Simon started making his cider in around 2012 as an experiment. He used a very small hired press and produced 80 pints. He now produces 1,400.
Made in a typical East Anglian style, Simon’s cider is slightly cloudy. It has a sharp initial taste that “makes your ears laugh” and a fruity finish. It is wonderfully refreshing on its own but even better with a pork pie!
When Simon moved to Cambridgeshire in 1985 he worked as a plant operator, keeping drainage ditches clear around local farms. At that time his local area was still heavily planted with fruiting orchards. He would often fill a carrier bag of plums or apples from trees near where he was working. A lot of those orchards are gone now but little pockets of trees still remain. Some grow in field margins and some in the gardens of newer developments. And of course there are masses of fruit trees in older gardens.
If you have apples of any variety that you don’t use, please get in touch with Simon via his website. Simon particularly loves Russets, which make a wonderful cider.
Simon’s ciders and perries are available online or catch him at a local farmers’ market, such as St Ives in Cambridgeshire.
By Philip Seaman, Cambridgeshire editor