Bottle of cider with organic apples on the strawBottle of cider with organic apples on the straw
©Bottle of cider with organic apples on the straw|Philipimage -


Everything there is to know about Normandy cider

Normandy cider is a sparkling drink made by fermenting apple juice. Refreshing and easy to drink, Normandy cider is a traditional brew with a protected geographical indication.

How Normandy cider is made

Normandy cider is made from apples grown in the orchards of Normandy and harvested in September and October. Once the fruit has been sorted, washed and dried, they are crushed complete with the skin and pips. The mash is then spread out on a cloth that acts as a filter before being pressed to extract the juice.

The juice that comes out of the pressed apples is very sweet and starts to ferment very quickly. This is why the juice is placed in a vat in a cold dry place so that it remains in contact with the air.

In order to make the fermentation of the cider more even, the juice is first siphoned off to remove the sediment and particles that could spoil the taste. The cider is then placed in a cold place while it ferments. Natural yeasts turn the sugar into alcohol and release carbon dioxide. Fermentation lasts for 3 to 6 months depending on the type of cider (sweet or dry) that is being produced.

The flavours and tastes of cider

Normandy Cider is characterised by strong and varied flavours with a dominant fruity note. The cider maker shapes the flavour of the cider by combining different varieties of Normandy apples, which may be acidic, sweet or bitter.

Each cider has its own character that is reflected in its golden colour and effervescence that produces fine, gentle bubbles. Cidre doux, a very light sweet cider, tastes very similar to apple juice. Cidre brut, which is dry and refreshing, is a little stronger in terms of alcohol. The slower the fermentation, the better the cider will be.

Bagnoles’ cider makers

Two well-known cider makers are based in the area. Bagnoles de Pom’ and Ferme des Martellières. Discover their ciders at a tasting on the farm or at Bagnoles de l’Orne’s markets.

Bagnoles de Pom’

Bagnoles de Pom’ is an organic cider orchard. The guided tour of the cider mill offers the opportunity to explore the orchards and understand how cider is made. The tour is illustrated with information panels and a film.

La Ferme des Martellières

Located in Juvigny Val d’Andaine, La Ferme des Martellières is a traditional early-20th-century cider orchard in the Normandy countryside. It won a bronze medal at the 2015 French national agricultural show for its “cidre fermier demi-sec”. On the tour you can see the store house, the press and the still used to make calvados.