Cider House Rules, Again

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At the time of the American Revolution, one out of every ten farms in
New England had a cider mill.  Hard cider was practically a national
drink. But a shift to urban lifestyles and the pressure of the
temperance movement forced this farmhouse beverage out of favor. Now
it’s coming back, in a big way. Last year, US sales were up 20 percent.
One local cidermaker, The Vermont Hard Cider Company, controls more than
half of the market. And other local cidermakers are starting to see
remarkable success. We explore the cider revival with Ben Watson, author
of “Cider Hard and Sweet: History, Traditions & Making Your Own”
and we learn about the craft from the cidermakers at Farnum Hill Cider
in Lebanon, New Hampshire, Citizen Cider in Colchester, and Whetstone
in Marlboro.

Are you a cider aficionado? Just starting
to explore the beverage? Share your local favorites with us below or on
Vermont Edition’s Facebook page.

Also in the program, Vermont’s
"Solar City." When Green Mountain Power announced plans to merge with
Central Vermont Public Service, GMP President Mary Powell promised
Rutland a few concessions. With GMP’s help, Rutland would become the
solar capital of Vermont. Critics rolled their eyes, but VPR’s Nina Keck
reports that many in Rutland hope investments in solar may jump start
the city’s economy.

And, the legacy of the Estey Organ Company.
In the 19th and early 20th centuries, Brattleboro was home to the
world’s largest maker of organs for churches, homes and public
buildings. The company is long gone now, but Brattleboro’s Estey Organ
Museum continues to celebrate Estey’s role in setting an international
standard for tuning musical instruments.

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