Easter weekend saw thousands of tourists in Donosti/San Sebastián, sampling pintxos, fine dining and soaking up the sun. However, only a select few get to see the Gipuzkoan culture like our three guests this weekend.
A long weekend visiting one of the most beautiful and charming towns in the world is a great idea for an Easter break, its just sometimes you need to get away from the crowds… Our group, over for three nights from London, were treated to an experience only few outsiders get to see. That of the Sagardotegi or Cider House
Hidden away in the hills above Donosti are rural farmhouses surrounded by apple orchards. Over the autumn and winter the apples are collected, pressed and stored in huge wooden barrels called Kupelas where the magic process of fermentation takes place… Come springtime and the ritual of Txotz!! sees the barrels pierced, allowing the golden treasure to fly into the glasses of eager diners!
Our visit saw us take in a small, family-run Sagardotegi where our guests were treated with a mix of curiosity, the stares of small children, smiles, open arms and of course, cries of Txotx! The octogenarian owner was full of stories, indeed at times he insisted we drink more, so he could regale us with tales of old friends who could polish of dozens of bottles in a day!! After leaving for his siesta, he left us alone with his family to round off our meal with the traditional cheese and quince jelly dessert.. not before leaving us with the key so we could serve ourselves!