Diane Flynt, Heirloom Apple Grower and Expert Cider-Maker
Name: Diane Flynt
Occupation: President and cider-maker at Foggy Ridge Cider
Location: Virginia Blue Ridge Mountains
Background: Diane grows heirloom apples and makes hard cider. Foggy Ridge Cider’s products have been recognized in state and national competitions, including Gold Medals in the International Eastern Wine Competition and the National Women’s Wine Competition. Foggy Ridge Cider has been profiled in Gourmet, Saveur, Bon Appetit, Esquire, Imbibe, and Garden & Gun magazines. The September 2010 issue of Food & Wine profiled cider-maker Diane Flynt as a “Small Batch Superstar” in their article on “Tastemakers of the South.” And in 2012, Foggy Ridge Cider received an American Treasures award from Washington, DC-based MADE: In America.
Located in Southwest Virginia near Galax, Va., Foggy Ridge Cider grows over 30 varieties of heirloom apples. Old-fashioned varieties such as ‘Ashmead’s Kernel,’ ‘Newtown Pippin’ and ‘Hewe’s Crabapple’ are blended with classic English cider apples such as ‘Dabinett’ and ‘Tremlett’s Bitter’ to create four sparkling ciders and two dessert cider blends of hard cider and apple brandy. Planted in 1998, the orchard includes apples chosen for the acid, tannin and sugar needed for hard cider making.
Diane Flynt is has played a leadership role in promoting Virginia wine and is active in national cider initiatives. She is a member of the governor-appointed Virginia Wine Board and speaks on cider, and cider and food pairings in national and regional forums. Foggy Ridge Cider was founded in 2004 as the first Virginia farm winery to produce only hard cider. Each year Foggy Ridge Cider has sold its complete production, which in 2013 will be 3000 cases.
About Foggy Ridge Ciders: Foggy Ridge Cider’s Serious Cider is dry, like a Brut Champagne, with astringency from ugly and hard-to-grow cider apples. First Fruit is a crisp fruit forward cider made with Thomas Jefferson’s favorite cider apple, the ‘Hewe’s Crab.’ And Sweet Stayman is similar to a dry Riesling and ideal with spicy dishes. Foggy Ridge Handmade, a new selection, is made from 100 percent ‘Newton Pippin’ apples grown “on the mountain.” Foggy Ridge also crafts two dessert ciders, Pippin Gold and Pippin Black, both blends of hard cider and Virginia-made apple brandy.
More Places to Find Diane and Foggy Ridge on the Web:
On the Our Story page of the Foggy Ridge website
The Foggy Ridge Cider Facebook page
On Twitter @FoggyRidgeCider
In this Edible Radio interview with Diane