– “Natural with good branding. Lacking character and strength”.

[Why you should read …Ever wondered how good the cider is from Devon? Read on to find out …].

(Please note: Cold virus present when sampling).

The Good

“Strong branding”.

“Moderate carbonation”.

“Natural flavour and smell”.

“Not unpleasant”.

“Well balanced”.


The Bad

“Lacking sweetness”.

“Lacking character”.

“Very weak acidity”.

“No dryness”.

“Weak aftertaste”.

“Watery mouthfeel”.




A Context

Whilst Somerset and Hereford have provided many of the West Country ciders I’ve reviewed, Devon seems to be a county a little quiet on cider innovation. A while back, whilst at Liverpool’s BrewDog, I sampled a Sandford orchards Devon Red (red) cider bottle. This was the first time I realised that some widespread ciders were made in Devon.

This year I’ve captured another Devon Red bottle for review purposes… (cloudy sparkling).

B Production setting

The Devon countryside lends itself to cider production. The name “Devon” Red, also suggests a good level of West Country precipitation, from it’s Devon location. Quicke’s orchards press the apples used, and Sandford’s guarantee that all apples used are grown within 30 miles of their production site. This means these orchards are just a short drive away from the Creedy valley, where Sandford’s is based (At The Cider Works of Crediton, Devon). The Cider Works were established here in 1935, yet they’ve been recently restored, suggesting the traditional values claimed, may not be fully fledged yet. The bottle consolidates this, suggesting Sandford’s orchards has only been established since 2002.

C Price and Practicality

Looking at costs then, 2 bottles would be needed to reach the 3-4 unit recommended maximum alcohol intake. This means a spend of £2.58. Slightly more expensive then than canned Thatchers, and most stronger bottles where only 1 is required. Whilst 42p cheaper than Stan’s barrel roller, the drink is rather costly even from Aldi’s special buys, where it was purchased. Since 2 bottles at 4.6% ABV of 500ml provide 4.6 units, the product isn’t totally practical for safe consumption either. Bit of a shame…

D Packaging

With this product first produced so recently in 2011, it seems a little silly to have the slogan “true to our roots”. At least they’ve cleverly amended the font, appearing to have roots emerging from this motto.

Except the year and slogan, the branding is actually very good though. The bottle front displays an eye-catching, and symmetrical tree image, with identical roots and branches. The Sandford’s orchards are clearly written twice on the labels, suggesting pride in local apples used. The reverse bottle label provides an identical product description to that on the website. One that is concise, informative, clearly laid out, and that supplies a web-link, bottle capacity, and strength information. If anything, the background information on the bottle is even better than the website! The white on black text keeps things quick and easy to read. Very good branding overall.

E Taste expectations

At Quicke’s, a wide range of apple varieties are grown. Clearly making the most of the red limestone rich soils that Sandford’s mention on their website. This soil is supposedly particularly fertile. This provides cattle with thick and lush grasses, aswell as “pomace”, following the pressing process. Used apple varieties include: Yarlington mill, Tremlett’s bitter, and Woodbine. Tremlett’s bitter seems a good variety, as it added considerable character to Stan’s barrel roller, not present in leaf Twister, in it’s absence.

This leads me to expect a cider with some bitterness. Hopefully the producers recognise that this can dominate however, and have effectively balanced the drink.

The website claims this cider is a medium-dry product, possessing notable fruit levels.

I’d therefore hope, for a naturally sweet drink, with medium dryness. Carbonation should at least be moderate, yet the experience, should be subtle enough to avoid ending the session after just one bottle. The website backs this up, with the assertion of a session cider.

I am going in without expectations (blind) for mouthfeel, tang, and aroma.


The smell was very sweet and natural, accompanied by a generous froth that persisted for a short time. It tasted slightly tangy, although no more than a hint of acidity was present. The smell cut off quickly, and on subsequent inhalations, was significantly diminished.


Carbonation level was moderate to high, with a reasonable number of bubbles present.

It’s watery body didn’t carry through much tang. This was weak, only lasting briefly following sips. After tasting, no notable dryness was apparent. Instead, minimal aftertaste with slight bitterness, emerged. All a bit too subtle… Sweetness was well balanced with tang, although both were a little weak. Initially, the drink was fairly watery, fading into a watery aftertaste too.

The aftertaste didn’t emerge for a while, until the watery nature subsided, and when it did, it was just a faint hint of bitterness, from the Tremlett’s bitter apples.

Overall, Devon Red was natural tasting, but very weak, with limited bitterness and sweetness.


Natural with good branding. Lacking character and strength.

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New alcohol guidelines: What you need to know – BBC News

Food for thought

1) State 1 thing you liked about the article above, in the comments section below.

2) State 1 thing you would like improved, in the comments section below.

3) State 1 thing you would like to see in future articles.

4) Consider 1 relatable experience that the words above remind you of.

5) What is your favourite drink and why?

6) If you could change 1 thing about your life, what would it be?

7) What was your favourite moment of the previous week?

8) Why was that your favourite moment?

Closing statement 

Reaseaorg blog is working on its content to enhance viewer experience. Over the previous few years, we have been gaining momentum until recently, and are currently looking at ways to continue to improve user experience of our blog.

We deeply thank all 55 of our followers, especially those who are still reading at this point in the article. You really do shape our content, and maintain our focus on producing content which appeals to our audience. Based on WordPress insights, we have learnt that certain types of product reviews are most popular, and our movie reviews are in need of the greatest modification to enhance viewing statistics. 

Please feel free to advertise related content in the comments below, but all I ask is that you please be respectful. I have had some comments recently, which have gone against the spirit of my blog. 

That is to be a friendly place for fans of Horror, Movies, Drinks, and Adventures, and particularly those who are interested in writing or reading engaging content. 

It is not a place for those who posted links of an explicit nature, reducing visibility of helpful comments, providing insight for my future blog writing. 

I thank all of those who have liked my articles, but I won’t ask you to press like on any of my content, unless you do actually like it, as it helps me to gather further accurate information about the types of articles you, the reader, actually would like to see moving forward. 

Please comment below with ideas for future content, or any thoughts not covered by the points outlined above.

I will continue to post this statement on articles to come, to ensure optimal visibility for viewers. A big thank you to Neil Patel, for producing a helpful video on search engine optimisation (SEO), to assist my content popularity. I hope it helps anyone else who has content online to get their voice heard, be it through writing or video, or other creative forms of expression online.

Based on insights gained, I have increased my blog content article length, introduced a “food for thought” section to encourage creator-viewer engagement, introduced a “why you should read” tag-line under each article title, added a closing statement which will be used on future articles for the same purpose of updating you on how the blog is progressing, and increased content from my critical eye.

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Photo credits: Sandford Orchards Devon Red Crisp & Fruity Medium Cider – 500ml | Greendale Farm Shop

Photo edits: Reasea.org 

Tags: #Reaseaorg #reasonedandseasoned #ciderreview #cider # #Devonred #devon #red #Tremlett’s #bitter #liverpool #brewdog #woodbine

Tags 2: #Reaseaorg #reasonedandseasoned #ciderreview #cider # #Devonred #devon #red #Tremlett’s #bitter #liverpool #brewdog #woodbine

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