Exceptional Ciders to Discover During Cider Week
The cider industry has been growing at a fast pace and even has been knowing a renaissance over the last few years in Quebec, and especially in this region. As one of the oldest alcohol beverages in the world, cider can be effervescent, bubbly, calm, ice or fire formulated, to deliciously accompany you at different times and events.
Why not take advantage of Cider Week, from May 6 to 16, to experience a festive spring and showcase our region’s cider in our glasses!
Established in the heart of the Route des vins, the Union Libre cider house offers a vast selection of products and pleasing flavours to discover. With its modern vision of the terroir, the cidery, located in Dunham, was the first to produce an unctuous and amazing fire cider, created by concentrating the aromas of apple sugars by boiling its juices.
For beer amateurs, a hopped cider tasting will surely surprise you with its freshness and its citrusy final notes. A gluten-free product, it can deliciously accompany your picnic, your cocktails and any pizza toppings.
With its exceptional panorama, Val Caudalies is a vineyard and cider house to discover in Dunham. Their festive sparkling cider with its terroir raspberry aromas is an absolute must.
Their 10-year aperitif cider is an irresistible, much sought-after, product, with hints of prune, butterscotch and delicate spice aromas; To be kept for a special occasion … or not.
Christian Barthomeuf was a pioneer of modern winemaking in Quebec. He also created the first ice cider in 1989 and founded, with Louise Dupuis, Clos de Saragnat in Frelighsburg, in the spring of 2003.
The establishment offers several varieties of organic ciders, among them, Cidre Avalanche, their classic, a dark yellow ice cider with brown sugar, honey and peach syrup aromas. Tasted slowly, it is a true pleasure for the palate.
For avid amateurs of new discoveries, the Clos de Saragnat offers organic farm ciders. Very trendy, with an often more pronounced and more bitter taste, bottles quickly disappear from their shelves!
We don’t need to introduce you to the Domaine Pinnacle’s ice cider which has made a name for itself all around the world. Take advantage of your visit and drop by the boutique’s interpretation centre to learn more about this wonderful product. Then, enjoy the view as you relax on their terrace while savouring their sparkling ice cider with its bubbles toning down its sugar flavours.
Other Cideries Well Worth the Detour
These cider producers don’t have onsite boutiques to welcome you, but their products are well worth being discovered. We can find them mostly in the region’s grocery stores and restaurants. Some of them even offer a farm pick-up service.
This “hyperactive cidery” founded by Julien Niquet and Justine Therrien (Glutenberg, brasserie Hochelag, Maison Joy Hill) isn’t located in Alma, but right here, in Frelighsburg. Taking a distance from conventional ciders, their products have become the trend lately. Their Assemblage bleu is elaborated through a maceration of Blaufränkisch grapes from their own vineyard and Gala apple juice in spontaneous fermentation. There’s also their Wild Wild Est, a hard cider elaborated with wild apples picked in different locations throughout Quebec depending on the cuvées.
Their family domain spreads out between Frelighsburg and Dunham. Here, using his own hand-picked apples, Gabriel Choinière creates these unique and organic farmhouse ciders with native wild yeasts, and without adding any sulfites. Along with the cidery’s more conventionally made cuvées such as Armandie, developed with a blend of traditional apples, we also discover special cuvées such as the Cidre Nouveau, elaborated with the first apples of the season.
The first cider produced by Équinoxe, the latest newcomer to the region’s cider industry, will come out in 2021. However, you can already enjoy their fresh apple juice and other apple-based products (compotes, jellies) at their farm stand, as well as other fruits and vegetables. Self-picking is also possible here.
Enjoy your tastings!