Few things have as much ability to represent the essence of Asturias in a minimalist way as an apple or a bottle of cider. Both the fruit and its juice are present in the tradition and contemporaneity of the region, linked to the social treatment and the Asturian mood. The cultivation of the apple tree in the Principality goes back to «the night of the times». In the absence of excessively ancestral testimonies, there is a written record of their existence before the Romans, thanks to chronicles and Latin documents before them. The first historical reference to the crop dates back to the time of the Astures.
The village of Nava, in the geographical center of autonomy, has the privilege of housing the museum dedicated to this important identity sign. The town has turned its love to the Museum from the beginning, not in vain in a few places it feels like the apple in this place. In the municipality concentrates one of the largest cider productions in the north of the peninsula. How good is your cider is highlighted even more in these times in which the quality criteria, encouraged by the recent denomination of origin, they demand the autochthonous cultivation of the apple. Nava is ready to continue producing, attend to quality and keep in shape a museum that beats to the rhythm of consumption and Asturian feeling.
The lobby has a large counter that provides information on exhibitions, guided tours and assistance in other languages for foreign visitors ... The facilities are conveniently adapted for the visit of people with any degree of disability, and everything is cozy and hospitable , with a precise lighting ambience, spacious rooms and high ceilings.
Through a barrel, as if it were a matter of entering another dimension, we went from the reception to the properly expository space. The visit intends to go parallel to the cider cycle, therefore the visitor does not cease to be amazed at the tremendous analogy that is fulfilled between the museum and its own object. We walk from spring to spring or from pollination to pollination.
We arrived in the autumn and the different varieties of apple used for making cider are selected in different containers and are stored temporarily in the manzaneros of llagares. Once selected, the apples are crushed to facilitate their pressing. The steps are initiated and culminate in a ingenious interactivity in which the spectator uses the apple as a raw material, entrance ticket.
From an optical illusion, the visitor can appreciate the different processes that operate on apple juice to become cider. As in a winery or cellar, coexisting situations typical of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the contraptions used for the manipulation of cider are shown.
The environments that the cider world brings with it take on a life of their own in a winery or cellar where the liquid element sleeps until consumption. And how to drink cider is a constituent act of the "Winches" or cider houses, the museum also stages one of those corners of popular affluence, including basic elements of the daily life of its consumption. At the same time, as traditional games are closely related to cider, and so that nothing is missing, a facility is reproduced within the traditional bowling.
In the social "output" of this regional drink is also found the folklore. The visitor can try to compose for a while in an electronic bagpipe, or be carried away by the traditional sounds that the instrument has memorized.
The microcosm of the museum, therefore, extends from minuscule pollen to the most multitudinous festivals where the escanciados proliferate. And the music accompanies attending to its place of enjoyment, lagar, winch ... that's why you hear the bagpipe and the drum, the tonadas. Asturias in general is music and smell of appleat least in there.
The museum also has a large educational program, which can be consulted at the information desk. The Foundation that administers the center not only worries about the informative wrapping but also reaches the very heart of the apple, worrying about the biological and technological improvements associated with cultivation, production and consumption.
It is clear that taking a culín is not anything and that it deserves a museum.Text: © Ramón Molleda for desdeasturias.com
Information of interestAddress / Location:
Prince of Asturias Square, s / n.
Telephone: 985 71 74 22
More information: Cider Museum