Pressing’s finished! Thanks to everyone who pressed, delivered and grew apples. While never an easy time, it’s was a lot less taxing than previous years thanks to the new conveyor and its magic powers. The last load of apples were delivered into the silos and Neil and Dave got through them at lightning speed with the end in sight. Well done boys.
New pricing – real cider for less than before
The cuts are hitting us here at Worley’s Cider, but in a good way! We’ve cut the cost of our 50cl bottles, taking £3 off a case when you buy from the website. That makes each bottle £2.50, so £30 for a case of 12 and cracking good value for a premium craft cider. There’s a delivery cost of £8.50 but this will cover two cases and is delivered by courier under a Fragile service. Why not get a mixed case or two of Mendip Hills, Red Hen and Harvest Moon in for Christmas?
Also included in the two-case deal is the beautiful Special Reserve, and it’s brilliant value at just £5 a bottle. Refreshingly sparkly with a bright appley taste – this is our go-to cider over Christmas. We open the first bottle around midday on Christmas day and quaff it in champagne flutes. it’s a great alternative to champers and has that real celebration buzz about it.
Wine bods are always so descriptive about the flavour characteristics of their favourite drink, and recently our ciders have been getting a lot of interest from wine groups and wine tasters. The Special Reserve is always received really well among appreciators of wine, and it recently came top in a blind tasting at a local wine group. It beat keeved ciders that are nearly three times the price, and confirmed to us what we’ve always thought – that this is one of the finest keeved ciders on the market. Get plenty in folks.
Last shout – our 20-litre bag in box ciders are easy for us to send out and are always a splendid addition to any Christmas or New Year’s eve party. They last up to 3 months after opening so would ease you through the first part of 2016 if there’s any left.
What’s the worst that could happen?
That’s the sales pitch over, but we do love cider at Christmas. With all the rich food and the overindulgence, a cold glass of still or sparkling does the trick to cleanse the palate and refresh the taste buds. The acidity level in cider gives it the clean, crisp characteristics that make it the ideal summertime drink. The gentle acidity works in the same way over Christmas when the central heating’s too high and the fire’s roaring! And we don’t mind a bit if you want to fill your glass with ice. (Red Hen tastes really good over ice, but don’t tell the cider police we said so.)
We also cook with our ciders quite a lot. Adding a splash of cider when making the gravy lends a sweetness to the meat juices and introduces another dimension to a savoury sauce. Just a splash though, we use it as a flavouring rather than a stock. You can also include it in homemade apple sauce – again a splash when cooking the apples goes down well.
If you’ve got any leftover ham this Christmas, try making a bechamel sauce using half milk and half cider and mixing it with some cooked ham and a handful of parsley. Great in a pie.
Cider works well with pheasant too. We’ve tried plenty of recipes over the years including those from Delia and Hugh FW, but here’s one by Blanche Vaughan on the Guardian website that’s delicious. Serve with mash, and it’s surprisingly good with rice too.
Always tricky to recommend certain ciders with certain foods, because palates and expectations are so different. However, we sample our ciders regularly and try them with different foods, and we feel able to make a few recommendations. It’s official, ciders tastes great with rich meat dishes – roasts such as pork, chicken, turkey and goose. A cider like Mendip Hills or Red Hen will go down a treat with a Boxing Day curry (or indeed any curry – cider works really well with a decent curry); and something punchy and bold like Harvest Moon will wash down a mince pie or two just lovely.
We look forward to meeting friends and customers at our Christmas events and markets this year, or feel free to visit us at the farm and buy your Christmas ciders direct from us. Thanks to everyone who visited us at Frome Independent on Sunday. Happy Christmas to all our Frome customers and fellow market folk, hopefully we’ll continue to see you all in the new year.
If you can’t get to us or our events this year, check out our stockist page here. If you’d like to buy a pint of one of our ciders at your local, then please ask the landlord to get in touch 01749 880016 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We can send boxes directly – tell your landlord they work out very cost-effective!