Sunday, 27 January 2008

Sheila's Comes Good!

Sheila is an kind lady with a few apple trees. She lives next door to a customer of mine and has a sharp (cookers) tree and a sweet (eaters) tree. When asked if I could use some of her apples for my cider she took me to the bottom of her garden and pointed out where I would find a crab apple...
Sheila lives next to a filled-in railway cutting (the former LD&ECR) and sure enough, spared by the infill (only just), was a small bush/tree bearing the smallest greenest bitterest apples you could imagine. Hmm, I thought, could be interesting to make a 'Pomme Sheila's' using the 3 unknown varieties.

I took some apples with me and later bit into a portion of each to combine the flavours. Hmm... definitely could work...

Well as it turned out (collecting apples from here there and everywhere takes up a lot of time!) for one reason or another I only got enough juice from Sheila's to fill 2 demijohns. I think the birds must have got to most of 'em before me!

As I'm tight on space here, the cat pen is used as an apple store from September onwards, and, as I was getting together some of the remaining fruit (which by now is very soft or rotting - I had a lot of surplus sweet this year), I noticed that the top of the air lock from one of 10a and 10b (Sheila's) was missing. Argh! Horror! Had I knocked it off when moving trays? Had it been off for weeks? Only one thing for it...
In the kitchen I carefully prised out the rubber bung holding the airlock and with a sterilised turkey baster sucked up a sample to deposit in a small wine glass.

Beautifully clear... nice golden colour; quite dark... smells okay... then I put it to my lips... WOW!! It tasted wonderfully smooth... much better than expected too.
So now I'm looking forward to bottling this 2 gallons. I'll make a Special Label too.

cheers all

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