Malus Mama

Basque (Astigarraga)

Ice Cider 2011


No intervention save pruning takes place. The apples are high in tannin and acidity, but relatively low in sugar, and are picked and pressed in October. The juice is frozen for a week or so, and only 25% of the original volume remains. After fermentation, it's aged 18 months in very old barricas, is unsulphured until bottling, then rested in bottle for several years until finding expression and balance. It's 11% abv, 140-150g residual sugar, pH 3.5. Made since 2008, production is about 3500 bottles nowadays. High acid, and high sugar in tensile balance is the aim: foie, tripe and tart-tatine are equal targets.

Olive-amber, deep and shiny, somewhere in between boal and eaux-de-vie to, and kinda thick-looking. Wow! Unbelievably pure essence of yellowy apples launches from the nose. Still, sweet, penetratingly acidic, apple toffee, juicy appleskin memory, intense in all ways but not heavy nor cloying and the mouth is excited but not overwhelmed at end. Great tannin grip (not holding tight through) with a malip rip.