Lifestyle

Cider Makers in the South West

13/08/2014

Cornwall

Healey’s
Healey’s are the largest cider maker in Cornwall and we can’t recommend highly enough how much real cider lovers should visit their fantastic farm shop. Not only will you find great cider but they also make whiskey, brandy and a fantastic Eau de Vie. Quite simply the best day out you’ll have since your best mate’s stag do. In fact why are you even still reading this? Get in the car! Get thee to Cornwall forthwith! Healey’s is open and there’s serious sampling to be done.

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healeys

Cornish Orchards
Not only do Cornish ciders produce a fantastic range of apple and pear ciders they also make some ruddy good alcoholic ginger beer. Every single batch they produce is taste tested and try as we might they wouldn’t give us the gig. However we did manage to enjoy a few samples and are now complete converts to their fruity flavours… Now all we need to do it find out how to land that testing job…

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cornish orchards

Polgoon Cider
Picked and pressed on their own farm Polgoons really do supply ciders to suit every taste, indeed ciders for all seasons. For traditional cider drinkers there is a rich textured scrumpy which comes in traditional flagons. Modern cider drinkers will find pear, raspberry, berry, black and Cornish ciders are all available to buy online. Polgoon also supply hampers and some very fine wines. All in all well worth a trip to the West Country.

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polgoon

Devon

Sandfords Orchards
Sandfords really do manage to be all things to all men in the search for perfect cider. With vintage, blackberry, summer fruits, scrumpy, cloudy and our particular favourite the straw pressed cider there really is something for everyone. However they haven’t compromised on quality with an impressive haul of awards to prove it. It really is “proper cider”, being able to buy online is almost a nuisance because it means we might not head back to their very welcoming farm. However we have decided to return and next time we shall be bringing our own tasting glasses (you have been warned!). But thanks Sandfords for, we shall return.

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sandford orchards

Dorset

Dorset Nectar
So good we tried it twice! (actually we had two and a half pints but we weren’t driving and it was vital “research”). Dorset Nectar has been giving those pesky chaps over in Somerset a real run for their money and won a hatful of awards. Somerset might claim to be cider country but the guys at Dorset Nectar will challenge them to a taste off. Too close for us to call but we can certainly shout the virtues from the tree tops which had we have hung around the brewery much longer we might well have started doing just that.

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dorset nectar

Twisted Cider
Twisted Cider are men on a mission “We aim to challenge the commercially boring, mass produced ciders with our great tasting traditional cider”. Like a boozy Blues Brother they are on a mission and boy are they winning! If you like real cider brewed with Dorset sunshine and the type of dedication only men in sheds can provide it’s a joy that Twisted is now available from their website to be delivered across the UK.

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twisted cider

Purbeck Cider Company
Ah Purbeck, how did we drink thee, let us count the ways. With 5 fantastic cider varieties to sample we didn’t shirk our responsibilities and made a clean sweep. The perfect pear was of particular note although to be fair we’d happily head back to the Jurassic coast for another sample of any of Purbeck’s ciders. Thankfully with an online shop you don’t even need to leave home to do your own Purbeck taste test.

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purbeck

Somerset

Wilcox Cider
Ahhh Somerset, how do we love thee… Let us count the ciders.
Somerset is the home of cider and the local cider brewers are rightly proud of their heritage, for Wilcox that heritage goes back to 1868. Using traditional methods and Pink Lady, Dabinettt, Tom Putt and Pig’s Snout apple varieties for a traditional full fruity flavour of Somerset liquid-goodness Wilcox continues to provide proper local cider lovers with the perfect summer tipple.

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wilcox cider

Tricky Apple Cider
The Tricky chaps proclaim they are “…determined to preserve the art of cider making.” And if cider making is indeed an art form then their Tricky Cider should be kept in a gallery, locked in a glass case, under armed guard. However it’s not so we’d recommend you grab a bottle or two now before some rich American sticks it all in his private collection under bullet proof glass. Simply superb cider.

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tricky cider

Sheppy’s
Having grown up in Somerset the Sheppy family virtually have cider in their veins and it’s certainly at the core of their family tradition with a cider brewing heritage that stretches back over 200 years. If you’re a fan of proper English cider without the gimmicks then Sheppy’s is the real deal. What’s even better is they’re based not far from our Bath offices… We’ll be seeing you again soon Sheppy’s!

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sheppys

Perry’s
Made using 100% fruit juice and presses that have squeezed out over 14,000,000 pints Perry’s might be a little off the beaten track but for dedicated purveyors of the pint they are well worth hunting down. It’s like stepping back in time to see their museum and original brewing process which stands as a great testament to the fact that fancy ciders might come and go but real cider are here to stay. Parry’s we salute you, and now that we’ve found you… We’ll be back! (insert Arnold Cider-loving Schwarzenegger impression).

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perrys

Orchard Pig
“Grab a pig!” the boys at Orchard Pig invite anyone to enjoy a glass or three of their “hard core” cider (see what they did there?). Not only were we blown away with their great flavour but also their dedication to the brewing process. Brewed close to Glastonbury they also have a superb range of fruit juices with a little extra zip. Orchard Pig have taken ‘down on the farm’ Somerset brewing into the 21st century keeping traditional flavours. “Proper pints!”

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orchard pig

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