By Chris Heagney | Photos by Pat Barcas
On Saturday, October 13, Salvage Station will host the sixth annual CiderFest NC. Organized by Cari Barcas of the Green Built Alliance, the festival is the biggest fundraiser of the year for the nonprofit. The Green Built Alliance has a 16-year history of advancing sustainability in the built environment through community education, measurable standards and regional action.
Cider has enjoyed a renaissance in the American craft beverage scene. The trope that hard cider is a one-dimensional, sugary drink akin to Smirnoff Ice has gradually worn off thanks to small producers, bars that offer quality cider options and events like CiderFest NC. Because of this craft explosion in cidermaking, you can expect a wide range of flavors at the festival. Fruit-forward ciders will be on offer alongside dry farmhouse-style ciders and hopped ciders. Whether you’re an experienced cider drinker or are new to the world of cider, this event is a great opportunity to explore.
The cideries to be featured include national brands as well as local boutique cidermakers such as Naughty Penguin and Botanist & Barrel. Every year, CiderFest NC has continued to expand its selection. “Last year’s festival connected a record-setting 1,500 people with 18 cider, mead and apple wine makers, offering nearly 80 different varieties of cider and mead,” says Barcas. This upcoming CiderFest may prove to be the most ambitious event yet. “In addition to tasting cider and mead, guests can enjoy bites of artisanal food including local cheeses, baked goods, caramels and ice cream,” says Barcas. “The event is also expanding this year to include a variety of food trucks on site.”
A family-friendly festival, CiderFest NC will also offer opportunities for children to enjoy themselves and engage in some hands-on learning. The interactive kids zone will feature green-living activities and eco-friendly crafts. If adults are looking for some education between sips of cider, there will be mini-workshops and short film screenings covering sustainability and green building. There’s a lot to fit in at one of the largest cider gatherings in the state. Whether it’s simply cider you’re after, or if you’re looking to learn more about greener living, this will be a vibrant and engaging event. Be sure to get your tickets early because the festival is expected to sell out yet again.
The Salvage Station is located at 466 Riverside Drive in Asheville. To purchase tickets to CiderFest NC, visit ciderfestnc.com. For more information about the Green Built Alliance, visit greenbuilt.org.