It is pretty cold in the cider shed right now, but this is a fascinating time of year in the craft cider calendar.
The delicious juice we pressed from the bountiful 2020 apple harvest has been busily fermenting. Paul keeps a close eye on the progress of the fermentation. He racks off the fermenting juice into clean tanks at appropriate times, leaving the lees (sediment) behind. We also sample the developing ciders to make sure all is going well. By sampling regularly we can also formulate a plan of the various ciders we will be able to create.
Some tanks contain co-ferments, which means that more than one variety of apple was pressed together and the juices are fermenting together. We are particularly excited about our Bramley / Chisel Jersey co-ferment.
Other tanks contain fermenting juice pressed from a single variety of apple. Some of this is destined to create single-variety cider, or we might blend it with other single varieties or co-ferments prior to bottling. This planning and sampling is a particularly creative activity and one that we love.
The only essential task that we don’t really enjoy in the cold weather is washing down the tanks!