Debenham: Aspall launches new cider to commemorate centenary of composer Benjamin Britten

Aspall Festival of Britten Cyder

Aspall Festival of Britten Cyder - Credit: Archant

Cider and vinegar maker Aspall is launching a new cider commemorating the centenary of British composer Benjamin Britten.

The limited edition Festival of Britten Still Suffolk Cyder was launched on June 8 at the opening of the Aldeburgh Festival, the music and art event Britten founded in Suffolk in June 1948.

It will also be unveiled at the Royal Albert Hall and international venues celebrating Britten’s anniversary, including Carnegie Hall in New York and venues in Berlin and Munich.

Following this it will be available at selected premium bars and specialist stores in 500ml bottles.

Britten was a regular visitor at Aspall, which is based near Debenham, through the 1950s and 60s, and bought his cider directly from the family.

Festival of Britten Cyder has been matured, blended and bottled un-carbonated to re-create a style the composer would both recognise and enjoy, says Aspall.

The label features a picture of artist Maggi Hambling’s sculpture Scallop on Aldeburgh Beach which is dedicated to Britten.

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Aspall is producing a collectibles series arranged by SNAP, the visual arts component of the Aldeburgh Festival, featuring four unique Britten-inspired Maggi Hambling prints as bottle labels.

Aspall partner Barry Chevallier Guild said: “We are delighted to have crafted a new cyder inspired by the Aspall cyder Britten would have enjoyed. The still, higher strength Festival of Britten Still Suffolk Cyder represents the style of cyder produced at Aspall in the last 100 years and makes the perfect accompaniment to food with its wine-like characteristics.

“Collaborating with Aldeburgh Music to launch a Britten-inspired cyder was an exciting opportunity for us to celebrate Aspall’s rich Suffolk heritage, 65 years of the Aldeburgh Festival, distinguished local artist Maggi Hambling and the 100 year anniversary of one of our finest customers.”

Founded in 1728 by Clement Chevallier, Aspall is now owned and managed by the eighth generation of the Chevallier family.

Aldeburgh Music is celebrating the centenary of its founder Benjamin Britten throughout 2013, with the 66th Aldeburgh Festival at the heart of the year-long programme, featuring Peter Grimes on Aldeburgh beach among other highlights. The centenary culminates on what would have been Britten’s 100th birthday, November 22.