The production of our hard cider starts with growing our apples and pears on Washington Island. All of our fruit is picked by hand, transported across Death’s Door to Door County’s mainland, and then delivered to Seaquist Orchard. There the fruit is pressed before being delivered to our Door County Cider House.
Once the fresh juice is at our cider house, the production crew really gets to work. Each ferment takes roughly three to four weeks from start to finish. During that time the crew carefully tends to each ferment, monitoring the progress daily. When the cider is fully fermented, it is stored in a chilled warehouse to mature before bottling.
From France to Wisconsin: Island Orchard Cider Proves Fruitful
“The cider-making process is a seasonal affair that begins in late September when the first apples are harvested. Apples from the Purmans’ Washington Island orchard are combined with supplemental fruit from other Door County growers and pressed at Seaquist Orchards right down the road. Then Bob “pitches the yeast” and the six-week fermentation process begins. The cider is aged in stainless steel or oak for an additional four-to-six months before bottling. “We’re lucky to be able to do two full fermentations a year,” explained Bob, who enjoys how his work is dictated by nature’s calendar.”
Bottling is the last step before the cider is ready for sale. Our diligent bottling crew fills, caps, and packages bottles all year round - all of which is done by hand. When you stop into our Door County Cider House on a week day you will likely see our production team working away, doing everything from filling bottles to scrubbing the floor. All important steps to produce delicious cider goodness.