Quebrada del Chucao is a family owned cidery in Villarica (vee aree-ka), a village located in southern Chile. The Nahrwold family along with cousin Diego Rivera have been making cider commercially since 2012. Villarica is located approximately 746 kilometers/463 miles south of the capital of Santiago. In view of the town is a volcano that Diego will describe during this chat as active and illuminated at night “very mystical with lots of local lore’. Says Diego on making cider at the base of the Villarrica volcano. “We can’t do much if the volcano explodes, apart from running”
Diego helped me interpret and understand the cidery’s name; Quebrada means a water creek. And Chucao is a small hopping bird (it doesn’t fly) that stays on the forest floor. Look at the label on Quebrada del Chucao’s cider below.
Diego is a winemaker full time and heads to Villarica once or twice a month to check the cider. The cidery sits on his Uncle Jorge Nahrwold farm. His son Matías Nahrwold, is Diego’s cousin and they work together at the cidery.
Chile grows many different varieties of apples. Brought over by the Europeans, the countryside does have many old apple trees that are still being discovered. Locals have their own names for apples such as the Roja Chica, which Diego discusses in this chat. It is a small apple that is high in tannins and polyphenols.
Quebrada del Chucao Ciders
Currently Quebrada del Chucao is producing 7000 bottles of cider in 750ML bottles. The goal is to increase production to 24,000 bottles in the next few years. Apples are brought in from local orchards and are then pressed and blended. There is very little sugar added and a bit of yeast. Says Diego, “The goal is slow production and keeping the quality of the cider.”
They use the Champagne method for making their cider or as they call it Sidra Espumante Brut Nature, which Deigo provides details of in this chat.
And, Quebrada del Chucao is experimenting with a Poire or Perry.
The Chilean cider scene is growing. There is currently talks on forming a Chilean Cider Association to promote local cider and educate the public. Cider in Chile cannot have an ABV (alcohol by volume) higher than 8% which Diego says is a bit of a drawback.
Quebrada del Chucao info
- Website: http://www.quebradadelchucao.cl/
- Twitter: @quebradadelchucao
- US importer: Brazo Wine Imports
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