Really enjoyed all four parts of the pommeliers course, from the basics on the introductory course through to the final exam, each part was either an opportunity to either learn something new or build on my existing knowledge. There is a wide variety of things on the courses from style categorisation to cider faults to learning about cider from outside the UK, it’s all there. Plus of course there’s the interaction with other delegates, that bit in not to be underestimated, I’ve really enjoyed meeting all of the other people some of whom I now consider to be friends of mine.
Preparing for the final exam takes some time as you need a portfolio of evidence, but in many ways this was the bit I enjoyed the most as it not only demonstrated what we had learnt in the previous sessions but allowed me to bring in my own experiences and appreciate how much I had been involved in cider over the years. However it is not all about looking back as it gives the writer the opportunity to take stock and assess where they want to go with cider and perry in the future. The final countdown to the assessment can be a bit nervy but with a great tutor like Gabe Cook to assess you the nerves soon settle and even the exam becomes enjoyable. In truth it was the best exam ever as it involved drinking cider!