Brewpublic’s Marc Demeule makes his annual pilgrimage to Le Mondial des Cidres de Glace, a spectacular display of ice ciders amidst the cold Quebec winter.
The organizers of the event did well for the 3rd edition of Le Mondial des Cidres de Glace. A more spacious and wind-resistant tent has been installed. Even if we had a feeling of -13°C ( 8º F ) outside, it was quite comfortable. I’ve described the development process of the ice cider in my last year’s post.
Close to twenty different producers attempt to the Mondial. Most of them were there in the past editions, but we see new producers every year. To be really objective, we decided to taste every product, which resume in ± 40 different ice ciders. It brings me the following conclusions:
– Two distinct tastes can be felt, depending of the development process. Ice cider made from apple juice or apples frozen to supply the production schedule will give products with a major apple mouth feel taste, a light touch of acidity and a taste of sweet sugar. I do prefer this style of ice cider.
– The other category of ice ciders, crafted from frozen apples harvested in the trees in January and also the barrel-aged ice ciders will develop more complex tastes, and are slightly more liquorous.
Producers are still developing their actual recipes and new products. Like the brewers, they use apple blends and different yeasts to create ice ciders with flavours like pineapples and citrus. Another product I discovered is the pear ice cider (poire de glace). Like beer, it seems that the potential for the ice cider is unlimited.
Here are the products we liked the most. Please ask them at your preferred liquor store.
Vergers Philion – Friga
Val Caudalies – Réserve d’Éole
Antolino Brongo – Cryomalus
Domaine Lafrance – Cuvée spéciale
La Face Cachée de la Pomme – Neige réserve
As homebrewers, we decided to develop our own ice cider recipe for the first year. I’ll talk of it later, especially if we have good results. I wish we will.