Neil Worley’s makes cider in the area of Great Britain called Somerset. Climb the high hill at the farm and your can see the Bristol Channel. It is a remote location by UK standards and the soil at the farm is only 3 inches in depth before you hit limestone. Thus, instead of growing apples at the farm, the apples are brought up the hill from the orchard at the old Taunton Cider Mill.
Neil traveled to Portland Oregon in February 2016 to speak at the United States Association of Cider Makers annual event called CiderCon, which is were I caught up with him to chat about the cider making technique called “keeving”.
What is Keeving? It is a process, whereby the nutrients of the sweet cider (before fermentation) are removed from the juice. During this process the nutrients float to the top of the juice forming a brown cap that Neil says looks like a “brown omelette”. The brown cap is punctured and the juice is rack over into a new container to then be fermented into cider.
As there are no nutrients in the juice that was keeved, the yeast will not digest all the sugars in the juice thus leaving a refreshing cider that has a dry yet sweet flavor profile.
Worley’s Cider has won numerous awards and Neil is highly regarded for his cider making.
If you would like to visit Worley’s, there is a good chance that they can be found at a local fair or outdoor market on the weekends. In essence, try to set up the visit ahead of time.
The full transcript of this chat with Neil including all the details he shared on keeving is available for patrons of Cider Chat. Go to Cider Chat Patreon Page and find our how you can receive your copy of this informative chat with Neil discussing the technical aspect and tricks of keeving.
Thank you to Cider Chat’s founding sponsor “Cider Cellars Importers” – importing UK cider to the US! Listen to Linda’s promo in this chat as she pronounces each apple variety.