Tuesday 28 September 2010

New apples for old cider...

It would appear that today is a good day for cider apple varieties here in the UK. Over the last 25 years, the NACM (National Association of Cider Makers), together with Liz Copas (Pomologist... that is someone who knows a lot about apples, not someone who reads your fortunes from the pips!) have been growing a number of new varieties. These were whittled down to 29 new types.

So, whats wrong with the old ones? Well, some are pretty hard to grow and very tempramental - round here, Kingston Black and Crimson King are pretty much non starters (although they grow well elsewhere). Others don't yield very well; though I can't think of one at the moment! Dabinett is probably pretty shy on Hampshire soil (well, Durley soil). These new varieties are trying to tackle these problems and produce a well balanced, problem resistant apple that makes great cider.

It has to be said (and Andrew Lea, ex-Long Ashton colleague of Liz Copas has mentioned it a few times on the Cider Workshop), these will almost certainly only be available to fairly large commercial concerns for the time being. However, you only have to look at varieties like 'Bulmers Norman' to see that this will, hopefully, filter down to us mere mortals sooner or later.

There is a great account of this in a Guardian article [click the link to access]

I would love to try cider made from a few of these:

Lizzy; Prince William; Amelia; Amanda; Jenny; Hastings; Connie; Helen's Apple; Three Counties; Jane; Tina; Early Bird; Vicky; Naomi; Nicky; Angela; Gilly; Willy; Joanna; Maggie; Hannah; Jean; Sally; Fiona; Shamrock; Tracey; Eleni; Betty and Debbie

I think Betty is probably my favourite name... although Willy isn't far off:-)

1 comment:

  1. I'd love to try a Gilly/Willy blend. I'm sure Prince William would 'Go' with most of these, or am I sailing a little too close to treason there...