Heck's Cider are one of our favourite Somerset Cider producers! Why? Not only are they are proper old school in their cider making, but it's also a proper family run business going back about 6 generations. That's a lot of Hecks!
History of Hecks Cider
The Hecks family have been making traditional farmhouse cider in Somerset for six generations, since 1841. In 1896, they started to sell cider from their farm shop in Street.
Their delicious ciders are made by blending juices from different apple varieties (all locally grown in the farm's orchards) till they taste just right. They also make a range of Single Variety ciders, with no blending or mixing. Just pure unadulterated flavour from one apple juice, like their Kingston Black. The cider is fermented in wooden barrels and some is sold draught from the wood, the rest is bottled..
As you'll see their quality control process is quite thorough! resulting in a range of mouthwatering ciders, from dry farmhouse styles to sweet keeved ciders.
Read our interview with Andrew Heck and his Son, Will.
How did you (or the very first Heck) get interested/started in cider making?
Andrew: "We're the 6th and 7th generation of Hecks in Street making Cider. In a way, it's all we've ever known!"
Will: "I took a gap year out from college and came to help out. I didn't go back!"
Andrew: "My great great great Grandad moved to Street from Chard in 1896 to run the Street Inn in Street and made Cider to supply the Inn. Almost everyone, especially farmers and the like, made cider then. And as a family, we just carried on."
What's best... and the worst part of cider making? The worst?
Will (with Andrew laughing): "Best is the quality control!''
Andrew ''The worst is January as nothing going on and no customers. Spring and Autumn are the best times- spring you have all the blossom, and in Autumn harvesting starts."
What's your favourite Cider apple variety?
Andrew: "Porters Perfection- makes great dry cider. I planted lots back in 2000 and they're just starting to come into their own. It's a great looking apple, that has a tendency to fuse into double and triple. And its quite a late apple too- we've even picked as late as Feb.''
What's your personal favourite Heck's product?
Andrew: "The Porters Perfection. But also Boxwood Foxwhelp. It makes another dry juice but quite a different juice to Porter's Perfection. Really dry and almost acidic- you either love it or hate it
Will: "The vintage Dry, which is a blend, out of the barrel. I prefer still ciders to sparkling ones."
What makes Heck's Cider proper unique?
Andrew: "Consistently really good juice.
Will (with another chuckle): "Which is down to lots of quality control."
Delicious Somerset cider from true lovers of the craft
Well, there you have it - You know it's good cider because of the quantity of quality control that Hecks have been partaking in for the last 6 generations! You've read all about them, now it's time to try a few of their craft ciders.
Selection of Hecks Ciders
Slack Ma Girdle
Be tempted by the name, but be swayed by its delicious fruity flavour and almost walnut-ty aftertaste.
Try Andrew Heck's personal favourite of the Hecks Ciders!
Farmhouse Vintage Dry
Or treat yourself to Will Hecks' choice of the best Hecks Ciders! This is the bottled version with a bit of sparkle.
Keeved Dunkertons Late Sweet
Drink the last of the seasons Hecks Cider apples in this delicious keeved Cider, which keeps some of the natural sugars and sweetness.
Shop the full range here