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McCashin’s Brewery Wins Supreme Cider Award in Ireland

McCashin’s Brewery Wins Supreme Cider Award in Ireland

A sugar-free berry cider produced by McCashin’s Brewery in Stoke, Nelson, has claimed the Supreme Cider Award in a country that’s been making cider for over 2000 years.

The Rockdale Three Berry Cider was one of six McCashin’s Brewery products to gain recognition at this month’s Dublin Craft Beer Cup in Ireland, taking out a gold medal and the Supreme Cider Award.

Market representative Scott McCashin said the Supreme Award was a tremendous accolade to receive as the competition attracted entries from all around the world, and it validated the effort that McCashin’s had put into its cider production.

“Unlike most ciders on the market, we don’t use sugar,” he says.

“The Three Berry Cider came out of a lot of trials. It was made using a blend of local boysenberries, raspberries and blackcurrants. Finding the right balance was a challenge.”

McCashin’s also won a silver medal for its Rochdale Ginger Lime Cider and a bronze for its Rochdale Pear Cider. Its beer didn’t go unnoticed either - the Stoke Bomber Bohemian Ale, Stoke Bomber Oatmeal Stout and Stoke Dark all received silver medals.

The awards were judged by an international panel of experts, headed by Dr Inge Russell who edits the Journal of the Institute of Brewing. Dr Russell says the cup, now in its third year, is becoming a must for craft brewers to enter due to the impartiality of the competition and the accolades that winners receive from the international brewing industry. This is the first year that the Cup has featured a Supreme Cider Award.

Cider-making is believed to date back at least 2000 years, if not further, in Ireland where the industry was once supported and encouraged with preferential tax treatment.

While New Zealand’s cider-making history isn’t quite so rich, Rochdale Cider has long been a prominent player. Rochdale started at the McCashin’s brewery site in Stoke in the 1930s when there were at least four other cideries operating in the area. By the late 1970s Rochdale Cider was the only cidery still operating in New Zealand. It was purchased in 1980 by Terry and Bev McCashin and they continued to make Rochdale Cider when they started McCashin’s Brewery.

Rochdale stopped being made in 1999 and was re-started in 2009 by the second generation of McCashin brewers. The reincarnation has seen the brand pride itself on being sulphate, additive, preservative and sugar free.

“We are finding more and more consumers are demanding to know what’s in the products they are drinking,’’ Scott McCashin says.

“Although it’s not required by law, we’ve included a nutritional information panel on our ciders so consumers are better informed.”

In total, McCashin’s Brewery won 7 medals at the Dublin Craft Beer Cup, with another 10 medals awarded to other New Zealand entrants.


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