Our Cidery is located in the scenic Hall’s Orchard of Isle La Motte. The property has been in our family since the late 1700’s and different generations of Halls have been cultivating apples and pears since the orchard was started. From 1828 until 2005 when the matriarch of the family, Mina Hall, passed away these generations of Halls have lived in the family farm house. The house is one of the historic stone houses built by the Scottish stone mason, James Ritchie. The stone in the house was quarried on the island and ancient coral reef fossils can be found in them.
In an effort to help keep the orchard in the family and operating successfully Steve and Carol Hall Stata began restoring the family farm house and in 2008 started a seasonal café. The Café is in a renovated carriage barn attached to the house.
Building on the success of the Café, in 2009 we decided to experiment with making Ice Cider. We made 3 different varieties, all of which were delicious. The response was immediate and we quickly sold everything we had produced and we began making plans for expansion. In 2010 we tripled production and added a fourth variety. 2011 found us tripling again and adding a fifth variety.
With the increase production we quickly outgrew our original facilities. In 2011 we completed the restoration of the fruit house, located on the other side of the main house opposite the Cafe. As with many things on an old farm the fruit house had been used for many activities including the storage and packing of apples and for living quarters for at least one set of grandparents. It now is climate controlled and houses both the press equipment and fermentation/aging equipment. The lab and bottling room along with the tasting room are in the main farm house.
The Ice Cider is available at the Cidery, many farmers markets in the area, a number of stores throughout Grand Isle, Franklin and Chittenden counties, many wine tasting events through the state and special tasting events help at the Cidery.
We also have a very nice apple table wine and Hard Cider. Both are made from the same sweet cider concentrate used in making our Ice Cider.
We are truly a family organization. Carol’s brother Allen Hall owns most of and operates all the orchard, Steve & Carol’s daughter, Shannon English works in the Café and sells the Ice Cider at many events. Son-in-law Joel English works full time in the Cidery and orchard. Steve’s sister helps in the Café’s kitchen and grandkids help with the Ice Cider production and general orchard work, and a number of other nieces and nephews help with the café, selling the Ice Cider and/or general orchard work.