Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Asda 'Extra Special' Vintage Cider 2012


It's been a while since I tried a supermarkets own cider... and I also realise that, of the supermarkets, the one I know least about is Asda. No real reason why... just missed them out. Well, this review hopefully goes a little way to redress the balance.

Well, what are the first observations about the bottle... it looks familiar. In fact, it looks very much like the Tesco version of Vintage if I am not mistaken. And the shape of the bottle? Well, Weston's is the first thing that comes to mind. I shall not judge based on that. Lets see what it tastes like. On the label it claims to be 'Dry and Crisp with a subtle Spiciness'... we shall see.

It is lightly golden and pours out with a moderate fizz. It is bright, and at 7.3% it fits in with the designed percentage of other vintages made by the same company. The smell is moderately tannic and fruity - I am sure there is some acid in here too. Actually it is quite pleasant and balanced... I have suggested to several recently that, if all they can get is supermarket 'Vintages' then that is the best to go for in the supermarket. Sure, I have yet to find one that really lights me up (though the Sheppy's, Aspalls and Henney's Vintages are very good indeed), but if you want a cider that has more than the usual offerings then these are a safe bet.

First taste is actually rather sharp. It is a bit watery and sweet too. Towards the end of the mouthful the tannins do come through though - light, not drying but balancing the drink out. I would say this is less 'safe' than I was expecting... there are some vanilla flavours in here making it more interesting... however, it is quite thin and watery. It certainly isn't dry by any stretch, although if I am judging the claim on the label I am actually pleasantly surprised. It is quite crisp and there is a bit of spiciness too.

The aftertaste is moderate in length and the sweetness wins through the other flavours at the end.

I am not sure about this cider. It is different, although not all the differences are brilliant. Saying that, it is drinkable... I guess what I feel about this cider is summed up by the ingredients list, which is rather helpfully on the back label: Apple juice, Water, Glucose, Sugar, Carbon Dioxide, Lactic and Malic Acid... so sweet, slightly watery but interesting.

It scores 62/100 which is shy of an apple, but above average.


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