Cider-makers seek flavor ofold wild apple

With a vigorous shake of a tree branch, small wild apples rain down onto a plastic tarp at an old farmstead in Vermont.

David Dolginow, co-founder of Shacksbury Cider, and a colleague then collect the yellow-skinned fruit in milk crates. In their quest for the best apples to make hard cider, they’ve hunted for heritage wild apples on mountain roadsides, in the thickets of old pastures, and in backyards through its Lost Apple Project.

“In the search for the pinot noir of apples, we’ll go far and wide,” Dolginow said.

As the craft cider industry continues its resurgence and not enough commercial cider apples available, some cider-makers are foraging old wild apples that have links to the country’s early cider making past.

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