The American Cider Association just announced that Diane Flynt, nothing short of a cider legend, will be the Keynote Speaker for CiderCon® 2022, which is taking place in Richmond, Virginia, from February 2 to 4, 2022. This award-winning cidermaker Diane Flynt will give a presentation that will highlight the history and legacy of Southern apples and cider, and look at the ways the past can help provide guidance for a sustainable future for the American cider industry.
Many in the industry have revered Flynt for decades. When she founded Foggy Ridge Cider in Dugspur, Virginia, it was the first licensed cidery in the South. She planted many cider apples, including Southern varieties, and Foggy Ridge soon gained a national reputation for its beautiful cider. With hardcore cider fans and mainstream media outlets, like Gourmet, Saveur and Martha Stewart Living magazines, Flynt’s ciders made their mark. Food & Wine magazine named Foggy Ridge a “Small Batch Superstar” in 2010, and the cidery received many “best of” awards, including a top rating from the New York Times for its Serious Cider blend. In 2015 and 2016, Flynt was nominated for the James Beard Award for Outstanding Beverage Professional, and was a finalist for this award in 2017 and 2018. Although Foggy Ridge closed its doors in 2017, Flynt is still an outspoken advocate of cider, farming and food culture in national and regional forums.
“We are thrilled to have Diane Flynt joining us in Richmond at CiderCon 2022 as our keynote speaker,” says American Cider Association Executive Director Michelle McGrath. “Her wealth of knowledge and experience in the cider industry is impressive, and I know that attendees will walk away from her talk with new inspiration for ways to move forward sustainably in their own cider businesses.”
This is just one of the countless reasons why CiderCon 2022 is going to be so epic. In 2021, the Con was all online (quite a feat!), but CiderCon 2022, presented by premier ACA sponsor, FruitSmart, is back as an in-person event in a major way. Numerous sessions, an extensive trade show, several super-cool regional tours and various local cider events are all currently in the works. Also, Richmond is a vibrant, exciting city to explore, and the area all around it is rich with the history of Southern cider.
Anne Shelton of Albemarle Ciderworks and the Virginia Cider Association President comments, “The Virginia Cider Association is pleased to welcome CiderCon to the Commonwealth of Virginia. VCA members have been working hard to make CiderCon 2022 a memorable experience for cider producers and cider enthusiasts, both from the US and abroad.”
The ACA will be forming a COVID-safety plan for CiderCon 2022 to ensure that all attendees can participate with as little risk as possible. Both CDC and Virginia guidelines will be considered. The plan will be announced when ticket sales launch later this month!
- Photo: Aura Marzouk