Dirty Granny


It is late August in Australia, and we are not used to the cold, it’s like putting a camel in the middle of Antarctica we are just woefully ill equipped for anything below 10 degrees.

Today, finally a warmer day came along, and it oddly coincided with me listening to some warm sounding reggae music, it’s cheerful and happy and it’s time to put the cold days behind me.

It is in this environment, that the apple cider ‘Dirty Granny’ skips along and places itself in front of me, the deliciously dark bubbling glass of apple effervescence.

I feel marketing is a little misleading on this one, it’s not particularly bad marketing in fact It is certainly one of the best labels and marketing efforts I have seen so far in the cider realm, the question I ponder is does this type of marketing fit what is actually in the bottle.


The marketing is cheeky, clever and has a youth fresh feel, even though it is called ‘Dirty Granny’ it is marketed with a smile, the label and the typeface is cleverly all crochet giving us the warm fuzzy feeling of going to nanna’s place,  once you are there nanna is sinking down a half dozen apple ciders.

On the back of the label it reads (GRANNY SMITH APPLES MAY OR MAY NOT HAVE BEEN USED IN THE MAKING OF THIS CIDER) it was at this point I really started to have a good chuckle Matilda bay, matured cider, granny smith apples Dirty Granny – nice.

The cider however is a little different to the marketing it is a deep and brooding cider, it is a premium product and one that makes you really ponder over it’s different flavours.

Maybe a dark brown studious feel, Cambridge lecture goer, intelligent cider appreciator some script delicate lines sort of thing.

This is the first time I have had the chance to have a properly matured cider and I was impressed. Matured ciders unlock some flavours that make the realm of apple cider infinitely more interesting and worth exploring.

It made me wonder what would happen if you took a cloudy cider like James Squire Orchard Crush and matured it, I am sure it would create something that would leave other ciders miles behind.

I easily sank 5 of these ciders on a Friday afternoon, this was a really pleasant drop and easy to drink, nice work Matilda bay.

James Squire Orchard Crush Apple Cider


There is something oppressive about the apple, put there in your lunch box as a kid while you jealously watch others have Tiny Teddies or Milky Ways.

Apples are there with you through your life, in lunch rooms in the workplace wherever western civilization is the apple is. I have never been excited in my life to have an apple, it’s the filler of foods the uninspiring commonality and it’s supposed to be good for you!

So I guess it shouldn’t be a big surprise that so many apple ciders are just as uninspiring to drink, most try to get away with being like an alcho-pop which are very alcoholic and give a hangover equivalent to one really bad bottle of $8 wine.

However every now and then a cider rises above the other,  James Squire orchard crush is one of these.

Looking at this label, I would never in my life have guessed this was the cider to end all ciders.

The label makes me think ‘Coles supermarket fresh food people’ and it very nearly made me miss this cider altogether. However the quality of James Squire brand spoke for the quality of the cider.

The first thing that separates this cider from many others is it’s cloudyness. It’s milky and the apple flavours permeate throughout the drink giving it many complex flavours.

The cider flavour has a crisp delicate sharp edge, it is spicy sometimes pear like but never so much that the pear takes over.

It is super refreshing, and I felt pretty overwhelmed by just complex this cider was.

This is a premium cider, if you are a cider lover I would suggest you get your hands on as much of this as you can.


Old Rosie Cloudy Cider


Recently I have had a few bad experiences with cider and I thought it prudent to help my fellow cider appreciator to decipher the wheat from the chaff.

Old Rosie, plays on the old ‘wacky but cool’  marketing  taken up by so many vineyards these days.  According the back of the label in the part that is not in some strange eastern European language, it is named after an Aveling and porter steam roller that was loved by everybody in the Weston’s family. What the hell this steam roller has to do with cider has got me beat, unless of course it was used to roll over the apples to make the cider.

Cider, I have learnt now from old Rosie probably does not suit being aged in an Oak vat, the result is having something that tastes like an apple that is fried in bacon fat.

The smoky flavors are so strong that it overwhelms any subtle taste of the apple which is a shame because the apples do seem to have a very nice flavor that could make a well established brand like Magners hide in a small cave somewhere. It also should be mentioned that old Rosie make a jug that looks like something that any redneck from some mountain district be proud of. The jug is original in a kooky way and if you showed up at a posh type party with one of these jugs people would get a few laughs and the girls would instantly sleep with you.  Unless of course you had a mullet and played the banjo.

This is quite strong it’s 7.3% and It took not long for me to feel pretty happy on this stuff, also this is an English cider something I feel slightly guilty about drinking while the ashes is on.

This Cider would be good at a party when you wanted to get tanked really fast, but wanted a yuppie enough drink to make you look different and alternative that is if you can get past the smoky flavor.