Craft cider maker and artisan distiller, Fowey Valley, has opened a new HQ on the Restormel Estate in Lostwithiel, ushering in a new era of expansion for the premium drinks producer.
The beautiful cider orchard in Golant on the banks of the river Fowey remains the heartland of the operation, and a source of raw ingredients; Fowey Valley’s award-winning cider is made from 100% juice from fresh Westcountry apples.
However, Founder Barrie Gibson and his small but dedicated team have now taken on extra commercial premises in Lostwithiel, allowing Fowey Valley to fulfil the growing demand for its artisan products and special experiences.
The new premises houses modern production facilities and a shop stocking the full range of products, including gift hampers; a programme of insightful tours, tastings and courses will also take place here starting in the autumn.
Barrie Gibson, who founded Fowey Valley Cidery in 2012, commented: “We’re thrilled to announce our expansion to the new site. With a wider range of products and greater demand for our cider and spirits than ever before, it didn’t come a moment too soon!”
He continued: “We can now let the apples grow in peace back in Golant, whilst we deal with production and cidery guests here. Our approach will remain based on small-batch production and traditional methods, but we’ll have the space and capacity to fulfil more national and international orders.”
Since 2012 the approach to making cider at Fowey Valley has changing very little; using the finest apples from the Golant orchards and others close by, juice is pressed and put into tanks before yeast is added and the cider begins the ageing process.
Some of the cider is bottled after a year, but the rest undergoes a secondary fermentation based on the ‘Champagne method’ to create Fowey Valley’s famous Sparkling Vintage Cider.
Barrie and the team also make spirits entirely from scratch (most gin distillers, for example, buy in a base spirit before adding their own botanicals) including Vodka, Gin, Cider Brandy, Eau de Vie and Pommeau – an apple aperitif.
Visitors to the new Fowey Valley HQ can gain a fascinating insight into the world of hand-crafted cider and spirits with a Cidery Tour or a Cider Making Class, and Gin Classes will be launched soon.
Barrie explained: “A lot of people are fascinated by a production process which starts with an apple, and ends with something as complex as our Oak Cask Matured Cider Brandy, or as refined as our Vintage Sparkling Cider. I’d love to say that we have secret methods at Fowey Valley but we’re too enthusiastic to keep anything to ourselves, so if you’re interested I’d highly recommend booking a tour or course!“.
To find out more about Fowey Valley products, or visiting the new HQ, visit www.foweyvalleycider.co.uk