ON sale for half-price at only £1.67 from Tesco, I couldn’t resist this four-pack of cider. Especially as this is one of the newly popular original ciders from one of the biggest cider producers in the country. If you’ve had one of the white ciders or super-strength ciders, then chances are that you’ve had a Gaymers without realising. I’m happy then, to have Gaymers Original Cider. A Gaymers that doesn’t hide behind a different brand name.
The four-pack itself isn’t particularly flashy. But it does the job. Sort of. That’s because after carefully removing one of the bottles, it was like removing the keystone from a bridge. Bottles falling all over the place.
The bottles themselves, and remember, there are bigger versions on sale, look different to the competition. Gone is the dark, elegant curves of the competition. Because here is a stocky, robust looking green bottle. A bottle with “Est 1770” and “Gaymer Cider Company” embossed upon it.
It has a big, wrap around neck label. One that is gold and makes the bottle look as though it’s wearing a dinner jacket.
Under the Gaymers logo, the one that looks like a crown with flames shooting out of each side, we learn that this is “Cold filtered”. What that means, I don’t know. But this is the first cider I’ve seen that is. It goes on to explain that this is “for a crisp refreshing taste”. Sadly, the back of the neck label doesn’t offer any more of an explanation.
All we get is the standard “drink responsibly” message and website. Look hard enough though, and you do see one thing that is unusual. There is a tiny symbol saying that Gaymer is a member of “The National Association of Cider Makers”. Never heard of it, but I’m glad that there is one.
The main front label is nothing out of the ordinary for a cider.
Everything is clear and readable. Just lacking the character and personality of a beer or ale bottle label. There’s little on here that isn’t elsewhere on the front of this bottle. The established date is worth returning to, however. That’s because 1770 is a seriously long time ago. It means that when Gaymer first started producing cider, we had a mad king, and much of North America. Amazing.
Besides all the facts on the front label that we already know, are a few that we don’t. The vital statistics are on there. That this is a 330 millilitre bottle. And that it has 4.5% alcoholic volume. Nothing exceptional there then. The same goes for the prominent, capitalised words “Serve Over Ice”. I think that there may be some bandwagon jumping going on here.
Spinning the bottle around reveals a miniscule label.
It’s a cider so there’s nothing to read, right? Wrong. For the first time, there is a proper, beer style description on the background of Gaymers Original Cider. We get to learn that this cider, established in 1770, is made with traditional cider pressing methods. That is made from English apples. And that it has a particularly crisp, refreshing and smooth taste. No mention of the word ‘dry’, so I’m happy.
There are a few other juicy details on the back too. This bottle has 1.5 UK units of alcohol. It contains sulphites. And it describes itself as a “Medium Cider”. Considering how strong it is, I can’t disagree with that.
With all of that out of the way, it’s time to answer some questions. What is Gaymer Original Cider like? And is it better than my current favourite, Magners Irish Cider?
I opted for a handful of ice cubes in the glass this time. The colour is a deep-ish golden-yellow apple colour. There’s no head and not that much fizz in the glass. The smell is apple-y. Much as you would expect and hope for from a cider. I like it. Even though it’s not particularly natural. It reminds of that other Gaymer cider, K. Which is exactly what I was hoping for.
The taste however, reminds me more of those less satisfying Gaymer ciders; the white ciders. It does have a taste of apples. But one that is light in character, and one that doesn’t taste particularly high-quality.
But don’t get me wrong, there is plenty to enjoy with Gaymers Original Cider. The light, apple-y taste is still very nice. The character isn’t dry, but sweet. Especially when you have plenty of ice in the glass. Something I like a lot. It also checks those other important cider boxes by being crisp and refreshing. What with the added smoothness by not being gassy, it does everything it promises on the label.
Even with all these good things, I can’t quite topple Magners from its perch as top Medium Cider. It simply doesn’t have enough flavour for my liking. And there is something about the quality of ingredients that seems synthetic.
Where does this leave Gaymers Original Cider? It’s very good, but just short of excellent. If you can find it at the price I did, then it is excellent value and well worth trying.
Have you tried Gaymers Original Cider? What did you think?
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