Waitrose 2011 Vintage Herefordshire Cider (made by Westons)
I was in a Waitrose the other day, observing the bourgeois fascination with all forms of pretentious food. Well, actually I was looking for cider. Because that, as the phrase has it, is how I roll. I found a couple of interseting looking numbers and settled on a 2011 Vintage Herefordshire made by Westons, who I reckon are just about the best of the larger scale cidermakers at the moment.
The bottle is nothing special, brown bottle glass with a simple label that has rather too many typefaces for my taste. It claims that the cider has hints of vanilla, of which more anon. It also gives the vital stats of the tipple — 3.5 units in a bottle, and a round 7 per cent abv. The apples mentioned are Dabinett and Michelin and there is also a blurb about the cider mill that Westons run over at Much Marcle.
When I poured it out the cider was a gorgeous light yellow and fairly cloudy, pretty much like an even stiller Old Rosie. The nose is sharp and a bit on the sour side. Like inhaling a lime.
The body is rather light but there is a nice balance to it. Its got all that bittersweet contrast to it without being too vinegary. The sharpness was balanced out by a soft mellow note, I guess that was what they were going on about when they were saying there were hints of vanilla.
Overall, a very drinkable little cider this. Right in the tradition of proper West Country cider. It is softer round the edges, but still muscular and complex enough to be very much worth drinking.
2013-04-29 by Charlie Harvey