N.B. farmer plans special batch of 'Storm Cider' to salvage apples felled by Dorian
Published Friday, September 13, 2019 4:55PM ADT
Last Updated Friday, September 13, 2019 7:07PM ADT
They say when life gives you lemons, you make lemonade.
But what if a post-tropical storm gives you apples?
The farmers at an orchard in Memramcook, N.B., are trying to make the best of a bad situation after Dorian ruined much of their crop.
Belliveau Orchard sits along a winding road in the bucolic village of Memramcook, but things were anything but quiet Saturday night when Dorian ripped through the rows of apple trees.
"Every time there's going to be a storm, the night before you don't sleep and you don't sleep during the storm because you're always thinking the worst," said orchard owner Robert Bourgeois.
Bourgeois is the owner of Belliveau Orchard. He says it didn't take long for his crew to realize just how much damage Dorian had done.
"A couple hundred bins, which represents about 16,000 pounds of apple … more than that, sorry, 160,000 pounds of apple that we lost on the ground," Bourgeois said.
But, ever the optimist, Bourgeois and his team didn't let the disaster get them down for long.
"We said 'well, we've got to come up with something to salvage some of the apples on the ground,'" Bourgeois said. "So we (said) 'well, we're going to do a hard cider!'"
Making cider isn't anything new to Bourgeois. His company already produces the popular Scow Cider as well.
"The cider we do already right now it's a recipe, the apples have to be a certain ripeness and all the varieties," Bourgeois said. "This is going to be a kind of tricky thing to do."
Taking on that tricky task? Belliveau's trusted wine and cider maker, Eric Noel.
"The apples are not as ripe as they're supposed to be," Noel said. "So, it's a question mark and I gotta test the juice and try to figure out what I'm going to do with that."
Bourgeois is still awaiting official approval from the New Brunswick Liquor Corporation to begin selling his new brew, but he says he's confident the aptly named "Storm cider" will be a huge hit.
"It's a mystery and, if it works, you never know, we might do it every year even if there's no storm!" Bourgeois said.
The stormy cider is expected to hit shelves in October.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Eilish Bonang.