Situated in the Ceres Valley in the heart of the Western Cape farmlands, local farmstead Loxtonia launched its first all-natural premium range of artisanal ciders, which hit the market in October 2018. Loxtonia Cider is free of any preservatives and artificial additives and is made from hand-picked apples, which are freshly pressed and naturally fermented, bringing to life their key philosophy ‘Orchard to Bottle’.
Owned by the Whitfield family since 1990, Loxtonia Farm exports apples, pears and plums worldwide while also supplying a small percentage of fruit to the local South African market. Founder and head cider maker of Loxtonia Cider, Larry Whitfield realised he could turn this into a two-fold passion project by using the juice from the apples to become the first Cidery in Ceres.
The art of making fine apple cider first took place at Loxtonia Farm in 2013, when the family run farmstead identified a gap in the South African market. Larry started doing research on blending apple cultivars on the farm, after travelling to different cider making regions to gain further insight. Loxtonia Cider’s marketing manager Ali Whitfield adds, ‘We then worked towards producing a quality product different to those currently on the market which still remained true to our commitment of being sustainable.’
Orchard to bottle
The ‘Orchard to Bottle’ philosophy refers to the way Loxtonia Cider is brewed. By using the very best fresh apples, small batch techniques and 100 percent pure apple juice, Loxtonia Cider is true to the essence of each apple variety. Loxtonia focuses on perfecting ciders with no artificial ingredients and not compromising the value of the apple by changing the juice extracted from the apple in any mechanical or chemical way. In order to produce the best possible cider, the Cidery picks, sorts, presses and extracts the juice from the apples on the farm itself. The crushing and pressing are done using the top pressing system currently available in the world of cider-making, extracting the finest juice for fermentation whilst using minimal water.
During the cider ferment, Loxtonia farm uses techniques such as controlled cooling in specially designed stainless steel tanks, as well as carefully selected cross-flow filtration systems to clean the cider without hurting the flavours. This results in a truly honest and top quality cider.
A positive impact
Loxtonia’s family heritage is to be conscious of the privilege and responsibility to produce a product that is not only delicious, but does not negatively impact the planet. With as little intervention as possible, the Whitfield family aim to produce New World ciders using only the purest of ingredients. In addition, the farmstead use minimal water as all the grey water is used for irrigation while the whole production process is run entirely off solar energy.
Larry adds, ‘Our natural ciders are testament to our family’s commitment to producing products high in quality and kind to the environment. We believe everything you need to create the perfect cider can be found in the natural nutrients delivered by our soil, water and the Ceres Valley sunshine.’
Loxtonia Cider will retail at a recommended selling price of R17 to R25 per 340ml bottle and is available at leading liquor stores nationwide. This premium all-natural cider is designed to satisfy the discerning palates for a new generation of cider drinkers and is available in four refreshing variants:
- Crispy Apple Cider
- Sparkling Apple Cider
- Stone Fruit Flavoured Apple Cider
- Pale Amber Apple Cider.
‘Our quality shows not only through our philosophy, but also through the cider we produce. An excellence of taste, designed to satisfy a palate discerning of flavour and mouthfeel. Loxtonia Cider is a product for a new generation of cider drinkers, eager to set themselves apart as experts of taste,’ says Larry.