Apple County Cider Co Dabinett (SV) Medium Cider Review

Vital Stats:

Producer: Apple County Cider Co
Cider Name: Dabinett (SV) Medium
Region: Monmouthshire
ABV: 6.5%
Taste: Medium
Served: Lightly chilled 500ml bottle
Smell: Sweet/Rustic apples
Colour: Golden/Amber
Clarity: Clear
Carbonation: Lightly sparkling

Review/Tasting Notes:

From: Apple County Cider Co
Date: 21/10/14

Hello everybody, I’m back on the cider reviewing game once again. Missed me? Or hadn’t even known I had gone? Either way, I’m looking to do a few more reviews in the coming weeks and resume service as normal. In what only felt like maybe a few weeks since my last cider review, it has actually been 4 months! Eek! Damn work has had to get in the way of a good time, hasn’t it! Anyway, my first review since turning 31 is going to be the Dabinett (Single Variety) cider from Apple County Cider Co.

The Apple County Cider Co are a new cider company, which is run by one of the brothers (Ben Culpin) who has previously had a storming success with Ty Gwyn cider. In his 6 years making cider he has won awards such as Great Taste Double Gold Star 2012 and a medal in the Welsh Cider and Perry Society Championships for their Dabinett cider, amongst other awards gained. Therefore it sounds like it I should be in for a treat with this one.

A bit of background info on the company itself reveals that they generally press their apples around November in their hydraulic press on their own farm. This is left to cold ferment for a minimum of 6 months and they use a wine yeast to aid with fermentation. It’s then racked off and enjoys a second (aka malolactic) fermentation. Come June time, it will be bottled, pasteurised and lightly carbonated. The main thing of course is that this is a 100% apple juice cider and no concentrate in sight! Phew! The purists may disagree with the pasteurisation, but being a bottled cider then it’s not surprising either.

This cider itself is listed as a medium, made purely from the bittersweet Dabinett apples and comes in at 6.5% ABV. The marketing blurb tells me it’s made from 100% apple juice from their own orchards, delicately fruity, with a hint of spice and will have a long clean finish. Some fairly standard things in there really. All in all, it’s giving off the right vibes and it’s time to crack it open and see if it can walk the walk too…

It poured lightly sparkling, golden/amber colour and with a lightly sweet, rustic apple aroma on the nose. Although it seemed to have a fairly hyper fizz to begin with, it has settled to just the occasional bubble rising through the glass after 30 seconds.

My first taste is of sweet apples, which is then followed by a short burst of tannins coming through, which has given it a slightly drier, bitter and sharper end to it. It’s one of these ciders that feels balanced, not overpowering, and enjoyable. Acidity is mild to moderate and gives enough tingle on the tongue to get your tastebuds excited. As with all good Dabinett ciders, it just has that distinctive Dabinett taste about it, which I know and love.

Don’t get me wrong, It’s not one of these ciders that has taken my breath away. But, on the other hand, it’s a very good easy-going cider. This is distinctly moreish as the pint goes on. One criticism from me is it’s a little sweeter than I’d tend to normally go for. Not sickly sweet like syrup, but I’m more of a dry cider drinker myself.

Would I buy this again?: Yes
Overall Rating: 7.5/10

Disclaimer: This was a free sample from Apple County Cider Co, however this had no bearing on my review of this cider.


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