Founded by Daniel Emerson and his wife Geraldine in 2010, Stonewell sources apples solely from premier Irish orchards, including Cornelius Traas in Tipperary as well as orchards in Kilkenny and Waterford, to produce an outstanding cider made using traditional handmade methods and all-natural ingredients.
With the exception of the glass bottles, everything about a Stonewell cider is Irish – the apples, labels, cartons and, of course, the elbow grease!
Stonewell is a small operation with four full-time staff producing two ciders: a medium dry and a dry version. Inspired by the contemplative Atlantic view at the farm, the team at Stonewell likes to think the forces of nature influence their approach to how they make their cider and to ensuring it retains the integrity of its primary natural ingredient: the humble apple.
Despite their short time in production, the Emersons have already achieved recognition from many quarters - most notably, an extraordinary success in the 2013 Great Taste Awards, where both of their ciders achieved 3-star awards. The highest possible accolade in these excellent awards (run by the UK's Guild of Fine Foods since 1994), the 3-star award (described as 'Exquisite Wow! Taste that') was only given to 125 products out of 9,738 entered for 2013, so achieving that for both ciders is a really remarkable achievement.
Check the website for a list of stockists. Stonewell also now exports their cider to Italy, where there’s a burgeoning interest in artisan ciders.