Lyme Bay Sparkling Cider Review

Vital Stats:

Producer: Lyme Bay
Cider Name: Sparkling Cider
Region: Devon
ABV: 4.8%
Taste: Medium
Served: Lightly chilled 500ml bottle
Smell: Ripe apples
Colour: Golden/Amber
Clarity: Clear
Carbonation: Lightly sparkling

Review/Tasting Notes:

Purchased From: Bristol Cider Shop
Date: 29/01/13

Today has been one of those days for me that have actually been ok. Work didn’t piss me off as much as it sometimes can, I had a lovely spaghetti bolognese for dinner and now time to settle down with a few ciders, whilst I decide on what my next cider & food adventure will be tomorrow. My first cider of the evening is the Lyme Bay Sparkling Cider.

This is my 2nd Lyme Bay cider I have ever had, after the Jack Ratt cider I had previously, which was a thorough success. Lyme Bay are a Devon based producer situated right on the Devon/Somerset border, who started out in the cider making market and have since ventured into the winemaking too (cheers for correction Alan :)). It’s actually quite interesting to hear of someone going from cider to winemaking, as it’s usually the other way around, with everyone seeming to want to jump on the cider bangwagon. As for awards this cider has been given, last year it was awarded Bronze at the ‘Taste of the West Awards’. With that in mind, I’m hoping this one lives up to that billing and is as good as its sibling the Jack Ratt.

I poured the cider and it was a bright golden amber like colour and had a large frothy head. As I was hoping, the head settled down quickly and you are left with a gentle sparkle in the glass. The aroma is fairly light, but has a decent ripe apple smell going on and all very satisfying. After all that, I really should take my first sip shouldn’t I?!?

From taking that sip it feels fairly fruity and sweet to begin with, has a lightly sour twist to the middle of it and finishes with a mild oak aftertaste and some dryness. Tannins are fairly mild on this and it feels fairly in balance with the acidity too. Nothing seems to be overpowering this in any shape or form. I have to say it’s very easy drinking and just one of these ciders you could happily have chilled on a summer’s day down in Devon. My only problem with it is the flavour is not as full and long-lasting as I was hoping for. Of what it does have it is decent, though it’s not very challenging at the same time. It’s just lacking that killer punch and pizzazz to it, which is a shame really.

Would I buy this again?: Probably, but not a first choice.
Overall Rating: 7/10

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