Orange’s premium craft cider maker, Small Acres Cyder, are celebrating the 2021 harvest with the release of a new cider, the Small Acres Heritage Blend. This new blend joins the Small Acres stable, which includes the new release of the Small Acres Norfolk Still.
Small Acres Cyder was established in 2007 with the vision to produce a range of ciders made with locally grown cider apples, utilising traditional and authentic production methods. Drawing on their experience in the UK, the founders were frustrated at the lack of premium ciders in Australia and so Small Acres Cyder was born.
New co-owner Nick Geoghegan is drawing on similar experiences. Nick took the reins prior to the 2021 harvest and hit the ground running. “It has been a challenging, but exciting 12 months since we took over the business and started making these ciders. The founders did a fantastic job establishing the brand as one of Australia’s premium cider makers and we’re looking forward to building on what they have achieved.”
The new release includes their inaugural ‘Heritage Blend’, the first new cider to be released by the Geoghegan family. “The Heritage Blend continues the tradition of specialised cider making in Australia,” explained Nick. “This cider is made from 100 per cent Orange-grown apples and combines the rich flavours of bittersweet French and English cider varieties, with the lightness of Australia’s Pink Lady apples.”
“After the drought harvest of 2020, it was a relief to harvest the plentiful 2021 crop from our cider-apple orchard. We saw this great chance to produce a cider that was both a traditional cider, but more accessible for our customers. The Heritage Blend is a medium dry style, and a great step along the cider journey toward the likes of our highly awarded Cat’s Pyjamas.”
The Small Acres Norfolk Still Cider, one of the cider maker’s original ciders, is a medium dry English style still cider. “It reflects the style of cider produced in the eastern counties of England, with fresh red apple flavours and a crisp finish. Without the bubbles (that many expect from cider) it’s a popular surprise when people first enjoy the smoothness of the Norfolk Still.”
The 2020 Small Acres Norfolk Still was made from a blend of Orange region apples. “With the cool climate, the high elevation (892m above sea level) and the rich red basalt soils of Mount Canobolas the apples produce full flavoured ciders with crisp natural acidity.”
Small Acres Cyder is the only Australian cider maker that has been awarded both Champion Australian Cider and Champion Australian Perry awards at the Australian Cider Awards. These awards complement the producer’s consistent award of Best Small Producer (2017, 2018 and 2019). This year Small Acres Cyder was awarded the Best in Show Trophy for their 2017 Pommeau fortified cider at the Red Hill Cider Awards, joint Best in Class Trophy for their 2017 Cat’s Pyjamas and a bronze medal for their 2020 Norfolk Still.