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L-R: Simon Day, Norman Stanier, Hannah Day, Pete Brown, Ann Stanier, Valentine Warner

At an awards ceremony held at the NEC in Birmingham on Wednesday 28th November, Once Upon A Tree were awarded “Best Drinks Producer” at the BBC Food & Farming Awards 2012, narrowly beating two other finalists to the top spot.  The company was one of the handful of finalists shortlisted from thousands of public nominations from listeners of the BBC4 Food Programme, You & Yours, and Farming Today.

Raymond Blanc, Valentine Warner, Paul Hollywood, Angela Hartnett and Adam Henson were among the foodie celebrities there to present awards to the 10 Winners across the 9 categories.  Beer writer Pete Brown who presented the awards to the Once Upon A Tree team said:

This company is redefining the category, making people think about drinks in a different way… For me, they tell the whole story, from the place where it’s made; where the ingredients are grown, right through to how it is sold…

After the event, cider maker Simon Day said:

It is such an honour to get this award – the enormity of it is slowly sinking in!  The judges seemed to really understand what we’re about and our passion for authentic, real cider, and the links with our community and heritage.”  He adds “The world of craft cider making is in very good shape at the moment – there has never been a better time to be a producer… For us it is all about celebrating tradition and heritage here in Herefordshire whilst being innovative in re-connecting the links between good cider and good food”

The news follows just four weeks after opening the Three Counties Cider Shop in the centre of Ledbury.   Director Norman Stanier said:

The judges seemed particularly impressed with the shop, and the way it champions cider not only from Once Upon A Tree, but from the whole region, showcasing the range of flavours and styles on offer.

The company have been overwhelmed by the public response to the news, with messages of congratulations from local residents, business leaders and many of the loyal customers and supporters of the business, who have seen the company grow over the past 5 years.

Simon Day adds:

We are very proud of what we have been able to achieve in a short space of time, and would like to thank those who have bought our cider, perry and juice; those who have taken time to visit the orchard or who have spoken with us at shows;  the Dragon Orchard Cropsharers; Tree Sponsors and for the overwhelming support we have had from our local community since we started pressing our first apples just 5 years ago.”

2015

Cider Show Down at Euston Cider Tap
2nd Place for Harry Taylors Thrown Hat

Three Counties International Cider & Perry Competition 2015
2nd  Place Best In Bottle Fermented Perry - Chapel Pleck

Chapel Pleck - Bath & West Champion Perry 2015Bath & West Show 2015
1st Place & Trophy for Champion Perry - Chapel Pleck
1st Place & Gold -
Best Sweet Cider - Blenheim Superb

Big Apple Cider and Perry Trials, Putley (www.bigapple.org.uk)
Best Sparkling Cider
- 1st place for Carpenters Croft Cider

2014

Malver Autumn Show 2014
Winner of Peoples Choice - Perry Producer

Three Counties International Cider & Perry Competition 2014
1st Place Best In Bottle Fermented Cider - Carpenters Croft
1st Place Best In Bottle Fermented Perry - Chapel Pleck

International Cider and Perry Competition 2014
1st Place -
Best Culinary Cider - Dry for Dorothy's Orchard
2nd Place 
- Best Single Variety Cider - Dabinett
3rd Place -
Best Medium Perry for Priggles Perry

 

2013

Three Counties International Cider & Perry Competition 2013
1st Place Best Innovation in Cider & Perry - The Wonder - after a tasting and an unexpected "Dragon's Den" panel interview - I was delighted to get this award for The Wonder - our dessert "Ice-Perry".  To my knowledge we are the first company in the world to make this type of product using pears, and to gain recognition for our innovation is just fantastic!
2nd Place Best In Bottle Fermented Cider - Carpenters Croft
2nd Place Best In Bottle Fermented Perry - Chapel Pleck

Chapel Pleck Perry - Best Bottle FermentedInternational Cider and Perry Competition 2013
1st Place -
Best In-Bottle Fermented Cider/Perry for Chapel Pleck
2nd Place -
Best Medium/Sweet Perry for Priggles Perry

 

 

 

 

 

Big Apple 2013 with Bill Wiggin MPBig Apple Cider and Perry Trials, Putley (www.bigapple.org.uk)
Best Medium Cider
- 2nd place for Tumpy Ground Draught Cider
Best Bottle Fermented Cider - 3rd place for Carpenters Croft Cider

 

 

 

 

Flavours of Herefordshire awards 2013

Flavours of Herefordshire Awards 2012/13

Gold - Champion Cider - Blenheim Superb
Gold - Champion Cider - Marcle Ridge
Gold - Champion Cider - Carpenters Croft

Gold - Best Food & Drink Product - Discovery Juice
Silver - Best Food & Drink Product - The Wonder

 

 

2012

winners-bbcBBC Food & Farming Awards 2012

Winners - Best Drinks Producer

(photo taken outside the NEC theatre immediately after the announcement!)

 

 

 

Three Counties International Cider & Perry Competition 2012
1st Place Best Medium Perry - Priggles Perry
3rd Place Best In Bottle Fermented Cider - Carpenters Croft
Best Producer in Herefordshire Trophy

Bath & West Show 2012
1st Place Single Variety Apple Juice - Spartan - read more here
3rd Place Blended Apple JuiceRusset & Bramley
Vigo Trophy - Best Apple Juice in Show - Spartan

 

Simon with AwardsInternational Cider and Perry Competition 2012 (see more in news section)
1st Place
- Best Dry Cider for Marcle Ridge
1st Place - Best Single Variety Cider for Dabinett 
3rd Place -
Best Medium Cider for Tumpy Ground

Big Apple Cider and Perry Trials, Putley (www.bigapple.org.uk)
Best Medium Cider - 3rd place for Tumpy Ground Draught Cider

International Cider Challenge 2012
Bronze Award in Specialist Cider - Blenheim Superb 2009
Bronze Award in Specialist Cider - Carpenters Croft Traditional Method Sparkling Cider 2009

 

2011

Receiving our Flavours Award from Jean-Christophe Novelli Drink Producer Winner Flavours of HerefordshireDrinks Producer of the Year - Flavours of Herefordshire 2011 - WINNER!!!!
Absolutely delighted to win this award this year, our 4th year of entering, and with such strong competition! Photo to follow soon.

Find out more at the Visit Herefordshire web site: www.visitherefordshire.co.uk

 

L-R Simon, Hannah, Jean-Christophe Novelli, Ann & Norman
Photo credit Richard Weaver Photography

 

Ann & Norman RHS award.Royal Horticultural Society Pomona Award - Silver-Gilt for Dragon Orchard - read more here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Three Counties Show International Cider & Perry Competition
Best Dry Cider
- 2nd Place for Michelin Oak

Bath & West Show 2011
1st Place Single Variety Apple Juice - Discovery - read more here
Vigo Trophy - Best Apple Juice in Show - Discovery

International Cider and Perry Competition 2011
1st Place
- Best Medium Cider for Kingston Redstreak 2009
1st Place - Best Single Variety Cider for Dabinett 2010 (release date TBA)

Big Apple Cider and Perry Trials, Putley (www.bigapple.org.uk)
Best Medium Cider - 2nd place for Kingston Redstreak
Best Bottle Fermented Cider - 3rd place for Carpenters Croft Traditional Method Sparkling Cider (release date June)
Best Bottle Fermented Perry -3rd place for Chapel Pleck Traditional Method Sparkling Perry (release date June)

2010

Highly Commended Cider ProducerFlavours of Herefordshire Awards DinnerCider & Perry Producer of the Year - Flavours of Herefordshire 2010 - Highly Commended
Simon & Hannah collect the award plaque from the excellent Hairy Bikers! (click on image for a bigger image)

This year we were judged against other Cider and Perry producers in Herefordshire (and there are quite a number...) and we came second, just behind class winner, Olivers Cider & Perry.  We are delighted to be recognised in the awards again this year.

Find out more at the Visit Herefordshire web site:  www.visitherefordshire.co.uk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

International Cider and Perry Competition 2010
Best Bottle Fermented Cider or Perry - 1st place Ribston Lawn Sparkling Perry

Big Apple Cider and Perry Trials, Putley
Best Bottled Perry - 3rd place for Ribston Lawn

Three Counties Show International Cider & Perry Competition
Best Bottle Fermented Cider or Perry - 3rd place for Ribston Lawn
Peoples Choice Cider - 3rd place for Putley Gold

2009

2009 Flavours of Herefordshire - Drinks Producer of the Year Award - Highly Commendedgino_and_simon2009_smallDrinks Producer of the Year - Flavours of Herefordshire 2009 - Highly Commended
Simon collects the award from Gino D'Acampo at the awards dinner.

We are absolutely delighted to get this award at the Flavours of Herefordshire Awards.  There are so many fantastic drinks producers in Herefordshire, and a large number of good cider producers, that we feel honoured to have our, still fledgling, business recognised by the judging panel.  Thank you!

 

Find out more at the Visit Herefordshire web site:  www.visitherefordshire.co.uk

 

 

Simon with Champion's Cup

OVERALL CHAMPION'S CUP, CIDER and PERRY for our Kingston Black 2008 Cider at the International Cider and Perry Competition 2009
Best Single Variety Cider - 1st place Kingston Black
Best Presented Cider or Perry - 2nd place Marcle Ridge

International Open Cider and Perry Competition at The Three Counties Show
Best Medium Cider - 2nd place for Putley Gold

Big Apple Cider and Perry Trials, Putley
Best Medium Cider - 2nd place for Kingston Black

 

2008 (our first year)

Simon with AwardsThree First Places at the International Cider and Perry Competition 2008
Best Dry Cider - 1st place Marcle Ridge
Best Medium Cider - 1st place Putley Gold
Best Presented Cider or Perry - 1st place Dabinett

(Thanks to the Hereford Journal for use of the photo)

 

 

 

 

The Hairy BikersFinalists for Small Drinks Producer of the Year 2008 (Flavours of Herefordshire)seen here with the Hairy Bikers, collecting our award plaque!

Visit www.visitherefordshire.co.uk/ for more details on the Flavours of Herefordshire, and the abundance of food and drink to be found in our county.

Hannah Day with AwardsOnce Upon A Tree were awarded "BEST PRODUCER IN HEREFORDSHIRE" at the Three Counties International Cider & Perry Competition, held by the Three Counties Cider and Perry Association during the Three Counties Show each year.

The company gained first place for the Best Medium Perry awarded to their "Priggles" perry. The company also gained a 3rd place in the Best Bottle Fermented Cider for their "Carpenters Croft" traditional method cider.

Cider Maker Simon Day said "Our perries have been improving with time, and to gain a first place for our Priggles Perry in this major competition is just fantastic. We're delighted with 3rd for our in-bottle fermented sparkling cider, which can be a difficult category. To then go on to be named "Best Herefordshire Producer" is just an absolute honour!"

These awards follow the firm's recent successes at the International Cider Competition at the Cider Museum in Hereford and the Royal Bath & West Show.

We are having a sensational year for awards, I'm thrilled that we are getting recognised for our efforts in making the very best ciders and perries in our little part of Herefordshire!" added Hannah Day.

The winning products are available to taste at the Orchard Shop at Once Upon A Tree in Putley where visitors can enjoy self guided walks through the orchards, and a range of locally produced foods, arts and crafts. 

Snow-blossom by Richard Crompton

Snow Blossom by Richard Crompton

Herefordshire_Year_in_the_Orchard_logo_webA Herefordshire Year in the Orchard Event hosted by Once Upon A Tree.

Befuddled by filters, dim about flash, wobbly about tripods or simply want to understand how to take better snaps?

Come and experience a day’s photography training with RPS Gold Medal photographer, Richard Crompton. Richard’s award winning images have included fashion, portraits, landscapes, flowers, still-life, reportage and abstract. Richard will be joined on the day by award winning Wildlife photography expert, Linda Wright. So if you want to photograph it, they will know how!

Misty-Gate-May by Richard Crompton

Misty Gate in May by Richard Crompton

The day is aimed at developing skills and confidence with your camera. Expand your knowledge by photographing a range of subjects and understand the thought process behind shooting great images.

You’ll get the most from the day if your camera has some form of manual control such as that found on all SLR cameras and high spec compact cameras. Being able to tell the camera what YOU want it to do will greatly increase the ‘hit rate’ when creating your ‘masterpieces’.

Tawny Owl by Linda Wright
Tawny Owl by Linda Wright
Pink-Blossom by Richard Crompton
Pink Blossom by Richard Crompton

They will cover how your camera sees the world and how that affects your images. The effect your choice of aperture, shutter speed and lens length has on your photograph. How to compose an image, with some simple rules to get you started. Lots of fun practical sessions to help you to grasp the concepts and tips and tricks professionals use to create a stunning image, no matter what.

The day is set-up for you to learn how to get the most from whatever photography gear you have. You don’t need bags packed with gear, what matters is your enthusiasm to make a great picture with the equipment you have.

We will be in the orchard for most of the day so please dress for the outdoors and the weather. The afternoon session will conclude with a chance to put all your newly acquired skills to use, photographing something really special!

The course is 10.00am until 4.00pm, with a break for a ‘Dragon Orchard’ lunch.
Cost for the day is £80. Spaces are limited, and must be booked.

Please click to download the Course information sheet, with booking form, or

For questions about the course please contact Richard on 01531 670340
For bookings, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 01531 670263.

Grey Buzzard by Linda Wright
Grey Buzzard by Linda Wright

Photography in the Orchard – Saturday 16th April

Befuddled by filters, dim about flash, wobbly about tripods or simply want to understand how to take better snaps?

Come and experience a day’s photography training with RPS Gold Medal photographer, Richard Crompton. Richard’s award winning images have included fashion, portraits, landscapes, flowers, still-life, reportage and abstract. Richard will be joined on the day by award winning Wildlife photography expert, Linda Wright. So if you want to photograph it, they will know how!

The day is aimed at developing skills and confidence with your camera. Expand your knowledge by photographing a range of subjects and understand the thought process behind shooting great images.

You’ll get the most from the day if your camera has some form of manual control such as that found on all SLR cameras and high spec compact cameras. Being able to tell the camera what YOU want it to do will greatly increase the ‘hit rate’ when creating your ‘masterpieces’.

They will cover how your camera sees the world and how that affects your images. The effect your choice of aperture, shutter speed and lens length has on your photograph. How to compose an image, with some simple rules to get you started. Lots of fun practical sessions to help you to grasp the concepts and tips and tricks professionals use to create a stunning image, no matter what.

The day is set-up for you to learn how to get the most from whatever photography gear you have. You don’t need bags packed with gear, what matters is your enthusiasm to make a great picture with the equipment you have.


We will be in the orchard for most of the day so please dress for the outdoors and the weather. The afternoon session will conclude with a chance to put all your newly acquired skills to use, photographing something really special!

The course is 10.00am until 4.00pm, with a break for a ‘Dragon Orchard’ lunch.

For questions about the course please contact Richard on 01531 670340

For bookings, contact Hannah Day at Once Upon a Tree on 01531 670263, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

We're proud to announce the release of two new products, to be launched at the Hereford Food Festival on the 25th - 26th October. Read our Press Release Here (PDF)

Ribston Lawn Perry – Traditional Method Sparkling Perry, made with Blakeney Red perry pears grown in an old traditional perry orchard at Ribston Lawn in nearby Much Marcle. This perry has elegance and finesse, with subtle fruit notes and a creamy brioche mouthfeel. Brut style sparkling to accompany a celebration, or partner with light meat dishes or good soft cheeses.

Blenheim Orange – A unique product for the UK, taking the principles of ice-wine production and applying them to apples! Blenheim Orange apples were chosen for their delicate flavour and balance. The juice was frozen and allowed to thaw yielding a terrifically sweet concentrated juice, that was fermented to 7.5% abv leaving very high residual sugar levels. Perfect partnered with dessert, or with good strong hard cheeses.

We're delighted to be named as finalists at this years Flavours of Herefordshire awards again this year. Come and see us at the show and taste our new products on the 25th and 26th October!

 

13th May 2009 - We've just been awarded the OVERALL CHAMPION'S CUP, CIDER and PERRY for our Kingston Black 2008 Cider at the International Cider and Perry Competition 2009 - Once Upon A Tree has just celebrated its first anniversary. Winning this award has to be the best birthday present possible. After a successful first year of trading, we are planning to grow the company significantly, and this has provided a further boost to our confidence.”

We were also recognised in the awards for presentation for the second year running. The cider is sold in clear wine bottles with wine style labels to reinforce the message that these ciders are ideal to enjoy with food.

It was my intention at the outset of the company to make cider and perry that would accompany and enhance good food & to make ciders to savour!

The Kingston Black has been released for sale. Limited quantities available!

Last year we were awarded Three First Places at the International Cider and Perry Competition 2008
(Producer of the Best Dry Cider, Best Medium Cider and Best Presented Cider or Perry)

Here's a photo of cider maker Simon Day with the awards!
(Thanks to the Hereford Journal for use of the photo)

And we were Finalists for Small Drinks Producer of the Year 2008 (Flavours of Hereforshire) seen here with the Hairy Bikers, collecting our award plaque!

Visit www.visitherefordshire.co.uk/ for more details on the Flavours of Herefordshire, and the abundance of food and drink to be found in our county.

 

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