Isastegi Basque Cider
Region: Tolosa, Euskal Sagardoa, Spain
A truly natural expression of Basque cider. Composed of 12 varietals of native Basque apples, the pressed juice undergoes fermentation by native yeasts, and is bottled without any sulfur whatsoever. This cider is unfined, unfiltered, and lightly effervescent. It comes with a special pourer with a built in aerator that mimics the Basque art of pouring one's cider from many feet away from the glass (thus refreshing its delicate bubbles).
Cider has been produced at the Isastegi farm since the 17th century. Cider is an integral part of the Basque culture, where it is an everyday drink. Isastegi farms their orchards organically, growing ancient, heirloom Basque apple varietals nearly lost to time. Unlike commercial Basque ciders, Isastegi relies solely upon their own apples for their cider, never purchasing apple concentrate to increase their production yields.
Every spring visitors and locals gather at Isastegi to celebrate Txotx (spring tasting) season by tasting the new vintage of cider while enjoying the traditional cider house meal of codfish omelette, fried cod with piquillo peppers, steak, walnuts, quince jelly, and Idiazabal cheese. Txotx!