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Publisher's Summary

“Not just a thorough guide to the history of apples and cider in this country but also an inspiring survey of the orchardists and cidermakers devoting their lives to sustainable agriculture through apples.” (Alice Waters)

“Pucci and Cavallo are thorough and enthusiastic chroniclers, who celebrate cider’s pomologists and pioneers with infectious curiosity and passion.” (Bianca Bosker, New York Times best-selling author of Cork Dork)

Cider today runs the gamut from sweet to dry, smooth to funky, made from apples and sometimes joined by other fruits - and even hopped like beer. In American Cider, aficionados Dan Pucci and Craig Cavallo give a new wave of consumers the tools to taste, talk about, and choose their ciders, along with stories of the many local heroes saving apple culture and producing new varieties. Like wine made from well-known grapes, ciders differ based on the apples they’re made from and where and how those apples were grown. Combining the tasting tools of wine and beer, the authors illuminate the possibilities of this light, flavorful, naturally gluten-free beverage.

And cider is more than just its taste - it’s also historic, as the nation’s first popular alcoholic beverage, made from apples brought across the Atlantic from England. Pucci and Cavallo use a region-by-region approach to illustrate how cider and the apples that make it came to be, from the well-known tale of Johnny Appleseed - which isn’t quite what we thought - to the more surprising effects of industrial development and government policies that benefited white men. American Cider is a guide to enjoying cider, but even more so, it is a guide to being part of a community of consumers, farmers, and fermenters making the nation’s oldest beverage its newest must-try drink.

©2021 Dan Pucci (P)2021 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

“For years, American craft cider has been one of the most dynamic players on the contemporary beverage scene, a delicious and distinctive drink seemingly appearing from nowhere, but as Dan Pucci and Craig Cavallo show, cider and America have been deeply entwined for more than four hundred years. Until now, we’ve had only glimpses of this story, but American Cider puts it all together, weaving history, botany, anthropology, and insight into the first comprehensive account of what American cider is and how it got that way. This is an essential volume for anyone wishing to navigate the extraordinarily diverse landscape of contemporary cider, but it is much more than that. By tracing the human and natural forces at work over four centuries, Pucci and Cavallo provide a new context for understanding how America has shaped cider - and, in so doing, a new way for understanding America.” (Rowan Jacobsen, author of Apples of Uncommon Character and A Geography of Oysters)

“Pucci and Cavallo survey the American cider landscape with a compass both diplomatic and passionate. It’s a far-reaching scene, dotted with tidbits and profound with consequence, but our guides are skilled artisans; the painting is both intimate with detail and bucolic in its sum.” (Andy Brennan, cidermaker, apple grower, and author of Uncultivated)

“Whenever I’ve had questions about cider, Dan Pucci has long been my first stop for expertise. Now he can be everyone’s go-to expert, thanks to this thorough, comprehensive guide on ciders and the apples used to make them." (Kara Newman, author of Cocktails with a Twist and spirits editor, Wine Enthusiast magazine)

American Cider is a deeply researched road map to modern cider's revival, reminding readers why well-made cider should always be the apple of drinkers’ eyes. All too often, cider is seen as the sugary stuff that's sold by the juice box. Cider evangelists Pucci and Cavallo take readers on a centuries-spanning journey from colonial America's historic orchards to today's visionary makers who are spearheading the juiced-up cider revival. After reading American Cider, you'll never eye an apple the same way again.” (Joshua M. Bernstein, author of The Complete Beer Course and Drink Better Beer)

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