The World’s Biggest Cider Tasting will take place on May 2 via Instagram, with the aim of connecting cider fans and producers during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The Ciderologist, Gabe Cook, who is hosting the event, told DRN: The primary motivation for creating the World’s Biggest Cider Tasting was to give a platform for cider lovers to stay connected during these challenging times. 

“Everyone is missing social contact, so the large number of online talks and tastes that are happening are all trying to help ease that a little bit. 

“This event will hopefully also showcase just how diverse cider is, and that cider is made all over the world, which many people may not realise. Dare I say, it might be rather a lot of fun, too!!”

The event will take place via Cook’s Instagram channel (@ciderologist) at 8pm UK time. 

Cook said: “It’s a simple premise. Tune in at 8pm (GMT+1) and make sure you are armed with a favourite cider. I will lead all the viewers of the broadcast through a giant global ‘cheers!’ and then we will ‘drop in’ and have a live chat with cidermakers from all over the world.”

Confirmed cidermakers taking part in the event include Griffin Cider in Buenos Aires, Argentina; Bepas Sydra in Sao Paulo, Brazil; Angry Orchard, New York, US; Leftfield Cider, British Columbia, Canada; and Willie Smith’s, Tasmania, Australia, with many more across Europe and beyond expected to join. 

Reflecting on the UK’s cider market at present Cook confirmed that online sales are rocketing and while this is a new proposition for many retailers and cidermakers, it is proving “a great success”. 

He said: “What will be interesting to see when lockdown restrictions ease, is whether there is a greater demand from retailers to stock brands that they didn’t previously. Route to market is one of the greatest challenges for smaller producers, with retailers often citing their price point as being too high.  

“Hopefully this challenging time will demonstrate that consumers are willing to spend more for something local and/or something made with extra skill.”