Plenty shines at 2023 Australian Cider Awards

27 Oct 2023

Cider Australia announced the winners of the 2023 Australian Cider Awards at a gala dinner in Melbourne last night.

Tasmanian producer Plenty Cider was awarded Best in Show with Apple + Blueberry along with the Best Specialty Cider and Most Successful Small Producer trophies.

The quality of entries this year left the judges impressed with a record 75% of all ciders entered receiving a medal, showing how hard the industry is working to eliminate technical faults, meet style expectations and test the boundaries with new and exciting products.

A field of 219 local and international entries from 62 producers was judged by a highly skilled and diverse panel of nine judges led by chair Briony Liebich of consultancy Flavour Logic. Guest judge Darlene Hayes from the United States added valuable insight on global trends.

Thirteen gold medals and nine trophies were awarded. The Dry New World Cider class was a standout class with three gold medals awarded.

2023 Trophy winners:

Best in Show: Plenty Cider with Apple + Blueberry (TAS)

Best New World Cider: Hillbilly Cider with Apple (NSW)

Best Traditional Cider: Simple Cider with Wild Heritage Blend (TAS)

Best Perry: Napoleone Cider with Napoleone Pear Cider (VIC)

Best Specialty Cider or Perry: Plenty Cider with Apple + Blueberry (TAS)

Best Intensified / Distilled Cider or Perry: Carmel Cider Company with Apple Brandy (WA)

Best International Cider or Perry: Peckham’s with Stoke Red (NZ)

Most Successful Small Producer: Plenty Cider (TAS)

Most Successful Larger Producer: Hillbilly Cider (NSW)

Cider Australia also honours individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to the Australian cider industry over a prolonged period of time through its Champion of the Industry Award. This Award was presented to Max Allen.

For a full list of award and medal winners visit: 

– Ends –

Media enquiries

Contact Cider Australia executive officer Jane Anderson on 0434 559 759 or or visit

About Cider Australia 

Cider Australia is an independent, not-for-profit organisation funded by cider businesses and sponsors, established in 2012. It aims to build a sustainable cider category by undertaking activities that improve the quality of ciders produced and marketed in Australia. The organisation represents the interests of the cider industry to policy makers, calling for regulations and policies that support a diverse and evolving cider industry, and runs the Australian Cider Awards and the national AusCider conference.

About the Awards

The Awards is the largest cider competition in Australia and is leading the standardisation and improvement of cider judging across Australia. The judging panel comprised:

  • Briony Liebich (Flavour Logic) (chair)
  • Darlene Hayes (Certified Pommelier™ educator and writer) (international guest judge)
  • Max Allen (wine and drinks writer)
  • Nyall Condon (Flying Brick Cider Co)
  • Adam D’Arcy (Plenty Cider)
  • Lindsy Greig (Certified Cicerone® The 5th Ingredient)
  • Rob Hall (Napoleone Cider Bar) (associate)
  • Emma Penny (Certified Cicerone® Stomping Ground Brewery) (associate)
  • Jenny Polack (Bacchus Academy)

Chair of judges – Briony Liebich

Briony is a sensory analyst and tasting coach. Growing up in a winemaking family gave Briony a good grounding in the booze industry and developed her appreciation for good drinks. After working in winery laboratories, Briony became a sensory analyst running wine and food research projects and training sensory panellists. She side-stepped into the beer world and led the sensory program at Lion’s West End Brewery for 10 years working with beer, cider and RTD’s. During that time, she gained valuable judging experience at beer and cider awards and became a Certified Cicerone ®. Since West End’s closure, Briony has revamped her Flavour Logic brand to help drive a quality focus and improve tasting skills within the alcoholic beverage industry. She is a qualified trainer, writes regularly for Beer and Brewer, and runs educational workshops for consumers, hospitality staff and industry professionals.

Guest international judge – Darlene Hayes

Darlene Hayes, dipWEST and Certified Pommelier™, is a writer and educator living in Sonoma County, California. She’s been fascinated by apples and cider since she and her husband built a house next to a 100+ year old apple orchard. Ever curious, she has since been doing research, historical and otherwise, on numerous apple varieties and the ciders made from them. For the last six years Darlene has been working with the American Cider Association on their Certified Cider Professionals program developing content to educate beverage professionals and enthusiasts alike on the breadth and depth of what cider has to offer. She is a well-respected international cider judge and the editor of the cider and apple-themed zine, Malus as well as writing about cider and apples for a variety of publications and at Her book, Cider Cocktails–Another Bite of the Apple, was the first book on the modern exploration of using cider in cocktails.

2023 Best in Class Winners

Class 1

Dry New World Cider

Bilpin Cider Co

Bilpin Archibald
High N Dry


Class 2

Medium New World


Hills Cider



Class 3

Medium Sweet New World Cider

Hillbilly Cider



Class 4

Sweet New World Cider

Hillbilly Cider

Sweet Julie


Class 5

New World MT Cider

Bradys Lookout Cider

Cuvee 13 – Cox Orange Pippin Blend


Class 6

Dry Traditional Cider


Wild Heritage Blend


Class 7

Medium Traditional


2022 Cornucopia


Class 8

Medium Sweet Traditional Cider

Daylesford Cider

Organic Kingston Black


Class 9

Sweet Traditional Cider


Cidre Rosé


Class 10

Traditional MT Cider

St Ronans Cider

Methode Traditionelle
Apple Cider


Class 11

Apple and Pear Blends

DV Cider

Pulp Friction


Class 21

Dry New World Perry


Twisted Sister Pear Cider


Class 22

Medium New World Perry

Napoleone Cider

Napoleone Pear Cider


Class 23

Medium Sweet New World Perry

Eddies Cider

Smooth Pear


Class 24

Sweet New World Perry

Frank’s Cider

Summer Pear


Class 25

New World MT Perry

St Ronans Cider

Methode Traditionelle Pear Cider


Class 26

Dry Traditional Perry

Hart’s Farm

Pear Cider


Class 27

Medium Traditional Perry


no entries


Class 28

Medium Sweet
Traditional Perry


no entries


Class 29

Sweet Traditional Perry


no entries


Class 30

Traditional MT Perry


no entries


Class 31

Experimental Cider or Perry

Carmel Cider

Apple Pie Moonshine


Class 31A

No-Low Alc Cider or Perry

Bilpin Cider Co

Bilpin Non Alc Apple & Ginger


Class 33

Cider or Perry with Fruit


Apple + Blueberry


Class 34

Lighter Strength Cider or Perry


Wild Red


Class 35

Cider or Perry with

DV Cider



Class 36

Wood Aged Cider or Perry

Willie Smith’s Tasmanian

Brandy Barrel Aged Apple Cider


Class 41

Ice Cider or Perry


no entries


Class 42


Carmel Cider



Class 43

Eau de Vie (Apple or Pear Spirit)

St Andrews Beach Brewery

Home Track Apple Vodka


Class 44

Aged Apple or Pear Spirit

Carmel Cider

Apple Brandy




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