Hard cider and mead have come (back) to Rappahannock County in the form of Hinson Ford Cider & Mead, which recently opened in Amissville at 379 Hinson Ford Road.
Rappahannock has a long and storied history of fine hard ciders crafted from fine apples, and now both have joined forces, says Hinson Ford Meadmaker Dennis Kelly.
He says while craft beer growth has leveled off in recent years, and mass-market beers have seen a decline in market share, hard cider has come back from the brink of extinction in the United States. According to the meadmaker, meads are currently the fastest growing segment of the alcoholic beverage market in the U.S.
Hinson Ford currently offers two hard ciders and three meads on draft, all dry and sparkling. They also have a still cider and a still semi-sweet mead. “If you have had mead before, forget what you know; if you haven't had mead before, leave your expectations at the door . . . they're like nothing you've tasted.”