Bonnieheath Estate in Norfolk County is so many types of fantastic, as are the owners, Anita and Steve Buehner.
Not only does Bonnieheath produce heaps of lovely smelling lavender, oils and creams, they craft a number of delicious wines and our personal favourite, Folkin’ Hard Cider. The latter comes in two flavours: Apple and Apple & Cherry. I’m not a huge fan of anything ‘cherry flavoured’ but this unique and scrumptious cider is mixed with real cherries- nothing artificial at all.
It is delicious!
Folkin’ Hard Cider isn’t too sweet like many of the ciders in the market today, nor is it so dry that you find yourself parched after a bottle. When Anita and Steve entered their first batch of cider into the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers craft cider competition, they placed a stunning 2nd. When they entered their Apple & Cherry cider the following year, it placed 1st in the ‘specialty cider’ category, proving that this delectable hard apple cider is truly something special.
All hard cider apples come from the Bonnieheath orchard and any additional apples needed come from the Norfolk Association of Apple Growers. The cherries come from, you guessed it, the Norfolk Association of Cherry Growers and are another true representation of the fabulous fruit & veg this area produces.
When designing the label for this award winning product, Bonnieheath owner Anita said, ‘We wanted people to know that this cider is purely from Norfolk….So it is called ‘Folkin’ Hard Cider’… after the folks from Norfolk. And it you say the wrong word, have fun with it. It is definitely a product from Norfolk and we are really proud of that.’
This former tobacco farm is stunning- an impressionists canvas of purple, landscaped grape vines lined with lush green forest. You could stroll this property for hours and find a meditative calm.
Bonnieheath is also part of the ALUS program (Alternative Land Use Services) a pilot project in Nofolk which sets aside land for environmental benefit. Native prairie grasses and natural pollinators manage carbon in the air, in the soil and provide a safe haven for bees and butterflies.
Unfortunately, Folkin’ Hard Cider is for sale exclusively on the Bonnieheath Farm. When we visited, we stocked up for the foreseeable future but it is very easy to drink and I’m not sure if we have any left.
Not to fear- It just means that we will need to take another trip to the beautiful Bonnieheath farm.
P.S. This is my favourite cider of all time. There-I said it.