Westons Cider: official cider of the Bristol Harbour Festival

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It’s Bristol Harbour Festival time (July 17th to 19th): a three day event that takes place along a two mile stretch of the historic Harbourside, from the ss Great Britain to M Shed and from Queen Square to Castle Park. With seven different areas, the festival will feature dance, music, a busy on-water programme and stunning circus performances – as well as plenty of food and drink.

Westons Stowford Press is the official cider of the festival, with the UK’s third largest draught cider brand available from all of the bars across the festival site. Westons are also taking over a corner of Queen Square, where you’ll find a cider bar selling the full range of Westons ciders.

Westons has been making English cider using traditional techniques since 1880. The Bristol Harbour Festival is the first where Westons are showcasing Henry Westons, Old Rosie and Wyld Wood together under the new “Westons Crafted Ciders” umbrella. All of the old favourites will be on offer, as well as five limited edition ciders that were released earlier this year: three flavoured Old Rosie cloudy ciders (Rhubarb, Elderflower and Cloudy Lemonade), as well as Henry Westons Single Orchard and Henry Westons 1880.

Look out for the cider sampler trays at the Harbour Festival, where you’ll be able to try all of the Westons varieties…and you’ll also have a chance to win a case of cider by voting for your favourite “team” via Twitter, using the hashtags #TeamWyld, #TeamRosie, #TeamHenry or #TeamStowford.


Westons Ciders


Westons kindly sent me a bottle each of Wyld Wood, Henry Westons and Old Rosie to try, to work out which team I’d fall into. It was a tough decision…but here are my thoughts…


Wyld Wood: This 6% organic cider is described as “intensely fruity” on the bottle, but on opening, it smells pretty tangy. It was pretty fizzy when first poured, but this fizzled out quite quickly. With a decent apple skin flavour and a slight dryness on swallowing, it’s perfectly drinkable but not necessarily my cup of tea.


Henry Westons: Coming in at 8.2%, this is the strongest of the bunch. I love the classy-looking branding, with the bottle stating that this 2014 vintage is oak aged and medium dry. Again, the fizziness dissipates pretty quickly, and the smell is a lot fresher than that of the Wyld Wood. The flavours are pretty well-rounded and it’s a lot smoother than I was expecting for an 8.2% cider…


Old Rosie: All of these are pretty strong…the cloudy Old Rosie comes in at 7.3%! Again matured in oak vats, there’s a natural sediment at the bottom of the bottle that requires gentle inverting to blend in. Named after a steam roller (!), Old Rosie is also lightly sparkling, with a good, fresh, green apple smell. The flavour is fairly crisp and light, with some sourness coming through…Westons claim it’s a dry cider, but I find it pretty refreshing. Definitely my favourite of the three.


It seems that I’m firmly in the #TeamRosie camp – head along to the Westons bar on Queen Square this weekend to see which is your favourite!


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