Based on a farm in South Somerset, we sit amongst 160 acres of cider apple orchards at the base of Burrow Hill, a famous Somerset landmark with a single sycamore on top that looks out across the Somerset Levels.The farm has been pressing cider for the past 150 years and distilling the cider into Somerset Cider Brandy since 1989.
It has long been recognised that for growing apples for fermenting, England has three “vintage” areas where the soil conditions and climate are deemed best for growing cider apples, known as "terroir"; all of these areas are in Somerset. At Burrow Hill, Kingsbury Episcopi, we are right in the middle of one, the others being around Wedmore and Baltonsborough.
Apples are the starting point for both our cider and our Somerset Cider Brandy and at Burrow Hill, we believe it is vital to know their origins. All the apples we ferment come from Somerset, the majority from our own orchards but also from small local growers. We grow more than 40 varieties of vintage cider apples with names such as Brown Snout, Stoke Red, Harry Masters and the legendary Kingston Black.
The art of blending different types of fruit is key to the craft of cider making and distilling. At Burrow Hill, this is the responsibility of Tim Stoddart and Julian Temperley who between them have over 50 years experience of making cider.