The Cider World According to Abel Cider

Each month Crafty Nectar are interviewing some of the best cider makers on the planet, to give an insight into their own cider world. This is your exclusive all-access pass to the people behind the cider, what excites them and a looki ahead to the future.
We caught up with  Mark McGill from Abel Cider, who produces  dry, bottle fermented boutique cider from the Nelson-Tasman region in the South Island of New Zealand. Without further ado, lets find out about 'Cider World according' to Abel Cider...

1) Where are you based? Why here?

Nelson, New Zealand.

It’s gods just kidding! Beautiful soil, climate, people & world renowned for growing delicious apples & pears. Oh, and the beaches & scenery in the Abel Tasman is to die for.

2) Describe your cider co in 3 words...

Pure, delicious, authentic

3) What makes your ciders stand out from the crowd?

We make one cider, each vintage. We put all our focus into one to ensure it’s the best we can offer. We ferment the entire fruit - skins, stalks, pips & all. It spends at least 12 months in bottle before release. Bone dry, bottle fermented (non-disgorged), pure, delicious, refreshing & authentic.

4) What is the key to producing good cider/perry?

Respecting the fruit.

5) Share with us a 'cider fact of the day'....

Cider is wine made from apples.


6) What are the most difficult challenges you face as a cider-maker?

Educating people about the difference between cider made properly and the other stuff they’ve been lead to believe is “cider”.

7) If you could change one thing about the industry, what would it be?

It’s honesty.

8) Favourite apple/pear variety? Why?

Sturmer. Colour, fruit purity, flavour, acidity & ageability.

9) What are your most excited about this year?

The rise of cider made properly. We are coming people, we are coming...

10) Can you explain the whole ‘cider is wine’ movement?

“Cider is Wine” is about getting cider out of the beer space which it’s been wrongly lumped into. But furthermore, it’s another avenue for educating people about what cider made properly can be. I don’t believe there’s one definitive direction to go in, so everything helps!

Cider Spotlight: Abel Méthode Cider

Abel Méthode Cider is made each vintage in small quantities from freshly harvested apples and pears.  This fruit is hand-picked, crushed and fermented until deliciously dry creating an unfined and unfiltered cider. The magic happens as Mark allows his cider to naturally clarify via gravity, persistence and patience is key, and this helps preserve all the natural fruit goodness.  


Much like champagne, all Abel Methode cider undergoes a secondary fermentation in the bottle producing a naturally carbonated product. This creates a refreshing full-flavoured cider with an extra layer of complexity and texture from the bottle fermentation.

The taste? "Crisp green apple, delicate pear florals, racy acidity, bone dry & deliciously refreshing..."


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