St. Ronans Cider
St Ronan’s Cider is a world away from the soft, sweet ciders that have become so popular in recent years. Owner and cider maker Eric Driessen focuses on the dry and complex “méthode traditionelle” (MT) style, employing an old French winemaking technique used to produce champagne.
Ciders here undergo two fermentation stages – the second of which happens in the bottle – and spend time on lees (the spent yeast that gives champagne its creaminess). The process results in a complex, textural cider that’s incredibly food-friendly. MT ciders are typically made from tannic apples grown specifically for cider making, although St Ronan’s also produces a draught-style cider from sweeter eating apples.
The cidery and cellar door shares its corner of the Yarra Valley with Badger Creek Blueberry Winery – also by Driessen and his family – which grows cider apples and pears on-site.
Visitors to the cellar door can opt for a tasting paddle to try the range, which includes two 100-mil ciders and two blueberry wines.
Food-friendly cider deserves to be tasted in context, and St Ronan’s offers a small menu including pork sliders, French cheeses and charcuterie.
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