Elderflower picking

A fine afternoon today picking elderflower on the farm, dodging rain showers and scaring the cows, even managed to flush a deer out of the long grass! I collected around 10kgs of flower heads and currently have them steeping in a barrel of water, hopefully enough to last the summer.

In cider news we are moving on to a new medium as the previous picked from an orchard in Baltonsborough has now run out. In years to come we will have a consistent cider which we call ‘medium’ but for this year, as it is our first pressing, we have to work with what we have. The good news is that the new medium is also very good, still a little cloudy, but balanced in tannins with a good bittersweet flavour. It’s a base of Dabinett and Yarlington Mills, with a blend from other cider apples on top. We will be offering this carbonated in our kegs, and as a medium and dry cider available in bag in box.

Our new or rather second hand steam cleaner has also arrived, which has already revolutionised our cleaning, especially dealing with the kegs. We managed to find an industrial sized steam pressure washer for a reasonable price which is now going to do a lot of the heavy cleaning work from now on. I will be very happy to reduce the number of hot caustic washes we have to do, it’s nasty stuff to work with! Bring in an old chest freezer which will now become our bottle pasteurising tank, and we are looking good to finally start getting our new ciders into bottles and out there into the shops.

Looking forward to the festival season finally getting underway, we’re going to try and get our cider out there and into as many festivals as we can. If you know a local festival which you would like to see our cider at, please do get in touch and let me know, I would love to hear from you!

Matt Gillett