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More Cave Related Ephemera and Some Interesting Gossip.

In addition to the article in BB 529 another Ford Farm cheese label has turned up. It bears the title “WOOKEY HOLE Traditional Farmhouse Cheddar” above a photograph of an empty rowing boat on the River Axe in the 1st Chamber. The entrance to Charon’s Chamber is in the background (see illustration).

The Cheddar Brewery has introduced Totty Pot Porter and the writer undertook extensive field trials to confirm its excellent quality. Unfortunately the origin of the Cheddar cave name Totty Pot (incidentally delineated by the Ordnance Survey in attractive Gothic script) may put off potential imbibers. It was named by cave archaeologist and Wessex member Chris Hawkes after the mumblings of his then very young daughter Sarah – sister of Nick (sometime BEC) - who was allowed to accompany her dad at the dig site together with her potty. Richard Witcombe states in Who Was Aveline Anyway? that the cave was “Named after the makeshift bucket used on the first day’s digging by the Wessex in 1961.” There are no prizes for guessing what this “makeshift bucket” was, or what baby Sarah had to resort to! Thanks to Tangent, Chris and Richard for this gem of wisdom. Anyway, back to ephemera. Illustrated is the bottle label with a depiction of a black, yellow ochre and red ochre “cave painting” Aurochs on a blue background and a short note about the cave. Thanks to Mike Hearn for this. It’s good that they are continuing with the cave theme though and perhaps we can look forward to “Priddy Green Sink Brown Ale”! 

The rest of this article has gone on vacation somewhere and cannot be found. In the meantime we bring you some background information on Cheddar Ales. Apologies…

The labels read:

Nestling on the slopes of the Mendip Hills, within a stone's throw of the famous Cheddar Gorge, Cheddar Ales is a microbrewery producing premium quality real ales for you to enjoy at home as well as in the best pubs. Head Brewer, Jem Ham, insists on using only the finest ingredients and time-honoured methods as old as the hills themselves to produce a range of beers for traditional and modern tastes alike, that are best described as Simply Gorgeous.

Potholer is an award-winning Golden Ale. It's refreshing, with zesty fruit flavours, a rounded finish and bags of aroma. It is brewed using the best quality Maris Otter, crystal and wheat malts and hopped with a blend of the choicest whole hops.

Totty Pot is a small cave near the head of Cheddar Gorge, just one and a half miles from the brewery. Discovered in 1960 many archaeological remains (dating from 6500 b.c.) have been found, including Auroch bones and Microliths (small flint tools).

Totty Pot is an award-winning Dark Porter with a deeply satisfying roasted malt character and subtle hop highlights. It is brewed using the best quality Maris Otter, wheat and dark malts and hopped with a blend of English whole hops.

Pouring instructions: Careful, this beer contains a live yeast sediment which helps give the beer a more natural flavour. To get the best results allow the yeast to settle by storing the bottle in an upright position and then pour carefully without disturbing the sediment. Serve slightly chilled 10-12C  - Enjoy

By Tony Jarratt