Monday 18 April 2011

Tesco's Finest Oak Matured Still Cider

This one came as a bit of a surprise to me. Not particularly because of its greatness - although its not a bad cider - but because I failed to read the label and thought I was getting yet another sparkling cider. So I was a little taken aback when I poured it to find it flat and still. I even checked the cap to see if it had been loose before I looked at the label. Doh!

Well, this is a sparkling... I mean, still cider from Tesco's. A rare breed among supermarket ciders indeed. Produced for them by Westons to a 'traditional recipe'... it certainly has the look of a decent cider. And yes, I am bored having to bang on about 'real' vs. 'non real' cider. As someone once said (I think actually about Thatchers); "There is more that united us than separates us". Quite true.

There isn't much of a smell to this one, but after a few sips it doesn't really matter. I do like still ciders, and this one has a prertty gentle tannin and flavour - even smokey. You miss these things in a carbonated cider (I think) - the bubbles knock some of the more delicate profile of cider out of sight. Being still though, it tastes a good deal more sweet than its medium dry label. and this does mask any complex aftertaste.

Overall, I felt it lacked a character that would make it more special. Like so many of the more common brands I have tried so far, I think the pasteurisation and filtration have removed a lot of its charisma. This tends to leave a fairly save flavour. In fact (and probably because it is a still cider) I did note that I could taste a bit of a cooked apple flavour to it as well.

Never the less, its not a bad cider and once again the Tesco cider seems to have done better than its Sainsbury rival. Now if only they could get the rest of their cider range sorted out!!

A score of 66/100


  1. Overall a very nice cider, maybe a little too gentle and sweet, but still nice. I think I even taste a little bit of the oak in here. It also has a "white wine" feel to with a small acid kick. Refreshing.
    Better than I expected, and better than some Westons ciders under their own label.

  2. Its not a bad cider but on reflection it definitely lacks any individualism or great character. I think I would stand on my scoring of this one... there are better ciders that grace the shelves of Tesco. There are also much worse:-)

  3. Hello, I noticed a mistake: this one is (was) manufactured by Westons, not Thatchers.
    This affects both the tag and the text itself.

  4. Oh my goodness, you are absolutely right!! Having checked the original image (and blowing it up to make sure) I can indeed confirm that this is made by Westons and not Thatchers. Doh!

    One thing I haven't changed is the reference of the quote - it was made about Thatchers and so is still relevant.

    Many thanks for the comment - I am so glad that there are observant people looking at this blog!!

  5. I have to disagree here.

    Of the many ciders that are now gracing the shelves of our local supermarkets, this still cider that is prepared by H Weston & Sons for Tesco, is one of the best currently available in the UK.

    Cider can be still or sparkling, and yes there are differences, but they all tend to be very enjoyable!

    I hope other supermarkets expand their product range in a similar fashion!

  6. Better than many 'Tesco' (or generic brand) ciders, but... I guess I have just been spoiled for choice!

    One thing I would suggest i to get hold of the 'Vintage' ranges - Thatchers, Sheppy's etc. These really are the best supermarkets have to offer.