Brewer Bytes with Westons Cider
An Interview with Ian Lewis, Head of Marketing
Posted on 8/6/2013 by Chops
Back in 1878, a man named Henry Weston quietly carried on the tradition of making cider and perry in the heart of Herefordshire, England. In 1880, Henry decided to commercialize his much loved endeavor. The rest, you might say, is history. Today the Westons Cider company (H. Weston & Sons Limited) is a pillar of the cider community. They craft over 150 different ciders and perrys and export to over 40 countries. BrewChief recently caught up with Ian Lewis, Head of Marketing at Westons Cider, who provided some interesting insights into the cider industry.
What are your favourite ciders outside of your own?
Whilst I don't think that you can beat a cold pint of Stowford Press on a hot summers day or a bottle of Henry Westons Vintage cider with a BBQ feast, I'm quite partial to a Henneys Frome Valley cider, like Westons it's a premium cider made to a traditional recipe in the heart of Herefordshire.
What are your favourite cider styles?
I prefer a slightly drier cider style such as a bottle of Henry Westons extra-dry sparkling cider.
Where is your favourite place to enjoy a cold pint?
The Old Bulls Head in Woodhouse Eaves is a great country pub house and eatery house. They have a fantastic selection of top quality drinks and serve real homemade food. Its a great place to stop by for a pint, read the papers and chill out or to book a table and enjoy their simple but very tasty food.
How do you feel about cider reviewing and its impact on the industry?
Anything that raises awareness of the breadth and variety of ciders available for the consumer is a good thing. There is so much more available than just mass produced generic fizzy factory ciders and this is something that the consumer needs educating on.
What is the best thing about being a part of the cider industry?
The cider industry is an exciting and vibrant industry which is receiving growing interest from both our customers and our consumers which makes it a great industry to work in, as does the fact that it is incredibly friendly.
If you could change one thing about the cider industry what would it be?
I would change the media perception of the category as it's not all about binge drinking on park benches. Cider is a historic industry full of quality craft suppliers making premium craft ciders that are enjoyed responsibly. At Westons for example we have been making cider in Herefordshire since 1878 to the same recipe and are committed to building upon our heritage to enhance our quality ciders.
Do you have anything else that you would like to add?
Cider dates back to Roman times and is one of the longest running industries in the UK. There are approximately 480 cider makers making around 1.5bn litres of cider, employing direct or indirectly over 9,000 people in rural communities through farming, production and distribution. There are also nearly 18,000 acres of British apples and pears orchards committed to supporting the industry for the long term.