Update 22/11/2017: In the coming weeks everybody is welcome at Fontebona to join us for a couple of hours in the cider making process. No charge. But do let us know when you think you will visit us, please.
Sidra natural from Fontebona, Asturias, Spain
We are Astrid and Thomas, Dutchmen who moved to Asturias, northwest Spain in 2007 to start a simpler life at Fontebona. More than ten years ago we knew absolutely nothing about cider but since 2007 we make our own sidra natural. The apples we use are biological and typically come from our own orchard. At the time we started with the help of a neighbour. We are getting pleasantly surprised reactions from Asturians since then. That they like our cider so much. A big compliment in a region where they drink more cider than beer or wine.
The apples we use are official cider apple varieties and carry names like Xuanina, Coloradona, Carrio, Durona de Tresali, Raxao, Teorica, Verdialona, Clara, Perico and Regona. Some species are sweet, others sour or even bitter. A good asturian cider has the right mix of these different tastes. Our production process consists of pure manual labour. We use no additives at all. Not even the teaspoonful of sugar so often used in Asturias for getting bubbles. Eventually we have a sidra natural with an alcohol percentage between 4.5 en 7.5
We will make cider again at Fontebona beginning November 2017. A week long you can participate in many aspects of the cider process: harvesting, cleaning, pressing, (explanation about) bottling, etc. We will visit the cider museum, a cider bodega and a fellow-cider maker. Also we will give a theoretical explanation and let you taste what the regional kitchen does with cider. The programme below is an indication of what you can expect during the process of making cider. We will decide from day to day if we do an other pressing or if we continue with a new load of apples. The visits will take place according to plan as much as possible, unless there are practical reasons to swap or shift certain visits.
Together with Astrid and Thonas you will stay in a Casa Rural near Fontebona. From personal experience we know that the best stories arise at the end of the day, while enjoying a good glass of cider. Or two.
Day 1, Friday 3rd of November 2017: arrival, guided tour at Fontebona, acclimatize in Casa Rural
Day 2, Saturday 4th of November 2017: explanation (theory and practise) of the cider process at Fontebona, picking apples in the Donkey Paradise, lunch included
Day 3, Sunday 5th of November 2017: apple selection and washing at Fontebona, Muséu del Pueblu d'Asturies in Gijón
Day 4, Monday 6th of November 2017: bruising apples at Fontebona, edible walk from Fontebona
Day 5, Tuesday 7th of November 2017: first pressing at Fontebona, cider museum Nava
Day 6, Wednesday 8th of November 2017: second pressing at Fontebona, visiting a fellow-cider maker
Day 7, Thursday 9th of November 2017: third pressing or new bruising at Fontebona, cider tasting at cider bodega, cider tasting with several ciders at the last night in the Casa Rural
Day 8, Friday 10th of November 2017: departure
Programme takes place with minimally 2 persons, maximally 6 persons, € 700,- per person.
Including transfer from/to the airport Loiu near Bilbao to Fontebona, stay in Casa Rural near Fontebona, breakfast, simple supper, daily transport, entrance fees, 1x lunch at Donkey Praradise
Excluding lunch (which is the main meal in Spain, day menu usually is less than € 15.-), journey from your place to Bilbao vv, extra food and drink at Fontebona or elsewhere, travel insurance
Arrival Friday 3rd of November 2017. 11:55 Brussels (BRU) - 13:45 Bilbao (BIO) Brussels Airlines SN3713
Departure Friday 10th of November 2017. 13:25 Bilbao (BIO) - 15:15 Brussels (BRU) Brussels Airlines SN3714
Questions? Please contact Astrid and Thomas:
http://www.fontebona.es/en/contacto.php of mobiel (+34)722217451