We have been welcoming more guests to Armagh Cider Company for cidery tours as part of the celebration of Armagh Food & Cider Weekend.
Based at Ballinteggart Estate, in the heart of the orchard county, we have been growing apples for four generations since the 1800’s. Our tours took guests through our beautiful orchards, which span 80 acres and have been nurtured by the family for over 100 years, where they learned about apple growing and production. They even got to pick and taste some of our 30 varieties of delicious apples themselves.
As well as meeting our Armagh Cider Company family and hearing about our passion and commitment to the industry, they got to tour the mill and the bottling hall where they were shown our complete artisan process of making multi-award winning cider ‘from blossom to bottle’, which produces a superior quality product with more texture and flavour than mass produced products. Of course, no tour would be complete without some delicious apple tart, tea and coffee and naturally, a bottle of cider to enjoy!
During the tours, our guests also had the opportunity to soak up the historic surroundings of Ballinteggart House and learn about the history of Armagh Cider as well as hear about the Bramley Apple and its unique PGI Status (Protected Geographical Indication), a legal status awarded by the European Commission to protect and promote the names of high quality regional foods and drinks and guard against their imitation.
Much like the grapes used to make Champagne, only Bramley apples grown in the designated area within the Archdiocese of Armagh can truly claim to be the genuine article. It is formal recognition that the cleaner, sharper and slightly tarter taste of the Armagh Bramley clearly distinguishes it from apples grown in other orchards in the United Kingdom and Ireland.
PGI status is a stamp of approval and credibility, and a testament to the quality of the Armagh Bramley apple. It also serves to reward the longstanding efforts, dedication and experience of local growers and all those who work with the Armagh Bramley apple and really puts Armagh Cider on the map!