Top award for North Devon cider producer.

A NORTH Devon cider producer has won a national award for its cloudy apple cider vinegar.

Ostlers Cider Mill, in Goodleigh, wet the appetites of judges at this year’s Great Taste Awards, dubbed the ‘Oscars’ of the food world.

The vinegar, which won a Taste of the West Award last year, was awarded a gold star following a judging process involving more than 400 judges and thousands of hours of blind tasting.

Becci Hartnoll, joint owner, said: “At Ostlers we know we have a great product, but when we heard that 10,000 other products had entered we were wondering if we would get any stars.

“Being a traditional and family-run business, we are delighted that our cider vinegar is now getting the recognition which it deserves.

“Our products are sold nationwide and also starting to be sold in Europe. We put our success down to the special blend of Devonshire apples and an old family recipe.”

Judges said the cider vinegar had a ‘great colour’ and a ‘good sharp twang up front and a long lasting apple finish’.

Out of almost 10,000 products entered into Great Taste 2013 just 125 have been awarded three-star.

They will now be re-judged by industry experts who will announce 50 Golden Fork trophy winners as well as a 2013 supreme champion on September 9.