It´s now the start of the new “cider season”, meaning that the cider that was produced last year will be drunk during the next few months, before the season ends again at the end of April. It´s natural cider, made with just apples and nothing else, with a low alcohol content (4º), fresh and still, no artificial anything added.
Most “sidrerías” are concentrated around Donostia-San Sebastián, in the Gipuzkoa province, although you can find them now in many other places in the Basque Country. Season begins with the traditional opening of the Kupela (huge cider barrel) by someone locally famous, and following the expression (in Basque) “The new cider has arrived!”, the season is officially opened. All sidrerías offer a closed menu for around 25-30 euros, including cod omelette, peppers, t-bone steak, walnuts and cheese (with slight variations). It´s typical to have this menu standing or in long shared tables, and you can have AS MUCH CIDER as you want, it´s included in the price. Sometimes there´s singing of traditional songs and maybe some dancing.
For more info, www.sagardotegiak.com, also in English. It describes the process, the rites and lists the names of the most popular sidrerías.