how it's made...
We often boast about using centuries-old European cyder-making traditions to produce our premium cyder, but what does that REALLY mean?
Even though cider has been around since the time of Julius Caesar and the Romans, the way it is produced has changed through the ages. Here at Duntroon, we pride ourselves on staying true to the traditional way of production, with no added sugar or preservatives and a lot of patience.
The main process of cider-making consists of: Harvesting–> cleaning–> pressing–> fermenting–> aging–> packaging.
Appley Ever After
Here on the farm, we grow over 10 different species of apples, all of which are Ontario Heritage (Mac, Empire, Spy, Snow, Gala, Liberty, etc.) or specific for cyder making.
Harvesting happens in early fall and can happen over a two month span depending on the weather and how quickly (or slowly) the apples ripen. It’s important to pick the apples at the precise starch to sugar ratio for perfect juiciness!
We hand pick all of our orchards as hand-picking allows us to inspect each tree and apple to ensure premium quality. Our cyder is made up of about 80% juice from our apples and 20% from partnering orchards within a 15km radius.
From tree to glass
The Production Process
After harvest, apples are washed and ground to go to press. Using a hydraulic rack & cloth press, the apple pulp is spread through a series of plates and put under pressure to eject all of its delicate juices. The leftover pomace is set aside for reuse (see our sustainability practices for details) and the process begins again with another batch!
After press, it’s time for fermentation. This process is not so different from wine or beer where yeast is added to the filtered juice blend and then monitored for temperature and activity. Depending on multiple factors, including the type of yeast, temperature and amount of fermentation time, the fermented product will have different looks, tastes and alcohol volume. All of our cyders are slow fermented at cooler temperatures as opposed to fast fermented at hotter temperatures to stay in line with our traditional methods.
After fermenting, the cyder is aged to perfection. This can take anywhere from 6 months to a year or longer! Our longest aged product takes up to a year to reach its prime state.
Finally, the ready juice is packaged and pasteurized. The act of pasteurizing is quite unique and not practiced often in the wine & spirit world. This allows us to stay true to our promise of producing premium cyder with no added ingredients and preservatives, such as sulphites.
Yours to Enjoy!
And there you have it, the total journey from apple to cyder!
Our promise to you is a truly natural, centuries authentic, premium cyder experience that you can share and enjoy.
For more information about each of our cyders, click here.