WHOSE CIDER ARE YOU ON?
Fermented farmhouse beverages are going global.
Apint of cider on a hot day is among the most enjoyable, thirst-slaking treats ever. With climate change fully under way, we give you the juice on the key points you need to know about the alcoholic apple beverage, from tree to glass.
Serve it right Cider is typically served in tulip-shaped pint glasses. A thick-stemmed one like Dartington Crystal’s won’t warm in your hands and is harder to knock over than daintier styles. dartington.co.uk
How strong are we talking? 1.2%–8.5% ABV. Any stronger and it cannot be classified as cider under UK law. Hence, ciders made on the Continent may be stronger.
What the hell is scrumpy? The serious stuff; very dry, punchy in taste and powerful in effect. Originally, “scrumping” is a countryside word for stealing fruit from a farmer’s orchard.
Enjoy cider with… Cheese is a hands-down winner as an accompaniment. Most suited are a mature British cheddar or a rich West Country Camembert.
Serious drinking The “real” cider movement recognises authentic “farmhouse” ciders as a traditional drink produced naturally from pressed and fermented apples and is neither carbonated nor pasteurised. Meanwhile, the long-established Campaign for Real Ale acknowledges ciders with at least 90 percent apple juice, which must also be non-carbonated and unpasteurised.
1 Apples are crushed into a mushy pulp. 2 The pulp is pressed to extract the juice. 3 The juice is strained and placed into a cask to allow fermentation. THE CIDER-MAKING PROCESS 4 The cider is racked, separated from the dead yeast (lees), to clear up the cloudy colour. 5 Secondary fermentation in a fresh cask (sugar may be added; the more that’s added will increase the resulting alcohol content).