Sidra Rules

Sidra (cider) is a big deal in Northern Spain, and Asturias lays claim to 80% of all Spanish cider production – it has the climate to suit it. And its people have the appetite to match it – the average Asturian consumes roughly 50 litres per annum.

Cider-making is an age-old tradition here – it’s part of Asturias’ Celtic identity – but became a larger-scale industry from the mid-19th century onwards. Naturally fermented, with no added sugar or sweeteners, it has a distinctly dry taste.

Llanes, Porrúa, Asturias, Celtic, beaches, playas, Playa de Andrín, Andrín, Spain, España, holidays, Northern Spain, Cantabria, Picos de Europa, family travel, kids, travel, cider, sidra, escanciar, trabanco, Atlantic, sea, seaside, la sierra de cuera, Playa de Palombina, Celorio, bolo palma, la bolero, bar la bolera
Sidra in Porrúa

The way to enjoy this still and cloudy amber drink takes some practice. One person pours just a small amount of cider from above head-height into a thin-glassed tumbler (this method is called escanciar). The idea is to aerate the liquid to bring out its taste, plus add some fizz. The floor receives a good dousing too.

A thin glass is supposed to oxidise the sidra (a notion competitively disagreed with by cider-drinkers of the Basque country).

The pourer passes the glass to his or her neighbour, who immediately gulps down the sidra in one swift mouthful, leaving a little to tip out onto the ground (some believe this is a Celtic tradition of giving back to the earth). The glass is refilled and then offered to the next person. It’s a wonderful way to share an ancient drink.

We tried escanciar – and failed.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

But we know that this is how it should be done.

There are many detailed and authoritative articles on Asturian cider if you’d like to learn more, but nothing beats sampling it (after a try at escanciar ) for yourself.

 

 

 

Advertisements

One thought on “Sidra Rules

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s