Dickens Cider, such a pun worthy name for a cider company. Today I’m reviewing the Dickens Old English Cider.
Like most of the other guys from the Tassie, the cider is made from real apples. And why wouldn’t you. The state has, what are probably Australia best apple growing conditions.
The Dickens family had a few drinks back in 2008 in their home which just happened to be a converted apple cold store. They decided to make cider. Today they now own a cider house and produce a range of ciders. Today I’m trying their Old English.
The guys down at Willie Smith’s have a new cider. Willie Smith’s Bone Dry Cider, is, as the name suggests, it’s a dry cider. While their first cider I reviewed was based on the French farmhouse style, the Bone dry is based on a traditional Herefordshire style. The big difference between the Herefordshire and this Tassie cloudy is the apples used. Here we have eating apple and not the traditional cider varieties. Sam Reid, the head cider maker at Willie Smith’s told me, the Bone Dry is a favourite among the local farmers when served at The Apple Shed. It’s earned itself the nickname “The Knee Bender” as its easy drink and quite strong.
I was in the mood for an English cider. At my local bottle shop in the back corner I saw Hogan’s Dry Cider. Proudly sitting on top of the bottle was a sticker proclaiming 1st Place at the Royal Bath and West Show. I thought to myself the competition at the Bath and West must be pretty stiff, this is in the middle of the West Country cider making region. That has got to be a good recommendation.
Continuing the theme of Aussie ciders I’ve reviewed named after water fowl, Lucky Duck and Sitting Duck being the other two, Gilbert’s The Goose is made by the Gilbert Family of wine makers. This is one of only a handful of Aussie ciders made with traditional British cider apples. The Foxwhelps and Kingston are blended with the eating apple developed here in Australia: Pink Ladies and Granny Smiths.
Like Napoleon Cider, The Goose is made by wine makers. I think it would be an easier transfer of skills between grapes and apples compared to the transition from brewing beer to fermenting apples. Wine and Cider making require you to focus on the fruit’s juice and how yeast act on it. A delicate balance of flavours is needed to make a great drink. A good wine maker has the potential to be a good ciderist. So can the boutique winery make a quality boutique cider?
Since starting this blog I’ve been amazed at how many different Aussie ciders are out there. Do a search on Twitter for cider makers and you will be amazed at how many you will find. Quite a few of the Australian cider are at the on the sweeter end of the spectrum. Sitting Duck Apple Cider stands out from the crowd being the driest Aussie cider I’ve tasted. Free from concentrate and only using local Adelaide Hills apples, It’s easy to see why its won awards at the Perth and Sydney Royal Shows.
Over a couple emails Nick Penprase, Sales Manager at Rocland Estate (Sitting Duck’s parent company) told me about Sitting Duck Cider.
Back in 2010 two mates set themselves with a simple goal – to make Australia’s best cider! By keeping it local and keeping it simple, the Hills Cider Company has come up with a cider that is hard to beat and gives you every bang for your buck.
I’m here to chop wood and drink cider, and I’m all out of wood. The Golden Axe Cider is here, but I think this lumberjack has been cutting hay.
Golden Axe Cider caught my eye with some great graphic artistry on the label. Featuring a computer generated caricature of a lumberjack, the Golden Axe really stands out on the shelf. That’s only superficial. The geeks behind the cider sound like my type of people.
It’s a bloody hot Friday afternoon. It’s been a long week. This is the Reveller, the side of the bottle says its refreshing and I hope its right. Coming in at 4.5% the Reveller is one of Orchard Pigs lighter offerings. Designed as their “pub product” available in bottles and on tap. Although, it’s only on tap if you lucky enough to be in a quality British pub. My tasting was from the bottle. I paid $8.50 for a 500ml bottle from a specialist bottle shop in the Sydney CBD. It might seem a little dear but is probably a low volume import and its a biggish bottle.