Tuesday, 17 January 2012
Aston Manor Malvern Press 81
Cider in a bottle or cider on draught. That's what I review on here. No cans. Anything that is deemed to be suitable for cans is generally of the Strongbow ilk - and I have to draw the line somewhere. Now, Press 81 is a bit of a challenge to that. Its a bottle shaped can... so, in that I try to keep an open mind I will let it pass and give them the benefit of the doubt. Mind you, its even got the 'chill till the thing-a-ma-jig turns blue' so really shouldn't have qualified!
And why is it called Press '81'? Well (and I have to take my hat off to the creativity of this) its the 81st recipe thought up by the cider maker. Now, I am probably recorded as having said that cider doesn't have a recipe, so I cannot hide from that. However, I can only figure that they went through a list of apple varieties, crossing 80 of their attempts out before having that eureka moment.
Being produced by Aston Manor, I am not surprised by the can and the fippery. However, I don't hate their ciders - well, not all of them. So when it pours out nice and golden with a bittersweet aroma (and quite a thick one) I am pleased.
This doesn't last unfortunately. The drink is quite watery to the taste, and the thickness of the bittersweet is not backed up by the drink itself. The aftertaste is equally short on flavour, due to the wateriness of it all. There is little acid, and quite a sweetness that is a bit confuddling to me - they say on the bottle that there are no colours, flavourings or sweeteners. I can believe this, although it has been sweetened somehow - probably by apple juice and pasteurisation (it does have that juicy taste to it).
On the whole, its not a terrible cider - I would say that it is one of Aston Manor's better ciders in fact. However, I think its one of those that I would encourage my cider friend to move on from rather than to.
A score of 61 is fair; for me that is anyway. It has got fruit in it, but it is in a can still - a bottle shaped one:-)