Magners Original Irish Cider

Review of Magners Original Irish Cider.  Its my first time trying it oddly enough (I had never got around to it).

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Cider:  Original Irish Cider
Cidery:  Magners (C&C Group)
Cidery Location:  County Tipperary in Ireland
ABV:  4.5%
How Supplied:  four pack of 12oz bottles
Style:  commercial Irish cider

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Availability:  wide release (over 50 countries)

Description:  We love making cider, but we reckon there’s only one way to do it properly. That’s why we’re still taking inspiration from the historic methods we used when we started making cider back in 1935. That’s part of the Magners taste.  So in this way we use 17 varieties of apples, waiting until they drop before pressing and filtering them in the traditional way.  We take time to ferment the cider and even more time to let it mature, up to 2 years in fact, tasting it along the way.  Sure, there are faster ways of making cider, but then it wouldn’t be Magners.

Price:  ~ $1.50 / single bottle
Where Bought:  Total Wine
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  Browsing.  I realized I had never tried Magners, which is often one of the first ciders people try.

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First Impression:  Fake orange amber hue.  Nearly still.  Smells of apple juice and a fake chemical scent.

Tasting Notes:  Semi-sweet to semi-dry.  Medium bodied.  Low tartness and acidity.  Hints of bitterness and tannins.  No sourness or funk.  The notes didn’t go too beyond apple, with a touch of caramel.  Quick finish.  Moderate to high apple flavor.  High sessionability.  Low flavor intensity.  Low complexity.

My Opinion:  It was what I was expecting…simple and fake tasting.  It was drier than I was expecting, but that is more typical for European ciders (vs. American commercial ciders).

Most Similar to:  Other commercial ciders, although this had a bit of English cider twist with the hints of bitterness and tannins.

Closing Notes:   Now I can finally say I’ve tried Magners.  I don’t really get why this sells so well, but I guess its easy to drink.

Have you tried Magners?  What did you think?

Dublin’s Pub Irish Cider

Review of Dublin’s Pub Irish Cider, an Irish pub-style cider made in Quebec Canada. Dublin’s Pub also makes Black Velvet and Irish Red cider varieties.

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Cider: Irish Cider
  Dublin’s Pub
Cidery Location:  Quebec Montreal Canada
ABV:  5.0%
How Supplied:  Four pack of 12oz clear glass bottles (although I got a single, despite it saying not for individual retail sale on the bottle lol); kegs

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Availability:  Unknown, but at least Montreal and parts of the U.S.

Cider Description:  The sensorial profile of Dublin’s Pub resembles that of beer, without the bitterness. Thus, the selection of the apple varieties and the wine-making techniques used produce a fairly neutral cider with a round, fresh flavour,without the sharp acidity typical of conventional ciders.

Cidery Description:  From the Middle Ages to the present day, cider has been Ireland’s most popular beverage. Dublin’s Pub is an apple cider made in the purest Irish pub tradition.  Alcoholic and refreshing, Dublin’s Pub’s unique taste is the result of a process involving the crushing of rigorously selected apples and the fermentation of their juice.  Dublin’s Pub can be enjoyed on any number of occasions, such as pub outings or gatherings among friends, and makes a superb accompaniment to a variety of dishes. What’s more, it’s the only cider that brings out the Irishman in you!

Price:  ~$2 for a single bottle?  It was a while ago…
Where Bought:  Special Brews in Lynnwood WA
Where Drank:  home
How Found:  Browsing.  My husband picked it up and I didn’t look too closely before buying…I thought it was actually from Ireland.  There are definitely some drawbacks to having a combination bottle shop & bar; I always come home with more cider than I was expecting to buy.  When I got home I read the bottle and was disappointed to find out this “Irish” cider is actually made in Canada.  Then I had a cider buddy say they thought this cider was pretty bad.  So, it wasn’t at the top of my list to try and has been sitting in the cabinet for awhile.

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First Impression:  Pale straw yellow.  Moderate carbonation (large bubbles).  Basic apple juice scent.

Opinion:  On the drier side of semi-sweet.  Very back sweetened (not so much that it was very sweet, but it was very juice-like).  This is when they add un-fermented juice back in after fermentation, often to bring the alcohol level down to a target as much as to actually sweeten the cider.  Crisp & refreshing but a bit boring and one-dimensional.  Moderate acidity.  Very light tartness.  No bitterness, astringency, tannins, or sourness.  Light bodied.  This cider actually tasted better out of the bottle, which I’ve noticed with some commercial ciders (made it seem not as juice-like and retained more carbonation).  This is a type of cider which should be served very cold.  I was glad I ended the night with this cider, vs. starting it.

Most Similar to:  Possman Pure Cider and Crispin Original.  However, I actually enjoy the Crispin as it has a bit more complexity (tartness) and some tropical notes.

Closing Notes:   I consider this to be an average commercial cider (although its possible its in the craft category…it just doesn’t taste like it).  I’d prefer this to Angry Orchard Crisp Apple and Strongbow Gold Apple for example (mostly as it isn’t crazy sweet & syrupy), but there are many other commercial ciders I’d prefer, such as many Woodchuck varieties, Ace Joker, and Crispin Original & Browns Lane.

Have you tried Dublin’s Pub?  What did you think?