This weekend Torontonians will have a perfect way to celebrate the changing of the seasons. Crisp sweater weather and crisp apple cider will be abundant downtown.
The Toronto Cider festival is to premier Sept. 26 at Nathan Phillips Square. The city has caught festival fever in recent years, especially so with alcohol. Craft beer, the staple of hip urban life, even gets its own week in the summer. But this is the first time an event has been dedicated to everyone’s favourite fermented apple beverage.
Like other antiquated alcohols, such as mead, cider is making a comeback. According to Toronto Life, sales at the LCBO have increased over 300 per cent since 2009.
But cider has a long history in Canada. It was originally brought to Canada by British settlers who quickly switched to beer as their preferred hooch. Cider was actually outlawed during the early days of confederation to force the Quebecois population to buy brew. (Coincidentally this was around the time John Molson was a politician).
This weekend’s festival will take place in two sessions, from noon to 4 p.m. and from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Tickets are $40 and include four drink tokens, a commemorative mug and access to live bands and entertainment. VIP tickets are $60 and include six drink tickets and free food pairings. Food trucks will keep patrons from drinking on an empty stomach.