Hegelian Wisdom and Local Foods

One of the most well-known ideas of the 19th Century German philosopher, G.W.F. Hegel is his exploration of truth being found in dialogue. According to Hegel's Dialectics, there's a statement that is made (thesis). Then someone offers a different perspective (antithesis), and some wisdom is gained in the process of building a synthesis of the two views (or one of them is proven to be incorrect).

Food & drink culture in America has gone through its own Hegelian dialectic. Before the vast networks of trade developed, everyone ate local. Subcommunities developed their own specialties based on cultural background and what grew well in their region. That was a time when local beers and ciders were incredibly common (there was also whiskey and fortified wines because they could survive long travel times).

The antithesis of that way of life came when the world grew smaller and global foods became more accessible than ever. While it was incredibly exciting to suddenly have access to products from around the world, it also meant that many local traditions were crushed under the weight of huge brands. Suddenly people in Nevada were drinking many of the same things as those in Maine.

Now, I feel as though we are finding a synthesis of the two lifestyles. With the rediscovery of local farms, small-business, and craft producers, we are slowly returning to a regional way of life, while retaining access to the flavors of the world.

I feel as though Ed Hyder's Market exemplifies this way of life as we focus on Mediterranean flavors and global wines, yet also work hard to carry local products and traditional New England staples. Cider is one of those staples that I am incredibly excited to see returning as that is traditionally one of New England's staple beverages, one that fits perfectly with our excellent apple-growing climate.