Paynters Reserve Cider

My name is Yvonne Lorkin and I am a cider nut.  While wine is my core business (see what I did there), at least a couple of times a week I’ll treat myself to a glass something amazing made from our old friend the apple.

One of my favourite new ciders comes from Paynter’s, winners of the 2014 NZ Champion Cider Trophypayntercider05

The Paynters Reserve Cider is glossy and golden in the glass, with incredibly tiny, fine bubbles and has lifted bittersweet apple intensity on the nose, a palate with cleansing, spicy kick and a squeak of pure apple sweetness on its super-long finish.

“I’m making cider because I want to change the face of the cider industry,” says Paul Paynter, who comes from a winemaking and orcharding background.  “Here it’s mostly made from concentrate, is very sweet, lacks complexity and is mainly a delivery mechanism for alcohol to youngsters on a Saturday night.  That’s cheap and profitable, but not very inspiring”

If great wine is made in the vineyard then great cider must be made in the orchard.  “I know about growing apples as we’ve been doing it since at least 1865” says Paul.  “An English cider grower once asked me if I planned to grow ‘standard orchards’ or ‘bush orchards’.  The answer was neither.  Standard orchards were what my grandfather planted in the 1920’s and bush orchards are what he planted in 1960.  Apples are the same as grapes – it’s all about harvesting light and traditional growing systems don’t do that well”.

A few years ago Paul started planting test trees of cider varieties and fermenting with a friend.  “We learned a lot, mostly that we were ignorant beyond belief!  But now I’ve planted 4 small blocks of cider apples, visited 20 producers in Europe and the US and have an idea of where I’m heading.  NZ can make the best cider in the world; maybe I can make the best cider in the world.  It’s going to take 20 years and probably one of my sons will take the glory and make the money.  But I’m ok with that”.

 

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