Bridgetown, a small town on the West Coast with a history of growing apples. This is where 20 years a hobby became a business. Today, that business Blackwood Valley Brewing Company make a range of ciders by The Cidery. Lets start with the Bitter Sweet Cider.
Down in Harcourt, Victoria its the middle of the 2015 Vintage. Fruit picking is in full swing. It’s beginning to look like a bumper crop. I called Simon Frost between truckloads of apples bins coming out of the orchard ready to be pressed and turned into Harcourt Apple Cider waiting for me to review.
Cider in a can, the last time I had cider from a can I was quite a bit younger and the cider was fake rubbish. Australian Brewery Fresh Press Cider wants to change this perception in the name of quality. By lifting the quality of the can and more importantly what goes into it.
A cider, by wine makers, Napoleone Apple Cider is a family operation that grows, presses and ferments the fruit themselves. This gives them total control over the end product, which has earnt them a silver medal in the 2013 Cider Australia Awards for medium ciders (specific gravity between 1005 and 1012).
The Napoleone family immigrated from Italy in the 1940’s settling in the Yarra Valley. They set about planting apples for the eating market. Today they have around 250 hectares of apple trees. In the late 1980 vines were planted and was later turned to wine sold under the Punt Road label.
Until today I thought that terrior could only come from the soil type, the annual rainfall, the things that make your orchard unique. Today my perception of Terrior changed, I realised it was more ethereal than what flavours the sunlight hours and soil provide. The extra element is the regionality and Young Henry’s Cloud Cider could be any Newtown if it tried
On what feels like Sydney’s wettest day in 2014, I find myself in a industrial unit, in the back streets of Newtown, where inside is just as wet. They guys were hard at work cleaning out the fermentation tanks ready for the next batch. I sat down with Owen from Young Henry’s to talk about making cider in Sydney’s Inner West.