Drinking fresh, or "sweet", cider in the fall is an American tradition. And recent years have seen the resurgence of "hard" (alcoholic) cider -- once the drink of choice in England and the Americas -- after decades of obscurity. Now this delightful, fizzy drink is turning up again in American farmer''s markets and in bars and restaurants as a refreshing alternative to handcrafted beer. What''s more, this elegantly simple beverage is so easy to make that producing good homemade cider, both hard and sweet, is well within the reach of the enthusiast.
In Cider, Hard and Sweet, Ben Watson explores the cultural and historical roots of cider. He introduces us to the different styles of cider -- including draft, farmhouse, French, New England, and sparkling, as well as apple wine, applejack, and cider vinegar -- and gives complete instructions on how to make them at home with a minimum of time and equipment. In addition, there are tips on evaluating homemade ciders, instructions for hosting a cider tasting, and recipes for cooking and baking with cider. This book is sure to interest not only apple aficionados, but anyone who appreciates good food and drink and the cultural traditions that surround and inform them.