Friday, 3 September 2010

First Harvest


The wonderful Indian summer means that the apples have galloped ahead and are falling - harvest number one starts tomorrow.
The trees are biannual and 08 seems like a long time ago. Then it was lots of nerves and stress, using a wheely bin to transport the apples, a third of a ton in the back of the car per trip, creaking suspension (the car that is). This year we have the tractor to shift the apples down the hill and a Land Rover and trailer to cart them off for crushing at the Orchard Pig cellars.
Can't wait to pick up the juice later next week - it will already be frothing away - wild yeasts = very wild fermentation. I think I'll bottle some quickly in Champagne bottles for a bit of fruity early low alcohol sparkle, it'll be interesting to see how far it goes.
Coincidently the man from Customs and Excise called round today - the first 7000 litres of cider are duty free, this was as farms used to pay their workers with it - god bless her majesty!
After the cider harvest, we'll use any remaining apples for Jam along with the damsons and blackberries. There are also hundreds of sloes and so there'll be sloe gin on the go after the first frost.
I'm sure there was something else to pick but it seems to have slipped my mind, something to do with vines....