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HARD PRESSED

Each fall, Shacksbury’s cider makers forage for the feral, wild or otherwise forgotten fruit of rural Vermont. These are apple trees hiding in plain sight—along narrow country roads or in overgrown orchards. Many predate Prohibition. They were planted by early settlers, or sprung up as chance seedlings along the road. And hidden in those gnarled boughs is a great diversity of apples—sweet or sour, tannic or tart, each one unlike the one before. The right apples, once found, make for dry, complex hard cider, not unlike the ciders early settlers drank to slake their thirst. Shacksbury hunts for these rare gems—scouting and foraging, harvesting and pressing. Shacksbury’s cider makers also graft their favorite varieties into a “Lost Apple” orchard, saving these unique apples from obscurity. It’s our privilege to share the Shacksbury story with media across the U.S., helping the young cider makers reach new markets.

“If the cloying sweetness of most of the mass produced ciders on the market right now have turned you away from this historic beverage, a taste of Farmhouse Cider from Shacksbury might bring you back around. … [I]t’s time to back away from that pumpkin beer and reach for this memorable hard cider.”
—Uncrate

“For their Lost Apple Project, David Dolginow and Colin Davis hunt down apple trees planted by colonial settlers in private and public spaces across [Vermont]. Their aim is t he fruit that makes the best cider and graft cuttings from those trees to propagate, with the goal of saving worthy heirlooms from extinction.”
—Food & Wine