Tomorrow The Cider Journal arrives at CiderCon in Chicago. And if the Interwebs are correct, I’ve learned that at just about the time I exit the steakhouse at which I am dining tomorrow, the temperature should hit somewhere in the neighborhood of 4 – 9 degrees F. The fact that I am not giving away my airplane ticket from SFO to O’Hare to anyone who is first to email me should indicate the high level of anticipation I possess for attending this annual gathering of America’s cidermaking community.
My reason for attending and the anticipation I feel comes down to certain opportunities: 1) The opportunity to learn WHY new and more established cideries were launched, 2) the opportunity to record cidermakers’ reactions to the current cider renaissance as well as understand where the cidermakers believe the marketplace is headed, and 3) the opportunity to discuss ideas for bringing artisan cider more into the mainstream.
Since May, when The Cider Journal launched, readership has continually increased, day after day and month after month. Readers are primarily those very interested in drinking cider, but also folks involved in the cider trade. Additionally, we are receiving more and more samples from cideries that want to see their ciders reviewed in the hope that a good review from The Cider Journal will provide them with one more tool for helping market and sell their cider. Finally, I have seen a continual increase in the number of invitations I’ve received for taking part in seminars and conferences in which cider is either the primarily or secondary focus.
The point is that not only are cidermakers seeing an increase in interest in their product, but so are those affiliate with hard cider like The Cider Journal.
CiderCon is really the only chance to gather the entire industry in a single room—so to speak. The four-day event, though filled with seminars, speeches and trade show, is also the best opportunity for cidermakers and the cider industry to “network” and to understand their industry from the perspective of their peers across the country.
With any luck, CiderCon will provide The Cider Journal and its readers with a number of interviews and insights with which to better understand why the cider industry is booming, what to expect down the road and why consumers should be excited about what’s happening now and in the future where hard cider is concerned.
Put another way, we could care less about 4 degrees F.