Gwatkin Stoke Red (SV) Cider Review

Vital Stats:

Producer: Gwatkin
Cider Name: Stoke Red (SV) Cider
Region: Herefordshire
ABV: 7.5%
Taste: Sweet
Served: Chilled 750ml bottle
Smell: Sweet apples
Colour: Amber
Clarity: Slightly cloudy
Carbonation: Still

Review/Tasting Notes:

Purchased From: Festival in Bristol
Date: 27/11/12

Tonight sees me back to exploring Herefordshire again, with today’s cider of choice the Stoke Red Single-Variety cider from Gwatkin.

Gwatkin label this as a sweet cider, which is slightly concerning as Gwatkin ciders are usually sweeter than they say they are anyway. The Stoke Red apple is usually used to sweeten a cider, so it will be interesting to see how it holds up on its own. As expected, this is a full juice cider and has been matured in oak barrels with natural yeasts.

I’ve cracked this open and it was beautifully still, just the way I like it! This poured a lovely shade of amber and smelt sweet. Not sickly sweet, but not far off that.

Onto the taste and it’s not as sweet as I first imagined it would be. You can’t deny it is sweet, but there’s a good apple taste too and a light hint of oakiness in the aftertaste. It’s also quite thick in texture, like a little syrupy and has a very rich flavour. Along with that there is a hint of dryness and tannins trying to fight their way out. I won’t say I’ll be queuing up desperate to buy it, but it’s good as an alternative to what my normal tipple would be. Maybe it’s worth trying as a cider to have with your dessert? My friend mentioned he thought it was as close as getting to a liqueur without being one.

Would I buy this again?: Yes, but not a first choice.
Overall Rating: 7.5/10

2 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Ian Parker said,

    Wow, this is the business. Strolled in en-spec, brown signposts point the way,easy enough to find. Staff seemed a bit braindead on the day but don’t they always seem that way? ! However,let’s not get distracted here,this cider is the bees kness,I challenge anyone to not find something they’d like here. I’m a bit of a sweet fan and opted for the Stoke Red. The dry stuff to me was as dry as anything I’d tried before, hated it but that’s just me.
    I took a 10l box home of the stoke red, really enjoyed it but by the end of a pint it was getting a bit too sweet. Sweet lovers will be in heaven.Too drinkable, nice orange colour,medium oakiness,incrresing sweetness,nice finish.Highly recommended. Website for all products shows a fantastic price for online sales/delivery. Yertis, Ian.

    • 2

      TheCiderBlog said,

      Gwatkin can be very hit and miss for me. The sweet can be a little too sweet and the dry can be way too dry. There can be a struggle to find something in between that is a happy medium (no pun intended!). The Yarlington Mill is probably one of my favourite of theirs to be honest. A nice drop! It’s good to hear about your journeys so far. It’s well worth going to Dunkertons and Ross-On-Wye if you haven’t already!



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