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Bottled it.

We really bottled it yesterday, when we bottled 29 bottles of cider and 89 bottles of apple juice. The cider came from one of the barrels that we made last year . We'd opened it a few days ago and it had to be bottled to save it from going to waste.
Once cider meets the air, you only have a few days in which to either drink it, or pasteurise it and get it into an airtight container.
The apple juice came from the apples that we pressed yesterday.
This deep feed wheelbarrow makes a super container for washing the apples in. The apples destined for apple juice should be picked directly off the tree and shouldn't need washing. The apples used for cider making can however, come off the floor and can be washed ready for the apple mill.

My youngest son Rob working the press.

The bottling machine.

You have to pasteurise if you bottle cider or apple juice. Here are our pasteurisers in action.

Yesterdays efforts produced these.

We bought an encapsulator last week and we use it to put the plastic heat shrink wraps over the lids. We think that our bottles look quite a bit more professional now.

You've seen 'Young Rob', now heres the old man. Here you see us posing for an article that a friends husband is doing for one of the smallholding magazines. I'm not really a poser. Surely you can see that, by the style statement that I was making with my magnificently quaffered hair?


And the apron John      

Very good pics , the bottles look very professional and the pigs are enjoying the pulp as well  

It's looking very professional, and well done Kaz, so is Bodger!

The bottles do look very pro.

As for you being a bit of a "poser"  

Next time we are in Wales we will call in and taste a couple of bottle.

You'd be welcome. You've been missed.

bodger wrote:
You'd be welcome. You've been missed.

Thanks mate have a PM.

THAT is looking great    

Since Karen went on her apple juice making course the other week, we've started to hold the bottles of apple juice at a set temperature for longer when pasteurising them. It means that the whole process is taking considerably longer than it used to, so I've looked at getting the next size of pasteuriser up from Vigo.
The pasteurisers in the photograph cost 195.00 each and will take fourteen 75cl bottles at a time and I was shocked to find out that the next size up from Vigo, which fits just over a hundred bottles costs, now wait for it................................................. The price? A piddly 3500 plus vat!    

Needless to say, I wont be buying one anytime soon. The bigger machine uses 9kw of power while the smaller ones that we have, use 2kw each. If we have to up our pasteurising capacity, then we'll be buying a couple more of the smaller ones and be able to boost our capacity to 56 bottles at a time. That price seems ridiculously but the company virtually has a monopoly here in the UK on wine and cider making equipment.


mmmmmm cider now i really envy you with that many bottles in view lol

I've got barrels of the stuff mate.

Just asking,

Ive secured some funding for training (as Im being made redundant) - can I ask about the course karen went on - the juicing course.  was this at Pershore?

If I can secure some training for free then Id be daft not to.  Juice isnt really something I want to do, but Ive done the 4 day cider making at ledbury...

Yes, I did the 2 day Apple Juice Course at Pershore - I found it very useful

Hi Bodger,
I wondered if you could give me the make and where your bottling machine and encapsulator were bought from.
The results in the photos look great.
I've just about sorted our licencing and registration so should be able to start selling this year. Will put more details in the "Trade" section when we start
Many thanks.

The bottling machine we picked up second hand for 300. I think that we dropped on really lucky to get it. Its an old model that was supplied originally by VIGO. New, they cost an arm and a leg.
The encapsulater and the shrink wraps to go with it, we got direct from VIGO.

OK, thanks for the reply  

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