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Thread: What is real cider?

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    Inndigestion Strongers's Avatar
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    Default What is real cider?

    Do Old Rosie and Thatcher's Heritage count as real cider or does it have to come from a plastic container marked as experiment 'X' on the back bar?
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    Humble Wordsmith ETA's Avatar
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    If we apply CAMRA's logic, real cider would be cider which is conditioned or has undergone secondary ferrmentation in the cask (or, indeed, plastic container) or bottle and is unpasteurised, unfiltered and not served using added CO2 or N2 as a propulsion means (no, please don't get into the cask breather debate here!).

    On the other hand, if you enjoy Thatchers and Old Rosie (I actually quite like both in really hot weather), does it matter?
    Last edited by ETA; 19-06-2014 at 07:53.

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    This Space For Hire Aqualung's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strongers View Post
    Do Old Rosie and Thatcher's Heritage count as real cider or does it have to come from a plastic container marked as experiment 'X' on the back bar?
    This is nearly as tricky a question as "What is Craft Beer?".

    The rules are different to beer but are fairly simple :-

    It should be made entirely from apples and / or pears, ie no manufactured juice concentrate.
    It should not have artificial carbonation, ie no keg.
    It should not have artificial colourings or flavourings.
    It should not have undwergone micro-filtration (whatever that is).

    The problems arise if a producer of whatever size uses some concentrate how would you know and be able to prove it?
    The other issue is fruit flavoured ciders. The definitions are presumably there to outlaw the Global abomination's activities where they take their rubbish and just add squash to it.
    The Spoon's annual cider festival always has one or two flavoured ciders that presumably fall foul of these rules, but they seem fine to me.

    As far as the two mentioned go, I would say Old Rosie yes and Thatcher's Heritage don't know as I don't recall seeing it, but if it's served from a plastic barrel or polypin then it's most likely OK.
    Last edited by Aqualung; 19-06-2014 at 13:23.

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    Fully paid up beer belly Farway's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aqualung View Post
    This is nearly as tricky a question as "What is Craft Beer?".

    The rules are different to beer but are fairly simple :-

    It should be made from entirely from apples and / or pears, ie no manufactured juice concentrate.
    It should not have artificial carbonation, ie no keg.
    It should not have artificial colourings or flavourings.
    It should not have undwergone micro-filtration (whatever that is).

    The problems arise if a producer of whatever size uses some concentrate how would you know and be able to prove it?
    The other issue is fruit flavoured ciders. The definitions are presumably there to outlaw the Global abomination's activities where they take their rubbish and just add squash to it.
    The Spoon's annual cider festival always has one or two flavoured ciders that presumably fall foul of these rules, but they seem fine to me.

    As far as the two mentioned go, I would say Old Rosie yes and Thatcher's Heritage don't know as I don't recall seeing it, but if it's served from a plastic barrel or polypin then it's most likely OK.
    Agree with the above, but pedant in me, there is no such thing as pear cider, made from pears it is called perry

    PS I did try some of the flavoured ciders last year in Weatherspoons, and found them very nice, looking forward to this years festival
    Last edited by Farway; 19-06-2014 at 12:19. Reason: PS & typo
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strongers View Post
    Do Old Rosie and Thatcher's Heritage count as real cider or does it have to come from a plastic container marked as experiment 'X' on the back bar?
    If it has twigs and bits of beak in it it's real.

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    Humble Wordsmith ETA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farway View Post
    Agree with the above, but pedant in me, there is no such thing as pear cider, made from pears it is called perry
    (Here we go...) I agree that if it's just pears, it's perry, and if it's just apples, it's cider. What we used to call 'pear cider' (before Babycham came and destroyed the nation's palates) was a mixture of pear and apple juice fermented the same way as cider/perry.

    btw, in response to Aqualung's note about artificial flavourings, does that include either the lead (as in Pb) they used to put in Somerset cider, or the dead cat/rat/mammal of choise that would often go in 'real' pub cider with or without the brewer's knowledge? Or are these 'permitted' additives?
    Last edited by ETA; 19-06-2014 at 19:12.

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    This Space For Hire Aqualung's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farway View Post
    Agree with the above, but pedant in me, there is no such thing as pear cider, made from pears it is called perry

    PS I did try some of the flavoured ciders last year in Weatherspoons, and found them very nice, looking forward to this years festival
    So am I! There's beetroot, chilli and ginger, rhubarb, raspberry and whisky barrel aged to look forward to. the list is on the Spoons site front page or in their propaganda booklet. There is a Thatcher's Cheddar Valley that I think they had last year. I don't recall seeing "Heritage".

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    I'll stay on me own Gann's Avatar
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    According to one of my wife's extended relatives, who is a farmer is Somerset (pronounced Zumerzet apparently), the only real cider is one usually referred to as Scrumpy and is strong enough to also power the tractor home from whichever neighbours barn the brew kit is located in...
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    Pub researcher (unpaid) rpadam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gann View Post
    According to one of my wife's extended relatives, who is a farmer is Somerset (pronounced Zumerzet apparently), the only real cider is one usually referred to as Scrumpy and is strong enough to also power the tractor home from whichever neighbours barn the brew kit is located in...
    in Zumerset, that's cider as in 'ziiderr'...

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    Real Ale Drinker Brewguru's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strongers View Post
    Do Old Rosie and Thatcher's Heritage count as real cider or does it have to come from a plastic container marked as experiment 'X' on the back bar?
    I don't know much about this but a bit more than most from what I can see.

    These are both ciders as such they are fermented from juiced apples but here in Somerset there are "cider snobs" who take the Reinheitsgebot equivalent for cider and make it look positively broad minded. Heritage is actually not made in the traditional way, Thatchers use a concentrate. I don't know of Old Rosie.

    The genuine cider makers use apples that have been grown for cider. If you ever ate one you'd spit it out, a very dry floury texture, not much sweetness and quite sour in general. These have names like Kingston Black, Dabinett etc. Perry is the equivalent, made from Perry pears which I suspect would also be fairly inedible.
    Pear cider thus is treated with scorn around here, but is simply as others have said, cider with pear juice added.

    Of course real cider, farmhouse cider, scrumpy or whatever you want to call it is never filtered, hence is hazy which is at least what Thatchers do with Heritage, Cheddar Valley and Traditional. Heritage I am told, is an unfiltered non carbonated version of Thatchers Gold Kegged cider.

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