Autumn Tasting: American Cider at Innisfree with Dan Pucci and Craig Cavallo

October 8, 2022, 4:30 PM — 6:00 PM

Autumn Tasting: American Cider at Innisfree with Dan Pucci and Craig Cavallo
4:30pm-6pm, Saturday, October 8, 2022
$45; $35 Northeast Dutchess residents & Innisfree members; $5 for family members under age 21
Register here

As the day winds down in what is traditionally the peak of fall in the Hudson Valley, gather with family and friends beside Tyrrel Lake to savor the beauty of Innisfree Garden and two great American ciders selected by Craig Cavallo of the Golden Russet Café & Grocery in Rhinebeck. If you would like to pair yours with appetizers or a picnic supper, bring your own basket of goodies or pre-order local, seasonal food expertly prepared with cider in mind by Babette’s Kitchen in Millbrook.

Craig Cavallo and Dan Pucci, co-authors of American Cider (Ballantine Books, 2021), engaging storytellers and acknowledged experts on the subject will discuss the two ciders we are tasting, touching on the rich history of this ancient alcoholic beverage and the vibrant culture of farmers and makers who craft it today. They will be happy to answer questions and copies of their book will be available.

As the book lays out with authority and specificity, cider is not just a lost craft addressing a sense of nostalgia, but a road map for a way forward that respects the environment, invigorates rural economies, and can provide pleasure for future generations of growers, drinkers, and makers.
Alex Raij, chef, restaurant owner, and author of The Basque Book

In tasting extraordinary cider, taste the idea of nature as muse. This belief in fundamental connections between people and nature, and the way specific qualities of place shape human culture and experience defines Romanticism—past, present, and future—and deeply influenced the Innisfree landscape. Read more about Romanticism at Innisfree and our Roots of Inspiration series here.

These ideas of interconnectedness are also central to cider making. Dan Pucci expands the traditional understanding of terroir, the environmental factors that influence the taste, color, and bouquet of artisanal agricultural products, including wine, chocolate, and cider, to what he calls “social terroir…the environment, including climate, geography, and soil, [and also] the growing process—the people, culture, and techniques used to bring the fruit to harvest.”

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

NOTES: Cider is alcoholic, be prepared to show ID. Tasting tickets for those 21 and over include two glasses of cider; non-alcoholic beverages will be available to all ticket holders. You must buy a tasting ticket for each person attending. When you purchase your tasting ticket on our website, you may also order Babette’s Kitchen foods. The last day to place food orders is Friday, September 30. Bring a picnic blanket or folding chairs as only limited outdoor seating is available. This event will be held rain or shine, but a tent will be available. Tickets are non-refundable.

Dan Pucci is one of the nation’s leading cider experts. He was the founding beverage director at Wassail, New York City’s first cider bar, and restaurant, and has since traveled the country in continued pursuit of cider education, awareness, and research. He is a partner in Wallabout Hospitality, a New York City-based consulting and hospitality company, and 2022 winner of the American Cider Association’s award for a special contribution to the cider industry.

Craig Cavallo lived in New York City for years, working in restaurants, blogging about food trends, and writing for Saveur. His work has been published in Condé Nast Traveler, GQ, New York Magazine’s Grub Street, Thrillist, and Vice Munchies. Now he’s in the Hudson Valley, and when he’s not at Golden Russet Café & Grocery, which he owns and operates with his wife, Jenny, he can be found picking fenceline apples and dabbling in his own cellar cider experiments.

Register here