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As interest in this centuries-old craft grows and cideries continue to emerge across the country, we are proud to give cider a category all its own. With the increased use of dry-farmed fruit and heirloom varieties, the beauty of the apple (and the pear) find expression in both our Apple-Centric and Flavored & Fortified subcategories.


The Good Food Awards rely on the expertise of the cider community to create the tasting, determine judges and set standards for the category. Read on to learn who has been integral to building the category, as well as what the cider standard are and who will be judging this year.



Mike Reis

Owner at Redfield Cider Bar & Bottle Shop – Oakland, CA

Mike Reis is an Advanced Cicerone and a Berkeley-based fermentation obsessive on a mission to stir up excitement and interest around better beverages everywhere. He is currently working to open Redfield Cider Bar & Bottle Shop with his partner, Olivia Maki, in Oakland. Previously, he’s been a contributor to Serious Eats, Operations Manager for specialty beer and cider distributor Lime Ventures and co-director of the beverage programs for the Monk’s Kettle and Abbot’s Cellar restaurants in San Francisco. This is Mike’s fifth year overseeing the Good Food Awards’ Cider category.

Olivia Maki

Owner at Redfield Cider Bar & Bottle Shop – Oakland, CA

In her career building community around food and agriculture, Olivia has organized educational experiences at 18 Reasons and handled marketing and communications for the Farmers Guild and FarmsReach. Olivia is the marketing manager for Bio-Logical Capital, a land investment and conservation company, and acted as an advisor for Kitchen Table Advisors and Real Food Real Stories. She has farmed in CA and VT and worked with apple growers for the past 8 years. She enjoys blogging for the Coast Kitchen and fermenting apples in her spare time. Her writings have been published in Civil Eats and Left Coast Magazine. She and her partner Mike Reis are opening Redfield Cider Bar & Bottle Shop in Oakland, California toward the end of 2018.

Committee Members

John Lee, Wine Director & Finance Manager, Woods Beer Company
Ashley Patino, Bread Baker, Tartine Bakery
Alex Powar, Wine & Spirits Sales, T. Edward Wines


In order to be eligible for a Good Food Award, cider entries must meet the following standards:

  • Made in the USA or US territories.
  • Made with ingredients that are grown or produced with practices that promote resource conservation and minimize synthetic inputs, including herbicides, pesticides, fungicides or fertilizers
  • Made with fruit and other ingredients that are grown locally and with respect to seasonality as a top priority.
  • Free of artificial ingredients, including colors, flavors and preservatives.
  • Does not use fruit juice concentrates as a primary source of fermentable sugar (may not exceed 25%).
  • Made by a producer that demonstrates a commitment to relationships with suppliers and customers in order to support and promote sustainability.
  • Made by a crafter that is an upstanding member of the good food community, oriented toward growing their business in harmony with a better food system.


Additionally, cider entries must fit within one of the following subcategories:

  • Unadulterated Ciders: Ciders made to showcase everything the apple can do when fermented, without the addition of prominent flavoring agents. Chaptalized ciders can be included here, but those made with sugars that have a significant impact on flavor should be entered into the Spiced & Hopped category.
  • Unadulterated Perry: Perries made to showcase everything the pear can do when fermented, without the addition of prominent flavoring agents. Apple-based ciders with added pear should be entered into the Fruited category.
  • Wood-Aged: Ciders and perries aged or fermented in barrels or on wood to take on significant barrel/wood character or the flavor of the barrel’s previous contents as a key flavor component. Please specify the barrel/wood type with your submission.
  • Fruited: Ciders and perries made with added non-apple/pear fruits. Apple-based ciders with added pear and pear-based drinks with added apples should also be entered here.
  • Spiced, Hopped & Other Flavored: Ciders and perries made with spices, hops, herbs, or sugars with significant flavor contributions (such as maple syrup or honey).
  • Fortified & Ice Ciders: Ciders and perries fortified with spirits, pommeaus, and ice ciders.

Past Judges

Josha Baker

Bar Manager & Buyer, Cask Taproom

Morgan Maki

Director of Food Ecosystems, Bio-Logical Capital

Bradley Yarger

Senior Sales Manager, Half Pint Ciders

Jake Mann

Owner/Manager, Five Mile Orchards

Nick Morse

Cider Professional

Urmila Ramakrishnan

Features Producer, SF Chronicle

Emily Ritchie

Director, Northwest Cider Association

Jenn Smith

Executive Director, New York Cider Association

Tracy Smith

Owner, The Cider Junction

Ian Williamson

Wine + Cider Sales Representative, Revel Wine