Our driest cider will attract those looking for a more traditional style cider. The blend is dominated by bittersweet cider apples whose rich tannins are balanced by the fruity aromatics of Okanagan dessert apples
Left Field Cider is a family owned business making traditional English-style cider in the heart of BC’s interior. The Garthwaite family has been in the ranching business for three generations and their recent venture into the cider industry truly did come from straight out of nowhere. It started with a random idea and a bucket in a small Kitsilano kitchen. While living in Vancouver, Kate had the notion to make a small batch of cider. After an initial attempt resulting in an overwhelming failure, she stumbled upon a weeklong cidermaking course being held at the University of Washington. She was hooked and the wheels started turning. She bought a small apple press and recruited her first cider devotee, her dad Gord.
Together they made their first batch of cider using dessert apples and some small crabapples from their neighbour’s trees. They used this cider to lure their next victim, Kate’s sister Theresa, and a cider dream was born. Theresa and Gord enrolled in the same cidermaking course and Kate headed off to England to learn how to make cider at the source. Fifty percent of the world’s cider comes from a handful of counties in England, so it only made sense to make the move. Kate spent a year apprenticing under a well-known craft cider maker and was exposed to England’s ‘Real’ cider movement. ‘Real’ cider is made from fresh pressed apples without artificial sweeteners, concentrates or flavourings. ‘Real’ Cider must contain at least 85% juice. Unlike commercial ciders that are made from high fructose concentrates, artificial flavourings and water, ‘Real’ cider highlights the natural characteristics of the apple.
The family’s experience in England solidified their desire to start making ‘Real’ cider back in British Columbia. Turning a hayfield into an orchard and a barn into a ciderhouse, Left Field Cider Co. started their first year of commercial production in 2011 blending English and French cider varieties with BC dessert apples. After a successful debut at the 2012 Okanagan Fest-of-Ale, where Left Field Cider was awarded Best Beverage, they began distribution in the Thompson Okanagan and Greater Vancouver area.