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MiVT: Shacksbury Cider

Published: Sep. 21, 2020 at 2:41 PM EDT
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VERGENNES, Vt. (WCAX) - The Champlain Valley is known in the cider community as a world-class location for apple growing, so it makes sense that there would be so many delicious cider companies local in the area.

As our Elissa Borden reports in this Made in Vermont, there’s one cider-maker in Vergennes that’s got their craft creations down to a science.

Adding “fun” to fermentation -- that’s the goal at Shacksbury Cider.

That is, besides producing a delicious adult beverage.

Middlebury grads Colin Davis and David Dolginow met through mutual friends and pickup sports and found that they were both ready for a change of work pace.

“He and I started talking in 2012 about different ideas and basically cider kept bubbling to the surface," said co-owner Dolginow.

And in 2013 they launched, with neither one of them possessing a background in cider-making. But Dolginow had work history at an orchard in Cornwall, and Davis, a classic New England can-do attitude.

“He made it, I sold it basically back in the day when it was just the two of us… and so he didn’t know how to make cider, but he’s a very smart guy and he taught himself along with taking one or two of the few cider-making classes that are offered really anywhere," said Dolginow.

And now, the two have it down to a science.

“We ferment the cider, it gets blended into our different products and then canned or kegged. It fills them up and then it puts the lid on and seams the lid on and done," said co-owner Davis.

Done all in house, starting as apple juice and yeast, before becoming a crisp cider.

These ciders can take several weeks to ferment, depending on the product.

Davis says they put out 600 cases a day, with 24 cans per case, some distributed across Vermont, some sent to their Vergennes tasting room across the railroad tracks, and others sent all over the country. They have a cult following in Texas, Cleveland and California’s Bay Area.

Still booming in popularity, despite the pandemic.

“After spending a few weeks working on readjusted projections for the year we’re actually having a great year. It turns out that people drink in the good times and they drink in the bad times," said Dolginow.

Leaving a tasty mark on the cider industry one can at a time.

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