Third cidery planned for Central Virginia

If you've recently taken the tour at Monticello, you've learned that it was hard cider– not beer, wine, or water– that was most likely accompanying Mr. Jefferson's meals. Back in 2009, it was the Albemarle CiderWorks grabbing headlines with a governor's visit. Then, this past October, a former cattle auction barn at the sprawling Castle Hill estate in Keswick horse country that threw open its doors to the public with a two-level, fireplace-equipped tasting room. Now comes word from the Crozet Gazette that a Danville native hopes to open the area's third cidery by the end of the year, a place that will be called Bold Rock Cidery and located in Nellysford. Why, when Albemarle CiderWorks opened in 2008, it became just the second cidery in the state, but now it looks like there are four (the first is in the southwestern part of the state), with more on the way!

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This is a welcome development, and I hope that there are more to come.

It makes sense for two reasons:

1. As the wine industry continues to grow, there are lots of folks with skills in applying yeast to fruit under controlled conditions, and marketing the result.

2. Virginia apples (many of them) KICK ASS.

I can't wait!

Virginia cider so far seems to have the same problem as Virginia wine. It's far more expensive and not nearly as good as the foreign imports. Competition should make things better for the consumer, but since these operations seem to want to focus on the day tripping market and have spent a lot of money on fancy tasting rooms there is only so low their prices can go. I'm hoping the next venture is in an industrial park and they spend their money on making a better product rather than a pretty show of it.

saywha? Try Castle Hill Cider. It is better than any cider in the world.