Watch out world. The Aussies are making kick ass ciders. At this year’s 2016 Australian Cider awards the quiet revolution was on show. You see these Aussie cider makers have been honing their skills with the limited palette of eating apples, but now, now the cider apple trees planted 4 years ago are starting to literally bare fruit. Like a photographer growing up with black and white film, suddenly there is colour. And It’s Awesome.

The Awards were presided over by the wine and cider writer Max Allen with the British cider writer Bill Bradshaw. The room is full of well-known Australian Craft Cider makers, a few newcomers and a few sponsors that provide the infrastructure to keep this industry running. The full results after break

Willie Smith’s Organic Cider in Tasmania has scored the top prize for the second year running at this year’s Australian Cider Awards with a limited release cider.

The Best in Show prize was awarded to Willie Smith’s French Blend Limited Release Cider in front of 100 people on Friday night at the cider industry’s gala dinner.

Willie Smith’s co-owner Sam Reid said winning the award validates the huge investment that the team has put into developing its ciders, its fourth-generation apple orchards and The Apple Shed cellar door in Grove, Tasmania.

“Our French Blend Limited Release Cider, to be formally launched tomorrow at The Australian Cider Festival in Melbourne, reflects the maturing market for cider in Australia with people ready to explore more complex varieties of craft cider and ciders made with cider apples”, said Mr Reid.

Judges awarded the product a gold medal for its interesting, complex and layered flavour with good tannins and a full body – exactly what they were looking for in a medium sweet, traditional cider.

Four other gold medals were awarded to LOBO Cider and Jachmann Apple Co from South Australia, Small Acres Cyder from New South Wales and Daylesford Cider from Victoria.

Chief Steward Nyall Condon said it was amazing to see over 200 entries in the competition, and the judging panel was equally impressed with the high calibre of ciders on show.

“Appreciation of cider in Australia is shifting in the direction we were hoping with more complex, drier styles being produced,” Mr Condon said.

“Our show is going from strength to strength and Cider Australia is proud to be leading the way in cider judging, encouraging quality and product innovation and educating producers and consumers about this fine beverage.”

2016 Australian Cider Awards

BEST AUSTRALIAN CIDER OR PERRY

Willie Smith’s – Willie Smith’s French Blend Limited Release Cider

BEST INTERNATIONAL CIDER OR PERRY

Square Keg – Aspall Draught

BEST CIDER

Willie Smith’s – Willie Smith’s French Blend Limited Release Cider

BEST PERRY

Small Acres Cyder -Small Acres Cyder 2013 Sparkling Perry

BEST IN SHOW

Willie Smith’s – Willie Smith’s French Blend Limited Release Cider

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Class Winners

New World Dry Cider (max. 1.004 SG) CLASS 1A Sponsored by Alepat Taylor – Pagan Cider Wood-Aged Apple

Traditional Dry Cider (max. 1.004 SG) CLASS 1B Sponsored by Laffort – LOBO Cider LOBO Norman

New World Medium Cider (1.004-1.019 SG) CLASS 2A Sponsored by Johnston Packaging – Jachmann Apple Co Jachmann Pink Lady Apple Cider 330 Ml

Traditional Medium Cider (1.004-1.019 SG) CLASS 2B Sponsored by Della Toffola Pacific – Willie Smith’s Willie Smiths French Blend Limited Release Cider

New World Sweet Cider (min. SG 1.019) Class 3A Sponsored by Summer Snow – Hillbilly Cider Hillbilly Sweet Julie AND Mock Orchards Mock Red Hill Sweet Cider AND Sydney Brewery Sydney Cider.

Method Traditional Cider CLASS 4A/B (disgorged) Sponsored by Appledale Processors – Brady’s Lookout Cider Bradys Lookout Cider Premium Cuvee AND Small Acres Cyder Small Acres Cyder 2015 Sparkling AND Flying Brick Cider Co Flying Brick MC Cider.

New World Dry Perry (max. SG 1.004) CLASS 5A Sponsored by Kegstar – Flying Brick Cider Co Flying Brick Pear Cider AND LOBO Cider LOBO Dry Pear

New World Medium Perry (1.004-1.019 SG) CLASS 6A Sponsored by Vintessential – Hillbilly Cider Hillbilly Pear Cider AND The Hills Cider Company The Hills Cider Company Pear

Traditional Medium Perry (1.004-1.019 SG) CLASS 6B Sponsored by Winequip – McCashins Brewery Saxton Pear Cider

New World Sweet Perry (min. SG 1.019) CLASS 7A Sponsored by William Angliss Institute – Spreyton Cider Co Spreyton Pear Cider

Method Traditional Perry CLASS 8A/B (disgorged) (0.995-1.020 SG) Sponsored by William Angliss Institute – Small Acres Cyder Small Acres Cyder 2013 Sparkling Perry

Speciality/Experimental Cider or Perry CLASS 9 Sponsored by William Angliss Institute – The Hills Cider Company The Hills Cider Company Hop Edition

 

The full results of the 2016 Australian Cider awards can be downloaded here

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