History of Cider
Hard cider made its debut in North America with the settlers who brought it from Europe, and by the 1700s it was consumed more than any other beverage. Adults and children alike drank up to thirty-four gallons of beer and cider annually. Aside from attributing their imbibing to unsafe water conditions, many people also believed it could cure a number of ailments, put pep in the step of the elderly, and by golly, it just made the world look lovely.
With the 1800s came the Temperance Movement and the Industrial Revolution, both of which gave our beloved cider a swift kick in the apples. The promise of high paying jobs lured folks away from their country homes and into the cities, where beer was far easier to obtain. The final nail in the coffin came in 1920 when the world heard a collective, anguished scream from America with the passing of Prohibition. That was the most heart breaking day of our lives, and we weren’t even born yet.
The 1940s saw the return and rise of apple orchards, and by the 1990s the popularity of small-batch craft brewers demanding high quality and substance soared. A movement was born, and hard cider went along for the ride. Although the first ciders on the market were primarily English and French influenced, the homegrown American Common style took root and is enjoying its time in the spotlight.
The new millennium continues to embrace traditional ciders as well as welcome adventurous concoctions from bold mad scientists.
We here at Red Clay are proud to join the ranks and be a part of cider history. Cheers!