Banda Cider and Wine – Introduction
Banda Cider is a relatively new producer of interesting and very tasty ciders and apple wines that have been made using natural and organic processes.
They source their fruit from some of the very best organic producers. Their apples come from Our Mates Farm just outside Geeveston (you can buy their fruit from the roadside stall here) and their grape skins come from our friend Rory Duggan who works a number of small vineyards in southern Tasmania including the main one at Flowerpot.
All the fruit they source is organic and the fermentation is carried out naturally in the same way as Rory makes his exceptional wines.
We recently thoroughly enjoyed their 2022 Cider of The Arve, named after the region to the west of Geeveston where the apples were sourced. The varieties were Yarlington Mill, Kingston Black, Frequin Rouge, Cimetiere de Blangy and Antoinette.
We were very interested to learn that they ground harvested the apples and then cured them before pressing them through oat straw (they grew the oats in their garden) to extract the juice.
This is the same process as is used by our supplier of cider from Brittany, Julien Fremont who cures his apples in an attic in his 1770s cidery before pressing them through straw.
The Banda cider was fermented naturally in stainless steels tanks then the juice was transferred to oak barrels to gain complexity before being bottled with residual sugar to produce the required bubbles.
After nine months in the bottle the cider was disgorged to expel the solids that had gathered in the neck of the bottle and then topped up and sealed. The alcohol level is a pleasant 6.5%.
The result is a beautiful, fine, elegant cider with perfect bubbles – not too aggresive, just the right level of fizz.
The Web site for this promising producer is bandabottles.com and you can contact them at email@example.com.
We have included Banda in our survey of Tasmanian Organic Produce here.
Banda also produces two lovely drinks which sit between wines and ciders. To do this they harvest apples suitable for cider and then mix the juice from these apples with grape skins used by Rory Duggan to make his wonderful wines.
Their 2022 Sparkling Apple Wine #1 (their label is shown to the left of this text) is made with the following apples: Spartan, Crofton, Geeveston Fanny, Jonagold, Red Delicious and Bulmers Norman.
These are combined with the skins of Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc after Rory had pressed them for his wine. The idea here is for the anthocyanins from the grape skins to provide their own influence in the flavour and texture of the resultant beverage.
For their 2022 Sparkling Apple Wine #2 the approach was the same but only the first four apple varieties were used and the grape skins were from Chardonnay grapes only.