[nafex] Re: Scrumpy

edforest2010 edforest55 at hotmail.com
Thu Dec 27 07:41:16 EST 2001

"Well, if that's the case, I have one more excuse to visit my friend 
in England this winter. From Doug's post it sounds like I haven't 
tried the real thing, as the stuff my friend bought me" . . . 
pause . . .
at six am he goes to the kitchen, opens the last of three bottles his 
friend bought from London labeled "Strong, extra dry" and tastes it.

"Well, I was about to say that in the first two bottles I hadn't 
detected any bitterness, but this last one, yes, slightly bitter. 
Excellent, I love it. Its made by a company named Westons. Maybe it is 
mass produced and not the real traditional stuff, so, yes, I am 
anxious to travel the backroads of England on a . . . hick . . . 
BTW, I think that the idea that beer and whiskey became more popular 
due to its non perishable nature could have a lot of merit, in fact, 
peers to me that's a huge advantage for city dwellers and large 
companies who need to keep a labor force "brewing" all year rather 
than just in the fall when the apples are ripe.
Kevin B

--- In nafex at y..., "woodard214" <dwoodard at b...> wrote:
> --- In nafex at y..., "Helga and Bert Dunn" <helbert at i...> wrote:
> > When in UK some years ago, I asked for 'scrumpi" in small town  
> taverns. My impression-bone dry, bitter, hugh in tannin[---just 
> superb!! In our party of three I was the only scrumpi enthusiat.
> > Have tried to duplicate it for some years- can only get 1/2 way 
> there- will keep trying. Have bought 6-7 store bought varieties, 
> IMO were near as good as scrumpi- why not?--sweet to start , and too 
> bland and_____ and ______- you get the idea
> > Bert
> In my reading the usual spelling was "scrumpy" said to be hard cider 
> made on the farms that produced the apples, for farm or local use, 
> very variable in quality.
> Bear in mind that what you drank in "small town taverns" in the UK 
> was probably made and sold for a local market with a tradition of 
> thousands of years of use of this beverage.
> What you bought in the stores was probably made for a mass market 
> unfamiliar with the product, made from juice of eating apples 
> available on the international market plus some chemical additives. 
> Also, my understanding is that processing apples for the juice 
> are grown with more nitrogen than for the fresh eating market as 
> of the processing market will accept a lower quality of apple.
> Traditional cider making in Britain involves apples of traditional 
> cider cultivars, and I would expect that somewhat traditional 
> involving a relatively low level of nitrogen fertilization would 
> produce the best quality as they do in eating apples. 
> Planting the traditional cider cultivars involves considerable risk
> as if the market turns out not to be there after 6-10 years of 
> developing the orchard, the only market would be the commercial 
> market. I don't know whether the traditional cider cultivars have 
> productivity to compete in this market. I suspect not.
> I suspect though that from the quality point of view the specialty 
> fresh juice market could absorb juice from traditional cider 
> cultivars. In the past one small Ontario producer of fresh juice 
> eating apples (sold in supermarkets) added a little extra acid and I 
> think tannin to give the product a little extra bite. I preferred 
> I would expect a quality product either way, from a small producer 
> with a desire to produce quality. I don't expect high quality from 
> producers for the mass market. The high and increasing concentration 
> in the supermarket trade suggests that farm gate sales or specialty 
> stores would be the only reliable market as supermarket chains like 
> to sell a new product in all their stores or none.
> Doug Woodard
> St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada

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