Ramborn Cider debuts in UK
Luxembourg-based Ramborn Cider is making its UK debut at Imbibe Live, with ciders and perries made from meadow orchards that are up to 300-years-old.
'In the English cider world, our ciders are more like the east counties' ciders, than those from the West Country,' Ramborn Cider's Adie Kaye told Imbibe.
'They're not that big, bittersweet, farmhouse scrumpy style, but crisp, acid-forward and fruity, based on a mix of culinary, table, dessert and cider apples.'
Luxembourg has lost 90% of its meadow orchards over the last 100 years. 'They're kind of like Europe's rainforests – each tree can be home to 1000 different species – we need to protect them,' he said.
Its bestselling Perry is made from pear trees that are 250- to 300-years-old.
'The Perry is very high in tannins and very astringent, so it starts on the nose like a white wine, it's sweet at the start and then by the end it's an extremely dry finish, more like a red wine,' said Kaye. 'It goes really well with smoked salmon and pink peppercorns, or roasted meats and game as well.'
Ramborn Cider is available to taste on Stand S116.
Sxollie launches Cripps single-varietal cider
South African cider producer Sxollie is rolling out its latest single-varietal, Cripps Pink Craft Cider.
The light, sessionable cider, available in 330ml bottles, has a sweet-sour flavour profile and is made with Cripps Pink eating apples (or Pink Ladies, as they're also known) for a natural sweetness.
'A lot of the UK's eating apples come from South Africa and that's what we use for our ciders, because they're naturally sweet, so we don't need to sweeten them,' said founder Karol Ostaszewski.
'We also use a single variant of apple, because it means you get the full flavour of that apple.'
A percentage of the profits from sales of the Cripps Pink Craft Cider goes to help female entrepreneurs in sub-Saharan Africa.
Sxollie Cider is available on Stand G118.
Craft Nectar creates first-ever crowdsourced cider
The UK's number one cider subscription company Crafty Nectar is branching out with its first own-brand cider, which is the result of crowdsourcing the opinions of over 1000 of its customers.
Produced in collaboration with Celtic Marches in Herefordshire, No7 is a well-balanced, medium-sweet cider with an abv of 5.1% and made with 100% apples.
Each year, Crafty Nectar intends to collaborate with a different cidermaker, and a different artist on the bottle artwork.
Taste Crafty Nectar's No7 is available to taste at Imbibe Live on Stand S116 and will be available at The Stables and independent pubs and restaurants from next month.
Cotswold Cider Co gives latest launch a lemongrass lift
The Cotswold Cider Company is introducing a cider made with 100% cider-apple-juice fermentation and infused with fresh lemongrass, aiming to provide a contrast to the ‘brash flavours of mass fruit ciders’.
TukTuk was created to be paired with pan Asian cuisine by the company’s founder and master cidermaker Rory Souter, who told Imbibe it complements the vibrant flavours and ‘cuts through the heat’ of spicy food.
‘In contrast to the brash flavours of mass fruit ciders, it’s really important to us that the blend complements, rather than fights the bittersweet cider apple base. If it doesn’t taste like cider anymore, then it’s gone too far,' said Souter.
‘The lemongrass top notes elevate the bittersweet cider apple base, delivering a fresh, invigorating cider with a citrusy zing.'
Clocking in at just 4% abv, TukTuk is Souter’s third blended cider and uses bittersweet and bittersharp cider apples, including Dabinett, Yarlington Mill, Michellin, Browns,and Vilberie. The medium, sparkling cider is available in 330ml bottles, and is recommended to be served ice cold with a slither of lime.
The Cotswold Cider Company is launching TukTuk exclusively to the on-trade at Imbibe Live. Check it out on Stand HA12.
Sheppy's hops aboard the low-abv band wagon
It’s official, the low-abv trend is here to stay, so we’re delighted to announce that craft cider brand Sheppy’s is launching its Low Alcohol Classic Cider at Imbibe Live.
Made with a blend of Somerset traditional and dessert cider apples, it weighs in at just 0.5% abv and emulates the medium-sweet taste profile of Sheppy's Classic Cider.
'During the production process, there's a real skill involved in maintaining the acidity and tannins,' said Sheppy's Mel Timmins.
'We add back natural apple juice and there's some dilution, but it's a delicate balance maintaining the profile of the cider.'
The low-alcohol sector is booming, with sales growing 30% in 2017, and a prediction that the category will be worth £300m within 10 years.
Taste Sheppy's new Low Alcohol Classic Cider and the rest of its range at Stand E41.
A legend is born at Brothers
Brothers Cider is introducing a new cider brand at Imbibe Live, based around the (newly created) legend of Shepton, the Somerset god of cider.
Produced at the company's Shepton Mallet cider mill, which Brothers reacquired in 2016, the cider is made from freshly squeezed and pressed apples and doesn't use concentrates or artificial flavourings. It is available in Original (4.5% abv) and Dark Fruit (4%), which uses blackberries and other dark fruit.
The character of Shepton, who looks like he accidentally wandered off the set of Game of Thrones, has been devised to 'lend a bit of personality and identity to the brand, and set it apart from our competitors,' according to Brothers' Michael McBride.
Have a taste of the god's most recent batch on Stand E120.