Stop Press: March 2017
We are in the final stages of compiling the Cider and Perry range for the 2017 festival so at this stage cannot post exact suppliers and products.
~ As we are an early show in the calendar year for cider and Perry producers to supply, most are still busy gathering and pressing cider at the moment, with the Perry in the early stages of fermentation.
~ So to be getting along with, our aim is to produce a balanced range for festival goers to enjoy, both ciders and Perry ranges will represent dry to sweet and from approx. 4.6 to 7.4 ABV so there will be something for everyone.
~ We are talking to a couple of suppliers who produce product with a twist! More to follow late, watch for updates, follow us on Twitter and Facebook
What is “Real Cider and Perry” ?
Real Cider is a long-established traditional drink, which is produced naturally from apples and is neither carbonated nor pasteurised. However Real Cider is in a similar situation to that which faced Real Ale some 30 years ago with even in the West Country, the number of outlets for Real Cider diminishing. The situation with Perry (which is made from pears) is even worse, as it is rarely available away from the farm gate. It is unfortunate that many of the most well-known ciders in the UK are cold, fizzy keg products that have been produced artificially rather than naturally.
It is well worth you tracking down some real Ciders and Perries and more and more people are discovering for themselves how deliciously mellow, aromatic and intoxicating the flavours of naturally, produced real cider can be.
So, if you’ve only seen cider sold in bright coloured bottles then come and try the real thing at the beer festival, we’ll have more than 30 from which to choose.
CAMRA’s definition of Real Cider
For more information about Real Cider read the CAMRA cider pages, follow @camra_apple and come and talk to our friendly cider bar team at the festival.
How does it compare with keg cider?
Keg cider is often made with apple concentrate (which can be from anywhere including imported), sometimes with other artificial flavours. It is carbonated, pasteurised and served under gas pressure. It is usually filtered may also contain any of a long list of additives and colourings as defined permissible under Section 162 produced by HM Customs & Excise Department.
Perry is a drink so difficult to find that most people don’t even know of its existence.
Believe it or not more Perry is made now than has been made in a century, but it is difficult to market because of its low production volumes. Perry is traditionally a specialty of the Three Counties and Welsh Borders, as perry pears were said to only thrive ‘in sight of May Hill’. Now however perry pears are also grown in other areas e.g. Somerset & Norfolk.
The demand is there for Perry but producers cannot make enough of it, as there is not enough quality fruit available. It takes only three years for a perry pear planted in the right conditions to bear fruit, but up to thirty years before it is at full maturity.
Yearly CAMRA run a National Cider & Perry Competition and present Gold, Silver & Bronze Awards for both Cider & Perry.
Serving Real Cider
Depending on facilities and turnover in the licenses premises, real cider is usually served from a polycask or similar container on or behind the bar.
Lately there has been an innovative marketing of real cider from Manucubes or a bag in a box system to extend the shelf life to 3 months. These are available from specialist off licence shops & are increasingly being used by Weston’s.
Both Manucubes or the bag in a box system are similar to the well accepted Australian wine box & prevent the spoiling of the cider by excluding air, thus preventing airborne anerobic bacteria infecting the drink, or if present, growing in the container thus making the cider “hard” (or infected) once opened.by admin