England > East Sussex > Lewes - Firle
Scopey (337) Croydon, England | August 13, 2012
94 AMBIANCE 5/5 SERVICE 9/10 SELECTION 15/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 8/10 OVERALL 18/20
We stopped past Middle Farm on the way back from a trip to see the Seven Sisters (also worth a visit) and were completely blown away by the place. The “cider centre” is a modest-sized hut in the farm complex which encompasses farm shops, cafe, restaurant, gift shop and farm zoo. The place has a plethora of all alcoholic beverages British. It is stuffed to the rafters with barrels of cider, perry, mead and liqueurs. You just grab yourself a sample cup and taste away! Over 100 ciders/perrys in barrel are available for takeout in plastics containers, ceramics bottles or by the barrel themselves. In bottles they have beer (100+), cider, perry, mead, spirits, English wine, liqueurs and juices. All fairly local, all British. You can drink your cider outside at the restaurant tables. Only (slight) negatives are the bees and relatively cramped space, but it all kind of adds to the ambiance anyway. I doubt there is a better selection of cider anywhere else.
Boudicca (524) London, England | January 8, 2012
88 AMBIANCE 3/5 SERVICE 9/10 SELECTION 15/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 9/10 OVERALL 17/20
The national cider and perry collection – an unsurpassed cornucopia!
Middle Farm is a complex of buildings incorporating an excellent farm shop, a gift shop, a children’s farmyard zoo, a restaurant and – best of all – the national cider and perry collection. The latter is housed in a small barn packed with goodies. There are 116 barrels of cider, all of which can be sampled (just help yourself!) as well as hundreds of bottles beer, cider and perry from local sources and further afield. It’s a veritable treasure trove. We visited on a cold day in early November to celebrate Caspar’s forthcoming move to the United States and spent a happy few hours in the courtyard. Those of us who weren’t driving (really the only way to get there) were fortified by the abundant samples and hot mulled cider from the barn.
(Visited 6 November 2011).
mabel (211) Toronto, Ontario | July 25, 2011
88 AMBIANCE 3/5 SERVICE 10/10 SELECTION 15/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 10/10 OVERALL 16/20
2010-07. Visited late on a sunny Saturday afternoon last July about an hour before they closed, we swooped into the parking lot after a long day in Hastings and were extremely surprised to find a hundred barrels of cider and perry in the tasting room. Our travelling companions tried a few before heading out for a spot of tea, but we stayed and thoroughly enjoyed the bee-filled barrel room and several more samples. We bought a few jugs to try later (tasty), with some suggestions from the friendly staff on hand. Quite steady business, not packed. Would return in a heartbeat, despite being a bit out of the way. (3/10/15/NA/10/16) 88%
jercraigs (255) Toronto, Ontario | August 14, 2010
84 AMBIANCE 3/5 SERVICE 7/10 SELECTION 15/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 10/10 OVERALL 17/20
2010-07-31. I had read about this place, particularly Rastacouere’s glowing review of it, so I had some idea of what to expect, but I was still unprepared for what we found. We arrived later in the day so we eschewed the farm part (which in hindsight didn’t seem that interesting anyway) in favour of heading directly to the cider facilities. My jaw dropped as we walked in to a room that was wall to wall filled with plastic casks full of cider and perry. I wasn’t sure where to start so I got a sampling glass and asked for some suggestions. Its a bit cramped so try to avoid bringing any bags in with you if you can, I eventually stashed my backpack in a corner. Went around ticking and tasting at random, and had sampled enough in 30 minutes to an hour that I was actually feeling the alcohol a bit by the time I left. We were in a hurry but I would recommend planning to spend a long time here, take advantage of the food next door and the reportedly excellent selection of cheese (it was closed by the time we giddily rejoined our group). A pain to get to, we were lucky to have a driver. Selection of ciders is (I have to assume) unparalleled. They also have a decent selection of beer on hand but if you are considering them you may be missing the point! (Although they might serve as a nice palate reset). They have containers on hand or they will fill just about anything you bring them apparently. If you are even modestly interested in cider this is well worth a visit. An experience.
Rastacouere (651) Montreal, Quebec | September 11, 2007
100 AMBIANCE 5/5 SERVICE 10/10 SELECTION 15/15 FOOD N/A VALUE N/A OVERALL 20/20
This wonderful place is located about 2 miles East of the actual. The closest train station is Glynde, an unpleasant 45 minutes walk away by the A27 that does not have a walkway for all the length or you may catch a bus from Lewes every 1h30, in the week. Count 2 hours once you get the Southern from London-Victoria. Once there, it has this charming feel of honest stresslessness that can only be found in campaigns. I’m a city guy myself, but it seems that many of my favourite spots, moments etc. originate from rural areas. ambiance: 5. The staff is truly charming, extremely knowledgeable. I stayed there about 3 hours and ended up very friendly with them, chatting about Quebec ice ciders and Calvados. When I’d fill a plastic pint of a cider 10 meters away from them, basically from a random barrel amongst possibly 90 that covered that single wall, they knew immediately which one I picked without possibly being able to read the label, up to the ABV. They’ll let you sample without making you feel out of place or overly ambitious. 10. They love cider-lovers. The selection, to put it mildly, is almost undoutedly the best cider/perry collection in the world. 15. And overall, well with all I’ve written, I’d better give it a 20 and be done with it. This is the Mecca, the Kulminator of all ciderheads and by default, one of my favourite places in the world.
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