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Valentine Warner on Cider

 

Getting drinkers to plop ice into cider was an act of marketing genius, but a sure sign that you are drinking something overly sweet, made from concentrate and with no real merit. Yet, despite derision from some, these big brands have helped make cider a popular drink once again, with new makers from deepest Dorset to Herefordshire, the Kentish fruit bowl to Suffolk, pressing their apples with great ideas in mind, be it using old rum casks or applying a more wine-like approach to production.

Apple Of My Eye

As a West Country man, it’s great news that cider is enjoying a rapidly expanding market share with its interesting offerings and great new tastes. This market, though, still leans towards the sweeter tooth and what some may call ‘proper cider’ is still a long way from being enjoyed by the masses. Slowly, slowly…. it will happen

As an extremist, I for one love drinking weapons grade scrumpy from blown out two pint milk containers. It helps me to speak in tongues with badgers, go on midnight rambles and shout naked at the moon, this backcountry style tending to be for the bold, the bonkers and the toothless. There is a middle ground, however. A happy place between an understanding of the old apple varieties, ways and tastes presented in more often than not the medium sweet offerings available.

With so many tired pubs only selling dismal choices, (don’t get me started on those fruit horrors from Sweden) Aspalls has certainly done a lot to provide us with good cider, a life raft, in an orange sea of bobbing ice. Overall it’s getting better all the time. Cheers to the age of the apple!

Here are some cracking brands for you to try. Hallets, Hecks, Dunkertons (Black Fox), Gwatkins, Severn, Burrow Hill, Henneys, Olivers, Apple County, and Curious Apple.

 

 

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