Thursday 13 October 2011
Gwynt y Ddraig Gold Medal Cider
"Our Gold Medal cider is a blend of our bittersweet varieties with some of the true sharp varieties of cider apple to produce a very well balanced cider which won us CAMRA's Champion Cider of 2004"
So, not much to expect from this cider then:-)
In all seriousness, I was a little intrigued by this bottle of cider. With such modern looking designs for Black Dragon (etc.) this one looks totally out of place. But, quoting from the bottle above, this is a celebration of their CAMRA win... lets hope that i. this cider isn't from 2004 (cider keeps - but I doubt it keeps that well), and ii. the blend they used in 2004 is still as good in 2011.
It is a lovely colour - to start with. Deep and golden, with little fizz or fuss. And its smell is also deep and rich and cidery. Cider apples create a distinctive smell to a cider, and this has it in buckets. I wish that they wouldn't filter quite so much though... I am sure there would have been more to it without being so harsh with it.
The taste is quite simply gorgeous. True - there is nothing but cider varieties in here. And there is a nice amount of good acid too which offsets the tannin which actually isn't harsh at all, its rounded and mellow. The sweetening (usually a negative for me) rounds off the edges of both sharp and tannin even more, and this is rather too easily drunk! At 7%, you have to be fairly careful!
One thing I was a little surprised with is that the carbonation, whilst low, is very persistent. This works, as it breaks the taste up a little so its not quite so full on.
I am very pleased with this cider indeed. If I had a friend who was learning about cider, they wouldn't see this one for a while - I'd keep it for myself! My only niggle with it is that Gwynt y Ddraig felt that it needed filtering and mucking about with. Shame.
A score of 92/100 and a begrudging Gold apple to the Welshies (surely I am allowed to say that, I have been married to a Welshie for 10 years!!!) Nice one Gwynt y Ddraig!