Cider press party

by Jessie K on October 30, 2012

One of the highlights of fall is attending our friends Brendan and Susan’s annual cider press party at their farm, Stone House Farm here in Virginia.

Tons and tons of apples are squashed…

…using Brendan’s turn of the century cider press he’s retrofitted to make like new. (And by “turn of the century,” I don’t mean 2001…I mean 1901. Brendan is a mechanical engineer turned farmer who has a serious knack for equipment.)

The apples (Winesaps) are loaded into the press…

…squashed to smithereens and come out the other end as the freshest apple juice you will ever have.

Everyone brought jugs, bottles and carboys to be filled with the fresh cider for home.

The day was brilliant and blustery — ideal cider pressing conditions.

And it wouldn’t be Virginia without an impromptu jam session. I think they busted out Johnny Cash’s “Folsom Prison” here.

Everyone had their fill of apples, apples and more apples.

The apple pulp is a precious resource. Not only does it make fresh, nutritious food for our broiler chickens which makes for better tasting meat but it can be combined with yeast and sugar to make a mash for fermentation — alcohol, baby!

With our admittedly giganto haul of juice, Jake and I are brewing 5 different varieties of hard apple cider. They should be ready to quaff sometime around the holidays.  Mmmmm!

Thanks again, Brendan and Susan, for another primo pressing party.

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