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Virginia cidery to partner with N.C. luxury hotel for special culinary feast

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North Carolina and Virginia are coming together this month for a succulent culinary pairing. The five-star award-winning restaurant, Herons, located at The Umstead Hotel and Spa in Cary, N.C. is hosting a special Foggy Ridge Cider dinner on Apr. 17, 2014.

Foggy Ridge Cider, based in Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains, aims to revive the artisan cider making tradition using modern production methods. Foggy Ridge Cider harvests ripe apples from their three orchards and crafts small batches of carefully selected cider blends. Over 30 American, English and French apple varieties—ugly and hard to grow but full of the tannin, acid and aroma needed for fine cider—are blended to create a traditional hard cider.

Winner of Cooking Light’s 2012 Artisanal Taste Test Award, Foggy Ridge Cider is the brainchild of cidermaker Diane Flynt, hailed for her focus on quality fruit over manipulation. Involved in all aspects of the orchard, from grafting and pruning to picking and blending, Flynt’s products are known for their uncommon depth and balance.

The good acidity and lower alcohol content of her craft blends make them a natural complement to Executive Chef Scott Crawford’s signature progressive American style of cuisine.

"We’re thrilled to collaborate with Chef Crawford and his talented team for a cider themed menu at Heron’s. Cider is a food friendly beverage and I know Chef’s dishes will surprise and delight," remarked Flynt.

The special dinner highlights Foggy Ridge Cider alongside a menu featuring locally sourced ingredients from the region’s outstanding purveyors:

Border Springs Lamb Carpaccio
Rappahannock River Oysters, Basil-Mustard
Foggy Ridge Sweet Stayman Cocktail

First Course
Carolina Mountain Trout
Blue Crab, Fish Skin Crackling, Fennel Broth
Foggy Ridge Serious Cider

Second Course
Smoked Veal Sweet Breads
Hickory Barbecue, Charred Ramps, Fava Beans
Foggy Ridge First Fruit Cider

Main Course
Heritage Farms Pork
Tenderloin, Rillettes, Trotter, Chicharrones
Foggy Ridge Handmade

Earl Grey Tea Cake
Roasted Apricots, Linzer, Warm Honey Caramel
Foggy Ridge Pippin Gold Apple Port

Reservations for the dinner cost $85 per person excluding tax and tip. A reception is at 6:30 p.m. followed by a four-course dinner with cider pairings at 7 p.m. Call (919) 447-4000 for reservations.

About Herons

With visionary executive chef Scott Crawford and chef de cuisine John Childers at the helm, Herons has earned national notice for its progressive approach to regional American cuisine and service that is relaxed and impeccable. A recipient of Forbes’ Five-Star rating and AAA’s Five Diamond award, Herons has been named one of the “101 Best Places to Eat in the World” by Newsweek and Restaurant of the Year by Raleigh’s News & Observer. It has been recognized in publications ranging from Condé Nast Traveler and Travel + Leisure to Southern Living and Food & Wine. Herons is located at The Umstead Hotel and Spa and is open for breakfast and lunch daily, dinner Monday through Saturday, and weekend brunch.

About The Umstead Hotel and Spa
The Umstead Hotel and Spa is a singular, sophisticated triumph in North Carolina’s northeastern Piedmont region, an area rich in beauty and rooted in innovation. The state’s most highly rated hotel, it boasts stunning interiors punctuated with privately curated fine art, 150 spacious guest rooms and suites, world-class cuisine, a stimulating spa, gracious staff, and a serene woodland setting. The Umstead is a recipient of both the AAA Five Diamond award and Forbes Five Star rating.

Located in Cary, North Carolina, The Umstead is just minutes from the Raleigh-Durham International Airport and Research Triangle Park, and within a short drive of Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill. For more information, visit

Foggy Ridge Cider

1328 Pineview Road
Dugspur, VA 24325
Open Friday 12 to 5, Saturday 11 to 5, Sunday 12 to 5 March 30 through December 15.