range of Asturian traditional and new expression ciders. For his career Asbel has turned ot be a good knower of our homeland beverage and thus he offers an explanation about how cider is appreciated in the USA.
“When North Americans taste traditional cider, they describe it as “funky”. Why? Good answer. This word is not very oenologic, to say. It expresses the scent of malolactic fermentation. We should highlight that “funky” means also a smell of an animal or sweat. The alternative to this description is “horse blanket”. This word is the most official about organoleptic features. Personally I like it, it’s a positive one. It reminds me of the first cider gulp years ago. A remembrance to the soft touch of a horse snout).
The word ‘funky’ conveys an inter-cultural element we are used to while selling cider. The smell is not familiar at all for North Americans and is strange in the culinary scene. That’s why it poses a challenge to introduce natural cider. We have to say that as novely it catches the attention of adventurers that speak proudly about how they love it. And the fashion word is precisely “funky”. However they use it both for the malolactic smell and for the one given by the fungi brettanomyces (fungi involved in beer making) aso in growing tend for the Belgian beers or Belgian Sours. And this is why we have to explain tha cider has nothing to do with the brettanomyces’.
As wider cultural note, the word “funk” comes from the 60’s and 70’s. This is a popular music style first begun by afroamerican citizens. This word was given by the musicians themselves. This idea can be trnaslated to the term “salsa”, the one given to the condiments or ingredients that give it a richer cultural mixture. So funky has a well positive connotations: a nice beverage fruit of a deep popular art.