Aug 29, 2020
I’m Jonny Garrett, and you’re listening to the Good Beer Hunting podcast.
My guest today is Felix Nash, founder of the Fine Cider Co, a distribution company focusing on small-batch, natural ciders.
When you first meet Nash, he seems an unlikely fit for the fast, hard sell nature of alcohol distribution. But as you’ll likely hear during the podcast, there’s a steely grit and relentless positivity about him—both as important in distro as the ability to upsell or talk numbers.
His background sounds more like that of a producer—a fine arts degree, a eureka moment, a series of supper clubs that he used to try and convert his friends. But living in London meant only one route was open to him, and the remarkable trust placed in him by Tom Oliver of Oliver’s Cider has sent him on a journey he would freely admit is unlikely.
We talk about the start of the company, his relationship with some of the best cider makers in the world, his focus on fine dining customers, and of course the impact that COVID-19 has had on all of them. Cider was perhaps on the verge of having a moment in the U.K., of finding its own space after years of being an interesting aside to the worlds of craft beer and natural wine. Hereford, in particular, has gained a reputation for making exception natural ciders and was seeing plenty of growth and innovation in the months leading up to the outbreak. It would be easy to assume that momentum has gone with most of Nash’s customers closing for the summer, but he has found a way to make it work, keeping people talking and most importantly going direct to sell through some of his stock in time for this year’s vintage.
Nash gives some fascinating insights into a small industry with huge potential, and a young company at the start of a long journey—how inspiration is more important than education, how he hopes cider can learn from the mistakes of craft beer, and what the future of cider looks like post-COVID-19.
This is Felix Nash of the Fine Cider Co. Listen in.