A special edition cider using 18 different apple varieties sourced from across Tasmania’s Huon Valley has scooped the pool at this year’s Australian Cider Awards.
On Friday night Willie Smith’s was honoured in front of almost 100 people at the national awards gala dinner, with its Willie Smith’s 18 Varieties limited edition taking out the Best in Show award.
Judges said the product was very true to type – a medium cider in the traditional style – describing it as “lifted … with a lingering fruit flavour and an attractive bitterness on finish”.
Willie Smith’s co-owner Sam Reid said the prestigious award was a great reward for the entire crew at the Grove business, which is based on a fourth-generation organic apple farm.
“We couldn’t be happier with this product because it showcases what is great about Willie Smith’s – we are small enough to make really interesting cider but large enough to get it out to enough people to educate and influence the category.”
Willie Smith’s 18 Varieties won 3 trophies – Best in Show, Best Cider and Best Australian Cider or Perry.
Orange-based Borrodell Vineyard also won a gold medal with their Heritage Apple Cider while Adelaide Hills business, The Hills Cider Company, walked away with two best in class awards.
Cider Australia Vice President Warwick Billings said judges were impressed with the standard on display as they worked their way through 155 entries across 18 classes.
“This year there were almost double the number of medals awarded resulting from a significant increase in bronzes, which indicates that Australian producers are refining their cider making skills,” Mr Billings said.
“With such rapid improvement in the overall quality of our local ciders since the Awards began five years ago, we expect to see even more exceptional Australian ciders in future years.”
- Best in Show: Willie Smith’s Organic Cider (18 Varieties)
- Best Cider: Willie Smith’s Organic Cider (18 Varieties)
- Best Australian Cider or Perry: Willie Smith’s Organic Cider (18 Varieties)
Best in Class
- 1A New World Dry Cider: Jachmann Apple Co, Lady William Apple Cider 500ml
- 1B Traditional Dry Cider: Borrodell Vineyard, Borrodell Vineyard’s Heritage Apple Cider
- 2A New World Medium Cider: The Hills Cider Company, Apple Cider
- 2B Traditional Medium Cider: Willie Smith’s Organic Cider (18 Varieties)
- 3A New World Sweet Cider: Flying Brick Cider Co, Flying Brick Original Cider
- 3B Traditional Sweet Cider: Seven Oaks Farmhouse Cider, Kingston Black
- 4A/B Method Traditional Cider: 321 Cider, 321 Cider Methode Traditionelle Cuvee
- 5A New World Dry Perry: Core Cider Company, Perry
- 6A New World Medium Perry: The Hills Cider Company, Pear Cider
- 7A New World Sweet Perry: The Barossa Valley Cider Company, Squashed Pear Cider
- 8A/B Method Traditional Perry: Frank’s Cider, Frank’s Perry (Methode Champenoise)
- 9 Cider or Perry with Fruit: Cheeky Rascal Cider, Passion Fruit Pink Lady
- 10 Specialty/Experimental Cider or Perry: Batlow Cider, Batlow OPA Cider
- 11 Ice Cider or Perry: Small Acres Cyder, Small Acres Cyder Pomona Ice 2015
- 12 Pommeau, Henry of Harcourt, G Del