Perry’s cider, the rather confusingly named cider company is famous for their ciders and not so much for their perrys. Since being in the UK, I’ve has the opportunity to try some of Perry limited edition ciders. But today I’m trying one of their more famous blends. Well to call it a blend is a bit of a lie. You see this cider is a single variety cider. Some say the art of cider making is in the blending of different varieties to the makers’ whim. The Somerset Dabinett is made entirely from famous Dabinett cider apples all grown in deepest darkest Somerset.

Sheppys Somerset Dabinett Cider bottle labelWith only one variety of apple, there is nowhere to hide, the cider maker has to be on song to pull a drink like this off. Perry’s ferment and age the Somerset Dabinett in stainless steel vats, not oak barrels, to insure the flavour your tasting is 100% Dabinett in all its glory. Perry’s finish the cider off with a little touch of force carbonation, just to liven up the show. The combination of the stainless steel and force carbonation, while common techniques in “Nu skool” cider making are not traditional. The fact that they are combined with the tradition of single variety cider making is what got me excited enough to track down the Perry’s Somerset Dabinett. That and the fact that Perry’s is all about small batches and wild yeast, Wild yeast is my catnip. It’s this mixing the old and new that means a cider making company formed in the 1920’s can keep the modern punters interested. But that’s enough accolades for Mr. Perry before I’ve even tasted it. Can you tell I’m excited to try it?

The Nose

Light and sweet, there is an air of soft milk chocolate.

The Taste

Sweet upfront but suddenly the astringent sucks all the moisture out of your mouth dry, begging you for another sip to replenish the moisture. What you’re tasting is 100% Dabinett apples which could make you think this is a 1 dimensional taste but I’m getting impressions of sweet fruits baked apples and even chocolate.
The Somerset Dabinett cider is very lightly sparkling and the sweetness is well-balanced. As a point of comparison I tried a Marks & Spencers Somerset Dabinett made by Sheppy’s. The 2 where very similar but the Perry’s had a little more bite, making it a better match with heavy foods.

Final Thoughts on The Somerset Dabinett Cider

So far this is the pick of the British ciders I’ve tried to date. I don’t know if that is because you can see the modern spin on cider. It’s like many of the Aussie ones I’m used to drinking but with a good history lesson in the form of Dabinett apples.

It’s not just me who likes this cider, check out the list of awards it won on the back label. Including a couple of Supreme Champions at the Bath and West show, one of the most well-respected cider competitions in the world.

Perry’s Somerset may be hard to find, if not impossible to find in Australia, but certainly keep an eye out for it if you’re in the UK.

Product Somerset Dabinett
Company Perry’s
Sweetness Medium
Alc/Vol 6%
Country of Origin England
Region Ilminster, Somerset

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