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Sunday, 29 July 2018

The Ultimate Cider Tasting Experience | The Stable Southampton

When Guildhall Square was revamped back in 2010, the area of the city was given a complete new lease of life, and The Stable became an established restaurant in Southampton. Known as the location for pizza, pies and cider, I'm not sure how I'd gotten to this point without visiting - I mean pizza and cider, what more could you want? So I jumped at the opportunity to visit The Stable with the Southampton Bloggers for an afternoon of cider tasting and delicious food.

Now, I do enjoy a good cider, especially during the summer months. I've tried a few different ones, and definitely know what I think a good cider was, so I was looking forward to seeing what The Stable had for me to try. The Stable offer Cider Tasting Experiences, led by one of The Stable's Cider Masters, who will fill you in on all the different types of cider available. I, for one, had no idea that there were so many different types of cider. Still, sparkling, best served at room temperature, best served chilled. The Stable offer three different Cider Tasting Experiences, ranging from £15 per person for a 60 minute session, to £30 per head for a 150 minute session. It was this 150 minute Ultimate Cider Tasting Experience that we were treated to, which included ten different types of cider to try, as well as a selection of food.

As part of our Cider Tasting Experience, our lovely Cider Master Ellie introduced us to ten different ciders (some delicious, some not so much). She explained the difference between the different types of ciders, and introduced us to a variety of cider specific terms like tannins, acidity and blend. After trying all the different ciders, I came to the conclusion that my preference lie with the sparkling, chilled ciders. As well as trying all the different samples, I also bought a couple of the flavoured ciders on offer from the brand Firkin Cider Co. I'm a big fan of a Strawberry and Lime Kopparberg (even if some would say this isn't a real cider...), and I loved trying the Strawberry and Rhubarb and the Coconut and Raspberry flavours. They were delicious - I think I may have found a new favourite.

As well as the cider tasting, we were also treated to a selection of The Stable's delicious food. At the beginning of the afternoon, the tables were filled with Stix and Dips and the Charcuterie and Cheese Board. I have never seen so many happy faces than those of the blogging gals I was with - we were already in food heaven. Halfway through our Cider Tasting Experience, it was time for pizza. Now this is something, along with cider and pies, that The Stable are well-known for. Handmade with their own tomato sauce and sourdough bases, there are a variety of different toppings you can choose from, including an extensive vegan menu. When I spotted the Four Cheese Special, I knew I had to have it. It was tasty, although very rich, especially the blue cheese part - perhaps one to share with your pizza buddy. As if all this yummy food wasn't enough, we were then transported to dessert heaven when the brownies arrived. I'd heard amazing things from Alice about these brownies, and couldn't wait to give them a try for myself. They were really tasty, chocolatey and gooey, but never got to that overly rich, "I've eaten too much" level. I'd go back just for those. Again, these were present on the vegan menu as well, and they got rave reviews too. You can find the menu for the Southampton restaurant here.

Overall, I had a really fun, educational (?) afternoon with a fab group of girlies. Who knew you could learn so much from an afternoon's cider tasting. I'd thoroughly recommend it if you're partial to a cider or two.

Do you like cider? What's your favourite?

Love Lexie

* This experience was complimentary in return for a review. All views are honest and my own.

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