Grapes are not the Only Fruit

Grapes are Not the Only Fruit.
(With apologies to Jeannette Winterson.)

 

Domaine Cidricole
'Cinq Autels' Brut Cider
Pet Nat



Only $19 for 1. Buy here.
Only $17 for 6. Buy here.
And only $15 by the case! Buy here!


TL; DR: Ever want a grapebreak? Ever crave a crushable sparkler that weighs in at only 5.5% ABV... but is every bit as delicious as your fave pet nat? Ever wonder if there's more to Normandy than D-Day? Ever want the best single deal on no-sulfur-added, biodynamic bubbles we'll likely offer all year? Maybe it's high time you let a Norman conquer you!



With over 450 wine appellations in France, sometimes it seems like every son and his mother has an AOC in their backyard (Oui, oui, ça c'est Côte de Grandpa...). So when there's a region in France that's not planted to vines? And it's a place with the same world-beating terroir as Champagne and Burgundy? You know something else amazing must be happening.

Indeed, the Normans long ago realized there was another route to delight besides the vinous one: les pommes. While there's evidence of ancient viticulture in the region, the land in Normandy has been planted to apple orchards since at least the 700's 
(not a typo), and there are over 800 (again: not a typo!) apple varieties in the region, most with impossible-to-resist names like "Belle de Boskoop" and "Reine des Reinettes." Add to that that this land was covered in ocean 60 million years ago (and thus has the same chalky limestone soils that make Burgundy's Côte de Nuits so miraculous), and it's no wonder that France's best cidermakers will tell you that terroir counts just as much here as it does in their poor, apple-less Burgundian cousins' turf!


Autumn in the orchards of Normandy

Speaking of France's best, we'd like to introduce you to the Norman wonderment of Domaine des Cinq Autels, one of our most feverish new faves. Fourth-generation cidermaker Jean-Rene Pitrou grows over 15 types of apples, planted on 20 or so acres of gorgeous orchardland. He specially selects varieties to yield peak cider delight: two thirds are picked for their bittersweet qualities, 15% for  "sharpness and zestiness," and the last bits for what Jean-Rene grows describes as their ‘tangy’ qualities. The estate's been organic since 1967, and now practices biodynamic farming, and it's working toward a goal of carbon neutrality in this decade.

And how's the cider? Scrumptious enough to forget about grapes for a weekend or two! Aromas of honey, acacia, pine needles, and ripe pineapple hum in harmony. Round in the mouth with perfect balance: a kiss of sweetness and a zap of acidity. Low ABV (5.5%), zero sulfur additions, and a gentle fizz make this the perfect day-drinker... but it's equally good on the table with light bites, quiches, or this honey-and-lemon-glazed roast chicken that we did with it recently.

So cheat on grapes — your secret's safe with us — and enter into an affair with one of our favorite new sparklers in the shop!


Domaine Cidricole
'Cinq Autels' Brut Cider
Pet Nat

(*zero sulfur added)

Only $19 for 1. Buy here.
Only $17 for 6. Buy here.
And only $15 by the case! Buy here!


(This is the best price on this in the US!)