Ingredients: Apples. That’s it. Nothing else is needed to make Real Cider – no sulphites, no flavouring, no glucose-fructose syrup.
Once the apples are picked and washed they are milled and pressed between sheets of muslin to extract the juice. The remaining fruit pulp is a good pig food.
The sugars in the juice ferment into alcohol by the action of natural yeasts on the fruit, so the flavour and alcohol level can vary year-on-year even on apples from the same orchard.
Once the cider has matured and developed it can be racked off into barrels ready for sale. Some ciders have added flavour from natural ingredient like strawberries, raspberries or ginger, but brightly-coloured fruity pop full of flavourings like they sell in supermarkets is a definite no-no.
What about Perry? Simple – start with pears instead of apples. Perry pears are mainly grown in Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Gloucestershire – they aren’t nice to eat but they make a great drink!
What about pear cider? There is no such thing! If it’s cider then it’s made from apples. If it’s made from pears then it’s perry. If your local shop sells a product named ‘Pear Cider’ then it’s either perry, or cider with pear flavouring.
The cider bar is open all day until 11pm as a popular part of the Beer Festival.