Well, it is time to ‘fess up, we make apple juice.
It all started out as a bad season for black spot, a cosmetic issue that apples can be affected by. They still taste good, but customers won’t buy them. In fact, there are lots of cosmetic issues that affect organic fruit. Little bumps, dimples, some russeting on the skin. The alternative is to sell them as juice fruit, but receiving $100 a bin for certified organic apples that cost at least half that to pick, and twice that to grow, doesn’t appeal to us.
And so, up against the wall, facing a season of lost revenue, we took the plunge, bought some equipment and had a go at pressing our own juice. From that first taste we were amazed at how good it was, how each apple’s unique flavour came through in the juice, and couldn’t believe that every apple juice we had ever consumed before this had all tasted, well, so much like one another.
We tried lots of different things along the way and were told we wouldn’t succeed because it wasn’t in anyone’s interest to help us. But despite that we persevered and have been quietly selling our single variety apple juices for the last couple of years.
We only use fruit we would be happy to eat, all those apples that folks can’t believe a supermarket would refuse. We put it in glass, because who wants more plastic in their lives (not to mention who doesn’t need another bottle for homemade passata)? And we pasteurise it quickly and cool it quickly, to preserve the unique flavour of the apple that’s on the label.
At the moment we have Jonagold juice in abundance, we have done a limited run of Cox’s Orange Pippin under our Heritage label, and soon plan to add more Braeburns and Pink Ladies to the mix.
We have trialled both 1L and 250ml bottles in the past, however at the moment we are focused on the 1L bottles as people move to consume more at home. We have these (as well as our apples) available with our good friends at Unpacked in Kingston and are now looking for more stockists.
And as a kid who tried our juice at a festival one day was overheard to say “No mum, it’s not apple juice, it’s the juice from an apple”. And we think that’s the difference.