SHOWERINGS Cider has been made in Somerset since 1658.

Its roots go as deep as any apple tree in any orchard in the country.

As a company, it has a rich heritage which spans 14 generations of the same family and has seen countless generations of the same families working in its Somerset cider mills.

Showerings Cider has been produced in Shepton Mallet for 100 years.

For nearly 40 of those years, Bob Cork has been part of the company, working in a business which he loves with a passion and would never ever think of doing anything else.

Master cider maker Bob said things had changed since he started out.

“I actually started working for Showerings in 1980 and came into the business as an engineer,” he said.

“It was at a time when they were upgrading the pipework and fitting stainless steel pipes.

“Since I joined I have done lots of jobs and worked in every aspect of the cider making trade.

“I have done virtually all the jobs you could think of, like exports, and have travelled all over the world and have tasted lot of different ciders.

“I have been drinking cider for 50 years and making it for 40 years and as a product I learn more and more about it and am very passionate about it.

“Now as a master cider maker I have the responsibility for the development and production of the cider portfolio, managing the processes and controlling the raw materials which we use.

“We only use the finest local cider apples grown exclusively for Showerings in award winning orchards less than eight miles from the mill.

“We select the apples when they are at the peak of ripeness and are fresh harvested and delivered directly into the mill and pressed immediately to ensure the finest quality juice is fermented to make our award winning ciders.

“As with all food and drink the best ingredients make the best products.

“Our Methods are very traditional and we have been making our ciders the same way for generations, our modern cider mill gives us good control over all that we do ensuring our ciders are the highest quality and consistency.

“It is important we have empathy with the consumer and can cater for everyone’s tastes.

“We aim for consistency in taste and quality and try to make sure everything is perfect from apple to the glass.”

A few snap facts about Showering is:

- The Showering Cider Mill is run by four brothers – Francis, Jonathan, Matthew and Daniel.

- The family has been producing cider for 14 generations

- The company’s brands include ‘Brothers’ and ‘Mallets’

- The company first started selling its Pear Cider at Glastonbury Festival in 1995

- The Showering Cider Mill is the second largest cider plant in the UK and is capable of producing 25% of total UK cider

Bob explained when it comes to making cider the peak period is between late September and up until Christmas. He said at this time the cider mill is operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week as there is only such a short period to get everything done.

And taking a new step forward, The Great British Cider company from Somerset, Showerings Cider Mill, has launched Mallets, a new exciting cider brand that defies the traditional. This is the first new cider to be produced at The Showerings Cider Mill since its future was secured by the Showering brothers, whose family originally owned it.

A ‘Cider for Gods’, Mallets is endorsed by Shepton Mallet, named after the town - the ancient God of Cider and labelled as the next true heir to the cider thrown. Legend has it that when our ancestors needed to quench their thirst, they would beseech Shepton to bestow upon them a perfectly balanced, easy-drinking pint.

Mallets is available in two flavours, both variants endlessly refreshing; Mallets Original cider is a medium dry apple, created with the juice of freshly pressed bittersweet cider fruit from Somerset orchards and Mallets Dark Fruit, a refreshing blend of Somerset apple cider with natural blackcurrant and blackberry flavours.

Emmy Webster, Senior Marketing Manager said: “We set out to create a cider to appeal to a wide audience of consumers, yet made with generations of expertise, dedication and commitment to the art of cider making.

“Mallets is easy to drink, easy to love and it’s easy to see why we’re so excited to share it with the market. Medium dry, with a great big appley punch.

Matthew Showering, managing director of The Showering Cider Mill, said: “We are delighted to be launching the most exciting emerging brand in the cider market from our family mill in Somerset, following our return last year.

“We care deeply about our cider and its heritage and wanted to dedicate our latest innovation to our local town to instil Shepton (both the character and the town) into the hearts and minds of cider drinkers.”

Speaking to Bob you can hear this passion for cider.

But as he says, he is biased in his opinion but for him, ‘Somerset cider is the one for me’.

Like so many in Somerset, Bob lives and breaths cider.