Real cider is a long-established traditional drink which is produced naturally from apples (perry is produced from pears) and is neither carbonated or pasteurised, i.e. Real cider and perry is essentially the fermented juice of the fruit with nothing added and nothing taken away. Click the active link to see a Powerpoint presentation on How to Make Cider.
Salt Hill Cider was established in 2008 by Greg Davies with the aim of redressing the severe shortage of good real cider in the area by turning unwanted local apples into a delicious Berkshire cider to supply local pubs and events.
The cider is made using fresh pressed juice from local eating and cooking apples and is naturally fermented using the wild yeast in the fruit.
Nothing is added or filtered out which produces a crisp tangy flavour eastern counties style cider which is quite different to the more well known Western "scrumpy" style ciders.
Salt Hill Cider has proved popular and sold out each year so production has been increased to meet demand and will hopefully be available at a number of local outlets throughout the year. The cider is available as naturally dry or medium sweet and has a strength of around 6.4% ABV.
Our most recently established branch area cider producer, Crazy Dave’s Cider, moved into new premises in Holyport in July 2017 due to the increase in local demand for real cider. When his wife said to him in August 2013, “Dave, get yourself a hobby”, he knew she was right.
Since then, Crazy Dave has moved from his garden shed in 2013, to Berkshire College of Agriculture, Burchetts Green, in 2015 and now into a much larger cider making facility in Holyport in July 2017.
He has steadily increased production from 80 litres in 2013 to 14,500 litres in 2016. He is currently setting up his new facility in order to start bottling his 2016 cider in advance of pressing and producing his 2017 target of 35,000 litres.
Not only does Crazy Dave’s collect local apples on an ‘apples for cider’ basis, he also buys in Somerset cider apples which are not available locally.
From his 2016 harvest, three ciders will be available very soon. The first two being a ‘dry’ and ‘medium’ Eastern Counties style cider made from apples collected from the local area. The third will be his ‘Berkshire Rebel’ – a fuller flavoured, golden, cider produced from blending his ‘bittersweet’ Somerset cider apples and local culinary apples.
His ‘Berkshire Rebel’ has already been on sale at local beer and cider festivals including venues such as The White Hart (Moneyrow Green), The Craufurd Arms (Maidenhead) and The Perseverance (Wraysbury).
We are fortunate in having several pubs in and around our area that regularly serve Real Cider or Perry. These are listed on our Real Cider & Perry Pubs page.