So its been 8 weeks since our freshly pressed apple juice was sent off to ferment and magically turn into a thirst quenching cider! A couple of days ago, delivered to our doorstep were 262 bottles of our very own cider, the first batch of 2, with the second coming later from a different supplier. Its a pretty cool thing to be able to say you have your very own brand of alcoholic drink... gone are the days where I have to buy drinks to bring to a party.
Now some of you are probably reading this and thinking yeah yeah Ben, its all very well having your own cider, but is it actually any good? Well I have to say that the prospect of tasting it didn't fill me with excitement at first but rather a horrible stomach churning feeling for two reasons. 1) I had been out drinking heavily the night before so even the thought of alcohol repulsed me and 2) What if it was absolutely disgusting? What were we going to do then? So needless to say I waited another day before getting out the bottle opener and pouring myself a glass. Now the Cider is not quite ready to drink/sell, ideally it should be left for another month or so to allow for a secondary fermentation to occur inside the bottle. It can however, be drunk now for tasting purposes and so we cracked open a bottle. On first impressions I was taken a back by how strong it was, living up to its name, this cider isn't mucking around at the average 4% mark its knocking on the doors of 6.5%. It is not a drink for the lightweights amongst you, where as you can get away with having 3-4 of the likes of a thatchers gold and not feel anything, with 3-4 of these you'll be given something to think about.
Now i'm not a drinks connoisseur so describing the taste is not going to be the most elaborate, exciting and enticing use of words you're ever going to hear. One of the first words I used demonstrates this perfectly... "It's quite Tangy" Yes tangy was the best I could come up with. On further drinking its clear that our cider is actually very tasty, which amusingly has surprised all of us... I'm not sure quite what we were expecting, almost like we all thought it would just be terrible, especially as the apple combinations used were mostly just me saying "Yep, we'll have a little bit of that and a bit of this" I will try and now explain the taste in a little more detail, so here goes. With your first sip you are hit with a wave of a bitter lemon tonic like bite and a realisation of the strength behind the liquid. With a few more sips it becomes clear that there is more to this drink than meets the eye with a crisp, refreshing edge to it that is followed by a complex finish coming from the combination of the bitter and bitter-sweet elements of our apples coming in to play. I would recommend this drink to be had in the sun, on ice whilst watching the rugby, the perfect pairing!
I will keep you updated on when the Cider will be ready to purchase and until next time, cheers!