Orchardist at Foggy Ridge Orchards | Dugspur, VA
Diane founded Foggy Ridge Cider in 1997 by planting one of the first 20th-century cider apple orchards in the South. Located at an elevation of 3,000 feet in the Virginia Blue Ridge Mountains, the Foggy Ridge orchards include more than 25 classic cider apple varieties, such as Dabinett, Tremlett’s Bitter and Ashmead’s Kernel, as well as American cider apples such as Harrison and Hewe’s Crabapple.
Since its first 2005 vintage, Foggy Ridge Cider has been recognized as producing high-quality, orchard-focused cider. By 2017, Foggy Ridge Cider was distributed in 15 states, producing more than 5,000 cases annually. Diane has received James Beard Award nominations for Outstanding Beverage Professional in 2015 and 2016, and was a finalist for this award in 2017 and 2018. Diane is active in national and state cider initiatives and has played a leading role in promoting Virginia beverages. She is a member of the governor-appointed Virginia Wine Board and a board member of the Southern Foodways Alliance. She speaks frequently on cider, farming and food culture in national and regional forums.
In early 2018, Diane retired the Foggy Ridge Cider brand and now focuses full time on growing cider apples for the Southern cider community and on supporting fine cider and orchard-focused cider in the national market.
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Diane is participating in the Sustainable Classroom on Friday, October 18.