Despite the less than favourable weather, Residents of Nakusp and surrounding areas made it to Burton on May 21 to help Barbara and Alan Ross celebrate the grand opening of the Burton City Cidery.
Originally, the cidery was going to be called Pomona Mills Cidery, but because of copyright issues with the word Pomona, a change had to be made, and the name Burton City Cidery was chosen in its place.
“Burton was Burton City a long time ago, so we named it following the history of the location,” said Alan Ross.
There was a bit of a country fair atmosphere to the opening, as there were several local businesses at the event, along with live music.
“We liked the idea of making it a more market feel, and we’re encouraging the whole idea of buying local,” said Barbara Ross. “We knew there would be a whole lot of campers by, and holiday people, so we thought this was a good opportunity for them and for us, make it fun for everybody.”
So many people attended the opening and finding a place to park proved to be a little difficult. As soon as one person pulled out of their spot, another driver was there to take their place.
Visitors were able to sample the variety of ciders offered. Currently, there are four selections, Basic Apple, Ginger Apple, Cider Maker’s Special, and Apple-N-Rye.
Along with the cidery, there is also a deli featuring a selection of meat and cheese, a selection of bean and quinoa salads, and pies.
Visitors were able to buy cider as well. About 50 bottles were pre-poured in preparation of the grand opening, and at least another 50 were sold. The Ross’ were so busy behind the counter they barely had a moment to step away.
News of the opening got around — from word of mouth, to Facebook, and at the local grocery store.
“I heard about it when I was in Overwaitea, and I could tell there was a buzz in the air,” said Ashley Pendree. “The people were all talking about, so I thought why not come down.”
Pendree was impressed with the cidery, and thinks it’s a great thing for Burton.
“I think it would be good for people when bringing friends and family to the area on a Saturday,” she said. “If someone’s not into outdoor activities, it’s a good place to bring people — maybe mom and pop, or grams and gramps. It’s something a little more social.”
Jeff Weber agrees.
“It’s a beautiful area, there are lots of outdoor activities to do, but there’s no services really, no stores, no restaurants; the coffee shop closed about four years ago, so this is awesome.”
The Ross’ are going to use the summer to help fine tune things with the business, such as what the hours are going to be, how extensive they want to make the deli, and determine which cider products are the most popular.
From May and June, the cidery will be open Saturday and Sunday from 11-4 p.m., and then July and August it will be open Friday to Monday from 11-4 p.m.
The Ross’ feel the timing of the opening was just right.
“I think the community was ready for a new business to start up and be open to welcome the new visitors,” said Alan. “We’ve lost a few businesses over the last ten years, and it’s time to reverse the flow.”