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Ferme Apicole Desrochers is led by second-generation apiarist and mead maker Naline Dupuis Desrochers and her partner Géraud Bonnet. In the early 70s, Naline’s parents left Montreal for the country. They landed in a municipality called Ferme-Neuve, about 2.5 hours northwest, defined by a stunning landscape of mountains, rivers, and so much abundant nature. The apiary started small, after they attended a local beekeeping workshop and later received a beehive in the mail. Though they had some serious studying up to do... fast forward to 2019: the second generation is now managing roughly 1,200 hives, continuing to innovate the fermentation process. Unlike grape must, mead needs added yeast to start fermentation, so while many producers use commercial wine yeasts purchased out of a catalogue, Naline and Géraud devised a way to cultivate their own starter with yeast found on flower pollen. Their meads span the gamut from the precise and crystalline to the funky, fun, and sessionable. The ‘Cuvée de la Diable’ is comparable to a dessert wine; it is made from a blend of spring, fall, and buckwheat honey, aged 3 years in barrel, and has some slightly earthy and oxidative tones. It is supple on the palate with sweetness that is not cloying with the right balance of acidity to make a wonderful companion to an array of desserts.