Wednesday, 8 October 2008

Cider Jar of the Month - Norbury's Black Bull Cider

Black Bull Cider from the Norbury Cider Co was one of the first 'real' ciders I ever came across. Camping and partying in the Black Mountains of Wales occupied many of my weekends in the early 90's, and we always seemed to drive past the distinctive roadside sign for Norbury's Black Bull Cider on the journeys there and back.

The sign is long gone now, but anyone who would have taken the road from Worcester to Hereford in those days may well remember the huge white barrel, lofted high on a platform and bearing the image of the company's Black Bull logo.

The Norburys started making cider around 1980 following the slump in the homegrown fruit market as a result of the UK joining the EEC. The ciders are made from a range of traditional cider apples blended with dessert/culinary varieties grown in their own orchards, and are well made and clean tasting. The 'Black Bull' title is derived from the French 'noir' (black) and 'boeuf' (bull) from which the Norbury family take their name. I think it makes for a handsome and authentically 'rural' image on cider jars such as this one.

A range of bottled Black Bull ciders can be found locally at Brockleby's Farm Shop near Melton Mowbray, and Norbury also attend several East Midlands Farmers Markets.

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