Category Archives: Wonderful World of Cider

The Pagan Rite WASSAIL! Brown, Bradshaw and World’s Best Ciders.

In their extremely useful guide World’s Best Ciders: Taste, Tradition and Terroir, Pete Brown and Bill Bradshaw devote a few pages to explore Wassail traditions and celebrations. (The UK cover -pictured- even features the image of a torch-lit wassail).

WBC UK cover

According to Brown & Bradshaw:

“Like all the best traditions, the ritual of wassail is rooted in the past but allows every community to imposes it’s own stamp. It’s growing in popularity because it is an unmediated, unbranded entertainment that links us back to the land and the passing of the seasons.”

Celebrate Wassail: Grab a copy of World’s Best Ciders, pour a glass of cider or mug of wassail, and explore Wassail traditions past and present.

For more of Bill Bradshaw’s Wassail imagery visit IAMCIDER: iamcider.blogspot.com

Sterling Publishing www.sterlingpublishing.com

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A Bit About Wassailing.

The Wassail (Charles Rennie Mackintosh)About Wassailing From the National Association of Cider Makers:

“Wassailing is the chief custom associated with cider apple trees. The word wassail is derived from the Anglo Saxon ‘wes hal’ meaning ‘good health’ or ‘be whole’. The earliest written records of wassailing date from the late 17th century.

This custom is performed to protect the trees from evil spirits and to make them bear a plentiful crop and is still carried out in the West of England. The rite involves five main elements: gathering around an apple tree, singing the Wassailing song, pouring cider over the tree’s roots, loud noises and a toast.

The pouring of cider over the roots symbolised the carrying forward of the life juice of the tree from one year to the next. It was also the custom to place a cider-soaked piece of toasted bread in the fork of the tree to attract good spirits while guns were fired into the trees so as to frighten away the evil spirits. The health of the tree would then be drunk as often as was felt necessary. Nowadays, it is traditional to hold the rite on Twelfth Night.

Over time, the custom was adapted and added to, so that each area had its own variation. The date for instance varied, and old tea kettles and tin trays might be clattered together to scare away the spirits instead of firing guns. In Herefordshire it was traditional for Morris Men to take part by dancing around the trees.”

Source: National Association of Cider Makers.

Link: www.cideruk.com

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Cider Ireland. Then and Now: AppleFest. Slow Food Apple and Craft Cider Festival.

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1911 Encyclopedia Britannica:

Cider used to be made in the south of Ireland, but the industry had almost become extinct until revived by the Department of Agriculture, which in 1904 erected a cider-making plant at Drogheda, Co. Louth, gave assistance to private firms at Dungarvan, Co. Waterford, and Fermoy, Co. Cork, and provided a traveling mill and press to work in the South Riding of Co. Tipperary. The results have been highly satisfactory, a large quantity of good cider having been produced.

Source: 1911 Encyclopedia Brittannica. The eleventh edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica, first published in 1911

Entry: Cider

Find an online version at archive.org

CIDER IRELAND 2013

From the Cider Ireland website:

Cider Ireland is a group of like-minded apple growers and cider makers from the island of Ireland.

As a group we can promise you that we are owner operators who only make cider from 100% Irish grown apples, that the cider we produce is made from the juice of pressed apples, never, ever from concentrate, and we don’t add colourants.

Read about Redefining Irish Cider

Slow Food Ireland Celebrating AppleFest 

21st – 22nd, September 2013

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First Look: World’s Best Ciders: Taste, Tradition and Terroir. What We’re Reading.

9781454907886_p0_v1_s600

Authors: Pete Brown and Bill Bradshaw

Publisher: Sterling Epicure

Published: October 2013
256 pages
ISBN: 1-4549-0788-6
ISBN13: 9781454907886

Lucky to get an advance copy of World’s Best Ciders: Taste, Tradition and Terroir  (US/Can version) –  we are hunkering down with a craft cider for a good read and will report back with more detailed comments soon.

First impressions:

Hard bound and extensively illustrated with color photographs.

World’s Best Cider explores contemporary cider in the context of cider history, regional terroir, and local cider traditions. Authors Pete Brown and Bill Bradshaw examine world ciders by country, provide cider recommendations and tasting notes, and include profiles of several influential cider artisans responsible for crafting some of the world’s best ciders.

Pre-order a copy now via Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

http://www.sterlingpublishing.com

Available for purchase October 2103 at your local bookseller, including these sellers who carry books by Sterling Publishing:

In the USA

Hastings
Northshire Bookstore
Powells
University of Washington’s Bookstore
Tower.com

In Canada

Chapters Indigo
Vancouver Kidsbooks

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What We’re Reading: CIDERLAND by James Crowden

CIDERLAND by James Crowden

Meet the West County’s cider makers in this informative read. A great introduction to the world of South West England’s traditional West County cider culture, with numerous in-depth profiles of the regions cider makers.

www.james-crowden.co.uk

www.birlinn.co.uk

“Ciderland includes comprehensive summaries and descriptions of every cider and cider producer in the West Country and covers topics such as cider folk traditions and remedies, placing cider making firmly within the local culture. Photographs by Claire Lloyd Davies.”

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Cider Ireland: Real Irish Craft Cider Makers

Cider Ireland

“Cider Ireland is a group of artisan Irish cider producers, making cider from Irish grown apples. It’s all about the apple.

Cider Ireland is a trade association for makers of what we consider to be Real Irish Craft Cider. We have a collective and sincere interest in the quality and integrity of the final product.”

A Brief History of Apples and Cidermaking in Ireland by Mark Jenkinson, September 2012

“Apples in Ireland Apples are an integral part of Irish culture and history and are first recorded from pips found at an archaeological excavation in Co. Meath and carbon dated to over 5000 years ago.

Cidermaking in Ireland For various historical reasons it is thought that cidermaking in Ireland stretches back at least 2000 years if not much further.”

Read the full article A Brief History of Apples and Cidermaking in Ireland at Cider Ireland

Irish cider makers and members of Cider Ireland:

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Armagh Cider Company

Ballinteggart House, Drumnasoo Road, Portadown, Co. Armagh

Twitter: @armaghcider


Craigie’s Cider

Ballyhook Farm, Grange Con, Co. Wicklow

Twitter: @CraigiesCider

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Highbank Proper Cider

Highbank Orchards, Highbank Organic Farm, Cuffesgrange, Co. Kilkenny

Twitter: @highbankorchard

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Longueville House Cider 

Mallow, Co. Cork.

Twitter: @Longuevillecork

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Llewelyns

Quickpenny Road, Lusk, Co Dublin

Twitter: @DavidsOrchard

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Mac’s Armagh Cider

Sean McAtee, Forest Road, Forkhill, Co. Armagh

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Mac Ivors Cider Co.

Ardress East, Portadown, Co. Armagh

Twitter: @MacIvorsCider

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Stonewell Cider

The Turrets, Nohoval, Belgooly, Kinsale, Co. Cork.

Twitter: @StonewellCider

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Tempted? Irish Craft Cider

2 Agars Road, Lisburn, Co. Down

Twitter: @TemptedCider

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The Apple Farm

Moorstown, Cahir, Co. Tipperary

Twitter: @theapplefarmer

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Toby’s Handcrafted Armagh Cider

Twitter: @TobysCider

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Images and maker information from Cider Ireland – visit the website for more maker information.

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Cider Mapping the World: The World Map of Cider

Mapping world cider activity: The World Map of Cider

Created by Eric West, Certified Cicerone, BJCP judge, and the man behind Cider Guide, The world guide to cider, perry, and related drinks website. Look for the upcoming The Cider Guide To North America, slated for publication sometime in 2013.

The World Map of Cider is an ongoing effort and is updated regularly.

The map markers are divided into (9) categories:

Cidery  Winery  Brewery/Meadery
Ice Cidery  Distillery
Bar/Pub  Bottle Shop  Orchard/Museum/Other POI
Event/Festival

Last updated: January 31, 2013

To make additions to the map: Please send your feedback to map {AT} ciderguide {DOT} com!

TheWorldMapofCider

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Cider Mapping the United States & Canada: The North American Cider Map Project

Mapping North American cider activity: The North American Cider Map Project.

Created by David White, virtual orchard keep at the Oldtimecider.com website, current President of NWCA, The Northwest Cider Association, and co-owner of Whitewood Cider Co.”Handcrafted in Olympia, Washington” fame.

The North American Cider Map Project is an ongoing effort and is updated regularly. The map markers are currently divided into (4) categories:

Red Markers: Cider Producers. Green Markers: Stores that sells cider. Yellow Markers: Establishments or bars that serve traditional craft cider. Blue Markers: Cider Education Resources

The North American Cider Map Project also includes an alphabetical listing of cider makers and resources flagged on the map.

Last updated: January 24, 2013

To make additions to the map contact Oldtimecider.com

NACMap

 

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Cider52: World Cider: Sarasola Sagardoa, Isastegi Sagardo, Maley Cidre du St Bernard Cidro

Cider52: A Cider A Week. The plan: 52 weeks, 52 cider tastings, pairings, reviews, and postings.

We are focusing on American craft cider, but will continue to explore world ciders as well. Next up for February/March 2013 :

From Spain and  The Basque Country:

Sarasola Sagardoa, Astigarraga, Basque Country, Spain

Isastegi Sagardo, Basque Country, Spain

And from Italy:

Maley Cidre du St Bernard Cidro from the Valle d’Aosta region. Apples used in this cider are from Italian AND French orchards.

Tasting notes and pairings to follow.

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North American Cider, Perry & Ice Wine Associations & Organizations

Trained&PrunedAppleTree

A Listing of North American Cider, Perry & Ice Wine Associations & Organizations.

Last updated January 24, 2013.

Visit the websites for detailed information about members, membership, products, and events.

Cidre du Québec / Les Cidriculteurs artisans du Québec  CAQ “The goal of the Association of Independent Cider Producers of Québec (CAQ) is to defend the interests of cider producers and the Québec cider-producing sector. Visit our cider mills. The workers will be happy to let you in on the secret of how they bottle all that flavour.”                    
Province/Region: Québec, Canada                                                                                
Members: 47 makers listed

Great Lakes Cider & Perry Association GLCPA “The Great Lakes Cider & Perry Association (GLCPA) is a nonprofit organization formed to showcase and promote fermented apple and pear beverages and to help educate consumers and producers about them. Our members include both commercial and non-commercial producers, as well as affiliate members located outside the region. Come join us at one of our events and discover some of the finest North American ciders and perries!”
State/Region: Great Lakes Region: Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Ontario.
Members/Listings: Currently include 59 commercial cider makers listed in the GLCPA Directory

Hudson Valley Cider Alliance  “We are working to establish hard cider and apple spirits as signature products of this historic apple region. We are apple growers, cider makers, and distillers who believe that these products will fulfill the potential of the Hudson Valley as a cider region.”
State/Region: New York, Hudson Valley Region                                                                
Members: Currently includes: apple growers, cider makers, and distillers
 
Northwest Cider Association NWCA  “The Northwest Cider Association is a trade organization formed by cider producers throughout the Pacific Northwest in order to promote awareness of regional artisanal ciders among the public. The organization has sponsored classes and events, and created new cider-themed events, including an annual cider maker’s dinner, the Northwest Cider Festival, and Northwest Cider Week, a shared promotion of cider-themed menus, pairings and tasting events at numerous restaurants and retailers.
States/Region: Northwest: Oregon, Washington, Montana, and Canada                                        
Members: Currently includes 20 commercial cider makers
 
Ontario Craft Cider Association OCCA “We are in the midst of cider revolution and in 2012, Ontario`s cider producers formed the Ontario Craft Cider Association (OCCA) to ensure that local cider producers exceed consumers cider expectations and to educate the public about the incredible tastes, versatility and complexities of cider.  Membership is open to all Cider and Perry producers in Ontario and associate memberships are open to all.” 
Province/Region: Ontario, Canada                                                                                
Members: currently 13 makers listed
 
Rocky Mountain Cider Association  RMCA “The Rocky Mountain Cider Association (RMCA) is an organization of commercial producers of (hard) cider and perry in the Rocky Mountain region: Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, and New Mexico. Our goals are to promote the understanding and appreciation of quality cider in our region, to help producers and suppliers find one another and work together for common goals, and coördinate events to develop the craft cider industry in our region.”
State/Region: Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, and New Mexico
Members: Commercial cider makers list pending
 
Vermont Ice Cider Association  “Ice Cider is a delicious and sophisticated sweet wine made from apples using natural cold weather to concentrate the flavors and the sugars of the fruit before fermentation. Originally developed in Southern Quebec, it has a remarkable complexity and balance that is usually associated with fine dessert wines.  Ice Cider is becoming recognized as a premier North American specialty.”                                                        
State/Region: Vermont                                                                                  
Members: Currently includes 6 commercial ice cider makers
 
Descriptive information quoted is from the specific organization’s websites.

Please leave a comment if you have North American cider association resources to add.

 
 
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