Longstem and Captain John Broad apples from Cornwall are used to make the cider

Cornish Orchards has launched a small-batch sparkling cider in 750ml sharing bottles.

Called Avalen, the new tipple has rolled into selected Waitrose stores (rsp: £13.50).

Made using Cornish Longstem and Captain John Broad apples from Duloe, Cornwall and limited to just 5,000 bottles, Avalen would offer “the perfect accompaniment to sunnier days and summer social occasions”, Cornish Orchards said.

The 8.3% abv sparkling cider was developed in collaboration with the winemaker at Cornwall’s Camel Valley and was fermented and processed in the same way as champagne, according to the Asahi-owned cidermaker.

The cider was matured “for over a year to develop flavour and aroma”, and paired well with simple seafood like crab and grilled white fish, it added.

Its launch came with demand for posh cider on the rise, Cornish Orchards said, citing CGA on-trade data showing “premium” cider growth was outpacing the wider category [52 we 4 November 2023].

Jourdan Gabbini, cider buyer for Waitrose, said sales of the drink were up by 10% in the retailer’s stores over the past year.

“Attitudes to cider are changing and interest is growing,” he said. “It is appearing on more restaurant menus and being talked about more on social media channels.

“I am thrilled that we are going to be selling this delicious, small batch cider. It has been carefully made with passion and attention to detail at every step and offers our customers something truly unique.”

Chris Newton, head cidermaker at Cornish Orchards, added: “Avalen is a truly Cornish cider, highlighting the best of the region’s ingredients and artisanal brewing processes. We are proud of its heritage in the UK and this launch is testament to the passion of our cidermakers.”