We spent most of today pressing, processing, and fermenting apple cider. The entire family was involved!: Gramps fed the apples into the hopper, I turned the hand crank on the grinder, Ryan pressed, and Grandma collected apples off of the tree.
We used about 95% Lodi apples, and 5% Cox's Orange Pippin. The fresh cider was absolutely delicious, and I can't wait for the other apple trees to ripen so that we can press some more cider (especially the Winesap and Arkansas Black)! We did not harvest all of the apples off of our standard-size Lodi tree, but we did press about 7 gallons of cider.
We have begun the fermentation process for hard cider on about 6 gallons, and we drank and pressure canned the remaining gallon.
I never knew that fresh, unpasteurized cider - straight out of the press's bucket - could taste SO amazing! And whenever you got thirsty from the hard work of pressing, you dipped a cup into the cider bucket and had yourself a drink!