Pouring involves letting the cider fall from a certain height from the bottle to the glass. Its origin comes from the espicha, a method of serving in which cider is released in a jet through a spigot on the cask into the glass or carafe. This provides the same effect as serving from the barrel. By following this ritual the aim is to reaffirm the qualities of the cider, and awaken the endogenous carbon and volatilize part of the acetic acid in the cider.
The glass measures 12 centimetres high, 9 cm across the mouth and 7 cm across the bottom, which increases evaporation. The aroma is favoured by the bubbles of carbon dioxide and air formed when the cider impacts against the sides of the glass.
The canonical method for pouring cider tells us that the posture should be straight without being rigid; the arm holding the bottle must be stretched up straight over the head. The arm with the glass has to be stretched down and at the centre of the body. When the bottle is tilted to pour the culete, or shot, it should be held with the index, middle and ring fingers round the body, and the little finger underneath the bottom of the bottle; the fingers holding the bottle should not move towards the bottle’s neck.
The glass is held with the thumb and forefinger, while the middle finger supports the bottom of the glass, and the ring and little fingers are gathered in the palm of the hand; the glass must not move from the centre of the body, which means that it is the stream of cider that has to find the glass; the cork can be grasped with the ring and little fingers of the hand responsible for holding the glass; when serving the cider, removing the thumb from the glass makes it easier for the person whose turn it is to drink to take hold of the glass. The serving person must always ensure that the cider foams.
The gas produced when the cider is cast is called the estrella, or star. The pegue or grano (stickiness) is the ability of the remains of cider to adhere to the sides of the glass after the cider has been drunk. Finally, aguante refers to the bubbles that remain in the cider after foaming. These are the characteristics of quality cider.