Rebello CEOs Ruth and Matt Gallace
Lychee, chilli, mint and blood orange are ingredients often found in cocktails, however one Australian cider house has decided to add these flavours and more to its latest range of ciders.
With Melbourne arguably leading the way in urban street food, it was only fitting for local cider house Cheeky Rascal to launch small batches of ciders to pair with thepopularcuisine.
There are ciders to match many casual dining cuisines, from a Vietnamese cider of Strawberry, Lychee and Apple, to Nashi Cider perfectly matched with Japanese; Apple Lime Mint with Chilli inspired by Mexican, Plum Ginger Pear for Chinese and Blood Orange Lemoncello Pear to partner with Italian.
Ruth Gallace, CEO of Cheeky Rascal founder Rebello Wines, saysthe idea came to her in an unconventional way.
“I was sitting in a little cocktail bar one day having a Caprioska and the mixologist threw in a bit of chilli – and it really got me thinking about how we could play around with our cider, and how it would be a perfect match with some really great street food.”
Gallace says the way street food is made, paying homage to its heritage but using fresh local ingredients is entirely reflective of Cheeky Rascal’s own philosophy, coupling traditional Italian winemaking techniques handed down over generations with their own innovative approach.
“We got together with our senior cider maker and spent hours playing around with some ingredients, tasting and experimenting, before we found just the right combination of flavours. We wanted to create something fresh and vibrant, which brings people together… a quality cider, but one that is created for that casual last minute dining experience.”
She says the cider house was reminiscent of a scene from Masterchef with pears and apples combined with chilli, plum and ginger and mint leaves scattered around. The results have not only exceeded their expectations, but excited local eateries.
“Cider and craft beer have emerged as a surprising category in complementing street food and the two movements are really coming together. Authentic eateries are now seeing how they are really adding to the flavour and experience, and are excited about the concept of having a cider to specifically pair with their food.”
The seasonal series will kick off with Cheeky Rascal ‘Mexican’ and ‘Italian’ in premium liquor outlets nationwide, and Vietnamese in some localised eateries from next month.