Thatchers Cider’s Redstreak cider has been awarded the top award, Supreme Champion, at the International Cider Challenge 2017. One of the industry’s highest accolades, the International Cider Challenge is an annual competition organised by trade publication Drinks Retailing News, regularly attracting hundreds of entries from across the globe.
Redstreak, part of the Thatchers Cider Barn range, is an 8.4% single variety cider made from local Somerset Redstreak apples.
To create the Cider Barn range, cidermakers at Thatchers use their knowledge of the apples from each harvest to work with a single variety, or combine two varieties together that balance and complement each other.
The Somerset Redstreak bittersweet apple is high in tannin and big on flavour, creating the Redstreak cider that is bold and peppery, with a spicy apple pie flavour, smooth feel and deep rich colour.
The cidermakers at Myrtle Farm have embraced the cuvage technique in this cider, where the apples are milled and then held for a day before pressing out the juice, so developing the best flavour for this variety.
Thatchers also scooped a total of 8 other medals for its ciders in the International Cider Challenge – including silver medals for Thatchers Gold, Cider Barn Spartan and Stan’s Barrel Roller, and Bronze awards for Thatchers Vintage, Katy, and the third in the Cider Barn range, Morgan Sweet & Grenadier.
Martin Thatcher, fourth generation cidermaker says, “Being able to produce limited edition ciders with some of our favourite apple varieties of each harvest is a real joy. We’re absolutely delighted that the judges singled out Redstreak as their Supreme Champion. This cider has always been a winner in our eyes, and we’re thrilled they agree.”
This year the expert panel of judges, headed by tasting chairman Pete Brown, included drinks buyers, cider experts and journalists, teasing out the best ciders the world has to offer. Entries came from as far afield as Australia, Czech Republic and the USA. Each cider was tasted blind by the 16 strong panel.
Pete Brown said, “Our Supreme Champion Redstreak just had it all. Thatchers is currently doing an enormous amount of work to educate people on the properties of different apple varieties, how they work individually and how they combine. The pace and scope of what some people refer to as “innovation” in the category is in danger of confusing what cider is supposed to be about – great apples, given their best expression. And that’s what we celebrate here.”
Redstreak is available in Thatchers Cider Shop at Myrtle Farm, Sandford, or online at www.thatcherscider.co.uk