In 1904 William John Thatcher first began making cider on the family farm in Sandford to use as part of his farm-workers' wages. Now more than one hundred years later, Thatchers has developed into one of Britain’s leading producers, with bottled and draught ciders found not only in pubs up and down the country, but on supermarket shelves too.
Thatchers is still a family firm. In May 2004, all four generations of the Thatcher family gathered at the family home, Myrtle Farm, in Sandford, Somerset to celebrate a century of cider making.
- Cheddar Valley - Cloudy & Red, Non-sparkling 6%
Where does the colour come from? It cannot be natural. Here is a definite case for clear labelling of ingredients so the drinker can use their own judgement as to whether to drink something so artificial-looking. The current version of C.H. is not a patch on the original which at least had bite and flavour instead of just a strange colour as it's selling point...
- Traditional - Cloudy, 1904 Recipe, Non-sparkling 6%
Cloudy still medium-dry cider.
- Old Rascal Scrumpy - Clear, Sparkling 6%
Filtered? Industrial cider?
- Heritage - Cloudy, Non/Lightly-sparkling 4.9%
Pretty much a medium version of Traditional.
- Thatchers Mendip Magic - Clear, Slightly-sparkling 6.0%
Somewhat rare clear medium cider found only in select pubs in the Mendip area.
- Gold - Clear, Sparkling 4.8%
Filtered, Industrial cider.
- Ashton Press 4.8% - Made for the Long Ashton Cider Co, a wholly owned subsidiary of Butcombe Brewery. A keg cider made from English apples, and conditioned in oak vats.
- Thatchers Coxs - Sweet 5.3%
- Thatchers Katy - Dry, Sparkling 7.4%
- Thatchers Redstreak - Mellow 7.4%
- Thatchers Spartan - Invigorating (?) 5.2%
- Christon - Single Orchard Cider 7.4%
- Oak Matured - Aged in Rum Barrels 5.2%
- Vintage - Made from the best Somerset apples of one years crop (750ml) 7.4%
- Katy Rose - Katy with blush 5.4%
- Perry - Made from Conference Pears (750ml) 7.4%
As Conference is a dessert pear, do not expect any depth of flavour or interest on the palate. This is quite bland, though innocuous, stuff. People who remember 'Babycham' may find something similar to please them here.
- Mendip Scrumpy - Oak Conditioned & Hazy (2 Litre) 6%
- Old Rascal - Farmhouse Cider & Clear (2 Litre) 6%
- Scrumpy Jug - Somerset Draught from the barrel & clear. dry, medium or sweet (2.5 Litre) 6%
Although Mole's Black Rat was at one time made at their brewery in Wiltshire, it is now made under licence by Thatchers. The taste has likewise changed to become "Thatchers style" if there is such a thing? Those who remember the original non-Thatchers Cheddar Valley may appreciate where I'm coming from... Interestingly, a local pub is due to have a mini beer festival soon and the only cider on is Black Rat which is described as a "...premium blend cider..." (what's that then?) and more alarmingly: "Produced traditionally in a family Somerset cider farmhouse." I would guess that this sort of marketing hyperbole was written and supplied by Thatchers themselves.
- Address: Thatchers Cider Company Ltd, Myrtle Farm, Sandford, Somerset, BS25 5RA.
- Tel: (01934) 822862.