Vendor Spotlight: Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse
How large are your orchards, and how many varieties of apples do you grow?
We have a 10-acre property that holds a four-acre Certified Organic Orchard nestled in the Saanich Peninsula on southern Vancouver Island. We currently have 1500 apple trees that produce 50+ heritage
varietals. We also lease an orchard in the Similkameen Valley – a region known for growing high-quality, organic produce.
How do cider apples differ from snacking or baking apples?
Any apple can be used to make cider, but the types of apples used will drastically affect the taste of the cider. We choose to use traditional heirloom varietals because of the low sugar, and high tannins, which helps to impart complexity to the cider. Cider apples are traditionally known as ‘spitters’, this is because once you take a bite, you just want to spit it out!
How many varieties of cider do you sell? How often do you introduce new flavours, and where does the inspiration come from for new creations?
We produce 15 sparkling ciders throughout the year and 3 fortified ciders. We produce our “core four” – Bramble Bubbly, Kings & Spies, Pippins and Rumrunner – multiple times a year and 11 ciders on a seasonal basis. We produce four different series of ciders and they are the inspiration for the ciders within the series: Heirloom Series, Canadian Invasion Series, Barrel Series and Sticky Series – each providing the inspiration for the ciders from traditional cider-making methods and what is seasonally available.
What do you like most about selling at farmers markets?
We like to participate in farmers markets to help support local growers and to bring awareness to the craft cider community. We believe that cider is for celebrating and is worth celebrating and we want to be able to share that mindset with our community!
Why is supporting local important to you?
Supporting our community and the support we have received from our community has been fundamental to our success. We crowd source thousands of apples each year from local farmers and these farmers have a big part in helping us produce our award winning ciders.