Busi­ness is brew­ing

Mar­itime Ex­press Cider on track in Kentville

Annapolis Valley Register - - NEWS - KINGSCOUNTYNEWS.CA KENTVILLE, N.S. Sara.Eric­s­son@Kingscountynews.ca

The lat­est craft brew­ing busi­ness to set up shop in Kings County is on track to in­tro­duce Kentville to a new way of en­joy­ing its fa­mous ap­ples.

Mar­itime Ex­press Cider has opened its doors in Kentville and will of­fer cus­tomers a taste of ciders made from ap­ples sourced from its own back­yard.

Owner and brewer Jimi Doidge says the busi­ness, lo­cated in­side the his­toric Corn­wal­lis Inn, is on track to a boom­ing first week of busi­ness. He and busi­ness part­ner Scott Hearn say so far, so good.

“It’s been great – pretty busy, for keep­ing quiet about it. We just put our ‘ Open’ ban­ner on dis­play out­side, and peo­ple started com­ing in,” says Doidge.

The cidery launched a soft open­ing Oct. 24 and has since been of­fer­ing its Fly­ing Bluenose dry cider – “it’s crisp, clean and very dry,” says Doidge – and a semi-sweet cider called the Day­liner, in both tast­ing and full­glass sizes.

“That one is a bit sweeter. We don’t call it fully sweet, be­cause then peo­ple might think it’s full of sugar. It’s more ap­ple-y, and smoother,” says Doidge.

The cidery is equipped to fill and sell growlers for cus­tomers, and al­ready has an­other cider ready to start serv­ing next week – rhubarb, which Doidge says he’s re­ally about.

It’s been a solid start, con­sid­er­ing the busi­ness nearly avoided be­ing with­out enough tanks to pro­duce at ca­pac­ity.

“We had our last fer­ment­ing tank ar­rive, and it was too tall for our brew­ing space. We had to send it back… but when it ar­rived we put cider in right away, and have been go­ing since then,” says Doidge, who added he just put 4,000 litres of fresh juice to fer­ment in the tanks Oct. 26.

Doidge and Hearn plan to cre­at­ing hopped and win­ter cider va­ri­eties, and to start serv­ing snacks like char­cu­terie boards soon at the cidery. They are cur­rently serv­ing a large se­lec­tion of Nova Sco­tia- pro­duced craft beers along­side their cider and say see­ing peo­ple try their prod­ucts for the first time is re­ward­ing.

“We’ve been find­ing a good mix of peo­ple who like the sweeter cider, and who pre­fer the dry. We even see peo­ple who think they’ll pre­fer one, and find it’s the other they like bet­ter,” says Doidge.

The part­ners will host the cidery’s grand open­ing Nov. 17, and will con­tinue tweak­ing small fin­ishes un­til then, as well as in­tro­duc­ing peo­ple to their cider.

“That’s re­ally what it’s about – to be able to talk with peo­ple who come in and ex­plain it to them,” says Doidge.

SARA ERIC­S­SON

Jimi Doidge is the co-owner and head brewer of cider at Mar­itime Ex­press Cider, a new tap­room and cidery that just opened its doors in Kentville.

SARA ERIC­S­SON

“We had our last fer­ment­ing tank ar­rive, and it was too tall for our brew­ing space. We had to send it back… but when it ar­rived we put cider in right away, and have been go­ing since then,” says Jimi Doidge.

SARA ERIC­S­SON

Mar­itime Ex­press Cider cur­rently has two ciders – the Fly­ing Bluenose and the Day­liner – plus sev­eral Nova Sco­tia-pro­duced craft beers to try.

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