author. Ashleigh Howells
Karenza Aval - The Love Apple Company from The Cornish Orchard
Karenza Aval meaning the Love Apple seems very fitting as this is certainly a product made with love and I smile at how the thought of how this cider is so fitting for the south west - a hub for lovers of the cider apple. A perfect workshop for the laid back Port Eliot-ers who sit in interested silence awaiting the samples of scrumpy cider, perhaps the sole motivation for attending this tent as who wouldn't succumb to the promise of exquisite locally grown and made alcohol! What are festivals for after all?
A keen foodie I was excited for a workshop based on the very thing my world centres around and I was even more elated to discover that The Cornish Orchard has single handily saved the Cornish apple from extinction.
Created by crushing, hydraulically pressing and fermenting apples using the natural yeast found within them the cider here sure packs a kick!
Apple juice for the non-drinkers and those under the age of 18 was the best ever example of traditional, and most importantly I'm told, pasteurized soft drink, gently and quenching for the pallet and something I can imagine would taste fabulous with pork....if of course I were a meat eater!
A more modern drink is juice we are told as our ancestors produced the stronger kind of apple strain. My preference was the drier variety, and I heartily enjoyed two samples!
I am also delighted to learn, as a gluten intolerant myself, that Karenza Aval's unpasteurised cider vinegar, taken bizarrely as a natural medicine for a seemingly never-ending list of ailments, is gluten free, created of course from apples rather than gluten-rich malt...you learn something new everyday!
I am surprised to be told as I question Frankie, owner of Karenza Aval, that despite the fact that The Cornish do not use inorganic fertilisers/pesticides they are unable to be classed as 'organic' as they do not pay a fee to the organic soil association that allows them to do so. Therefore they are not permitted to use the term 'organic' on any of their produce, a shame it seems to me, with the rising obsession with purely organic products among many social circles today. These are of course however, traditional honest products, and traditionally British I feel is an equally as excellent selling point as this popular term.
It seems then that the Cornish apple once again over its rival the Kent Apple feels safe, secure and sure to stay for decades ahead. And after tasting the best of it today, I for one can raise a glass to that.