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Places to buy hard cider in Montreal

DanaanMI Aug 27, 2010 02:14 PM

I've just moved to Montreal, and I haven't been able to find hard cider anywhere. Does anyone know of a store where it's sold? I live downtown, in the Plateau area, though I can of course travel anywhere in the city. Hard cider is my favorite drink and I would love to be able to buy it here. I'm used to drinking Wyder's apple cider, Woodchuck and Strongbow, but I'm not terribly picky. Thanks!

  1. d
    DanaanMI Sep 14, 2010 01:50 PM

    Thank you for all your replies, I went the Marche des Saveurs today and bought a few beer-sized bottles of different kinds to try. I got one each of Mystique, Perle and McKeown. I'll enjoy trying them!

    3 Replies
    1. re: DanaanMI
      SourberryLily Sep 14, 2010 01:56 PM

      Funny, not even 2 weeks ago, i asked if they had Mystique... the guy said no and that he hadn't even heard of it. Oh well, can't rely too much on clerks. McKeown is excellent though.

      1. re: SourberryLily
        DanaanMI Sep 15, 2010 09:49 AM

        Well, they didn't have it in the boissons artisanales section, they had it in the larger store. It seemed like they were kind of separate.

        1. re: DanaanMI
          SourberryLily Sep 15, 2010 01:39 PM

          That explains it! thank you, i'll look there next time.

    2. SourberryLily Sep 9, 2010 08:50 AM

      I just came back from the Festival des Bieres et Saveur de Chambly and sampled many ciders.

      Discovered McKeown which has 2 draft ciders (one regular one cranberry flavored). They were both EXCELLENT, comparable to Strongbow or Magners. Found them again the next day at Jean-Talon Market's Marché des Saveurs. A 6pack was about 13$, or sold individually for 2.50$.

      FYI, Marché des Saveurs has a lot of draft cider available in small beer sized bottles.

      Jean-Talon Market
      7075 Avenue Casgrain, Montreal, QC H2S, CA

      1. SourberryLily Aug 30, 2010 06:08 AM

        No strongbow here, nor magners, sorry :(

        I heard it's something about the SAQ deliberately trying to "protect" the local apple producers and ciders by not importing it. While it's a shame because i love magners, the intentions are good!

        Cidrerie du Minot products is quite common in bars here. For a complete list of "cidrerie", look here:

        And about where to find them, SAQs Classique usually have at least one brand on hand.

        8 Replies
        1. re: SourberryLily
          lagatta Aug 30, 2010 06:19 AM

          You can pick up many British and Irish ciders at the LCBO in Ontario. If you visit Ottawa, the big outlet on Rideau (eastern city centre) has a very good selection. Yes, I do think their absence here is due to protectionism; idem the fact that there are very few quality Ontario wines at the SAQ. I'm proud of our ciders, but would like access to others.

          A good, not-too-sweet local cider in beer-sized bottles is the Michel Jodoin, available at SAQ outlets. I think it is about 6% alc.

          If you happen to be visiting Ottawa, for queries about ciders available across the border, this is the most current cider topic on the Ontario board: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/676267

          1. re: lagatta
            titihood Aug 31, 2010 06:37 AM

            It is good to know that British and Irish ciders are available - even if it means crossing the border to get them. I find that although Quebec ciders are nice, I really miss the stronger flavour of the British ones. I will have to have a look out for the Michel Jodoin bottles.

            1. re: titihood
              currycue Aug 31, 2010 02:00 PM

              If you really want a strong, locally made one, look out for Waupoos Cider, made in Prince Edward County, Ontario. We get it in Ontario at the LCBO. Amazing! Strong, dry and earthy. You can even taste the apple skins.

              1. re: titihood
                mark_mtl Sep 5, 2010 03:16 PM

                By FAR the best we have in town are the Michel Jodoin bottles -- there are tons available at the Atwater Market SAQ (not the huge store across the street but actually in the market). IT's a really exceptional, crisp cider. $3 a bottle.

                1. re: mark_mtl
                  lagatta Sep 6, 2010 05:21 AM

                  mark, people can simply check out the saq.com website for availability in Mtl or anywhere in QC. They carry it at Beaubien/St-André SAQ. It is very good.
                  Michel Jodoin Grande Tentation cidre léger pétillant
                  Code SAQ : 11002423
                  CUP : 00609780 003081

                  Pity, there are only two bottles at SAQ Dépôt. It would be nice to pick up a dozen and get the 15% discount, on not very bulky merchandise.

                  1. re: lagatta
                    karela Sep 6, 2010 09:20 AM

                    ooooh, I am always tempted by that discount too. The only thing is that you have to make sure your eyes are not bigger than your liver, so to speak. :-)

                    Last year we ended up going on a tour of the eastern townships and buying a lot of cider in the summer, but as winter approached the allure of a cold crisp cider was temporarily forgotten. In the late spring, when we starting thinking of such things again, we discovered that the ciders that had been dry and crisp the previous year had become notably sweeter- somewhat to their detriment in our opinion.

                    1. re: karela
                      amylnitrate Sep 9, 2010 06:16 AM

                      Michel Jodoin is available at several big chain grocery stores too, like IGA (specifically the one at René-Levesque and St-Urbain). There's a variety, in 750ml or litre bottles (don't remember which): hard, sparkling, rosé etc.

                      Cidrerie du Minot is what they tend to have on tap at a lot of bars. Like MJ, this is pretty close to British cider like Strongbow.

                      Although it's in high supply in Quebec, I've never liked ice cider - it's thick, flat and sickly sweet.

                      1. re: amylnitrate
                        Plateaumaman Sep 9, 2010 06:24 AM

                        There is cider sampling of Michel Jodoin ciders at a depanneur on Duluth very near St-Denis tonight, tomorrow and Saturday, btw. I bought a sparkling one there yesterday and it was good but I have to admit I love the non-alcoholic sparkling juice. I bought it at Parc Mont-St-Bruno after apple picking but it is a few dollars cheaper at this depanneur.

          2. m
            Maximilien Aug 29, 2010 03:48 PM

            I tried the "Luk" rosé cider this week-end, it's quite nice; it's made by Jodoin.


            4 Replies
            1. re: Maximilien
              lagatta Aug 29, 2010 04:44 PM

              I like Luk better than Mystique, which I find too sweet. I bought some at the Portuguese grocery at the corner of St-Dominique and Villeneuve. Very nice. I'm peeved with Mystique as they sneakily downsized their bottles (from beer-bottle-sized to 250ml). http://www.domainedeguire.ca/fr/luk.html

              I don't know where you are from, but hereabouts (as in most of the world) cider contains some alchohol, from "light" to "strong".

              1. re: lagatta
                hala Aug 30, 2010 08:25 PM

                In the US I have usually heard 'cider' for apple juice and 'hard cider' for anything alcoholic.

                Mystique used to be available at my local Metro.

                SAQ does try to privilege Quebec ciders as some have stated but I have in the past bought Grower's (BC) from at least 2 locations.

                And talking about hard cider and Jodoin, have you guys tried their apple brandy? mmm.

                1. re: hala
                  lagatta Aug 31, 2010 07:52 AM

                  "Cider" for unfiltered apple juice is originally a US term; I believe it dates back to Prohibition.

                  Nope, haven't tried Jodoin apple brandy. How does it compare to Calvados?

                2. re: lagatta
                  lagatta Aug 31, 2010 07:37 PM

                  I'm drinking a little bottle of Luk cider right now. I like it better than Mystique - it is much drier, also a little stronger, not that that was really a criterium as I wanted something refreshing on this hot night. Picked it up at Dépanneur St-Dominique, corner St-Dominique and Bélanger, nella Piccola Italia. Closest place on the domaine deguire list that had it. Write to them and they'll send you a list for your area, by postal code.

              2. c
                C70 Aug 29, 2010 07:53 AM

                I'd call the cheese shop in atwater market and ask them too. they have a great beer selection

                134, Atwater Avenue
                Montreal, Quebec, H4C 2G3
                phone: (514) 932-9731

                1. NickMontreal Aug 28, 2010 08:46 AM

                  Hi Danaan...

                  I too am a fan of hard cider like Strongbow (which by the way is not available in Quebec, but I believe it is in Ontario)....

                  While Quebec prides itself on its cider, it seems that most of the stuff from around these parts is from small artisanal producers, and normally it comes in a small sparkling wine type bottles... don't get me wrong - it's great stuff, just not the kind of thing I'd choose for everyday drinking.

                  I have found one brand called Mystique which is quite widely available in depanneurs and supermarkets. It's not quite as dry as I would like to be honest, but it's pretty good...

                  If you find anything else keep us posted!

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: NickMontreal
                    DanaanMI Aug 28, 2010 12:47 PM

                    Do you know of any specific depanneurs where they have it? I've been looking in every one I come across and have yet to find cider of any kind. Thanks!

                    1. re: DanaanMI
                      currycue Aug 29, 2010 05:56 AM

                      I remember getting a really good one in Outremont at the SAQ called "Kerisac" from Brittany. It was about $6 for a 750ml bottle. Nice and dry too. I found a lot of the Quebec ciders I tried were too sweet for my taste (even the ones that claimed to be dry)

                      1. re: DanaanMI
                        eatwell Aug 29, 2010 07:26 AM

                        The Dep at the corner of Duluth & Drolet has Mystique cider.

                        1. re: DanaanMI
                          mintyfresh Aug 29, 2010 08:04 AM

                          The "Thai" dep at the corner of Papineau & Mont-Royal definitely carries Mystique - I bought some there just yesterday.

                          Good luck with your search!

                          1. re: DanaanMI
                            NickMontreal Aug 30, 2010 05:23 AM

                            Bigras Supermarket on de Bordeaux and Gauthier sells Mystique I believe... also the depanneur on Berri and Duluth...

                            1. re: NickMontreal
                              currycue Sep 13, 2010 09:17 AM

                              I got to try Mystique at a small restaurant in Old Montreal a few days ago. Very good stuff. I was looking for it at the SAQ and couldn't find it. Next time, I'll go to a dep. instead. Found a good stock of my Kerisac cider at the SAQ on Mt. Royal, near Roy jewellers. Can't beat $5.33/750mL.

                              1. re: currycue
                                lagatta Sep 13, 2010 02:04 PM

                                I don't think Mystique is sold at SAQs. I've never seen it there. Dépanneurs or supermarkets. I'm pissed off at them because they reduced their bottle size - reducing package sizes is a big peeve of mine, whatever the product.

                        2. m
                          Maximilien Aug 27, 2010 06:54 PM

                          Most alcohol is sold thrue the SAQ, so your best bet is to go to one of the many stores that are around (not all store carry every product). Go on the SAQ web site and do an advance search (recherche avancée) and in the "nature" section choose the second "Sparking Cider" or in french "Cidre effervescent" and look at the resutls; most of them are local and bottled in full bottles, not in "beer" size bottles.

                          That said, you can/could find "beer sized" cider bottles in specialty depanneurs ( for example Rahman on Laurier st.) and most probably at "Le Marché Des Saveurs" at Jean-Talon Market.

                          Good luck.


                          Jean-Talon Market
                          7075 Avenue Casgrain, Montreal, QC H2S, CA

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