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Easy Dry Cider


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#1 earthtone

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Posted 22 April 2010 - 07:14 AM

So out here on the east coast we get local pasteurized apple juice in one litre cans that occasionally go on sale for about 89 cents each.I would love to do some more ciders from fresh squeezed juice, even let a couple wild ferment but a 1 gallon jug of cider goes for about $18 so the cost has always made me shy away. Damn starving student-hood.This is the alternative I have come up with, my girlfriend is unable to stomach gluten so my homebrew is off limits for her, she drinks strongbow all the time and so I was shooting for a dry cider and after drinking this recipe for a year now she has told me that mine beats strongbow out hands down. That might also have something to do with my cider being on tap but it is what it is...on to the recipe.20x (1litre) cans of pasteurized pure apple juice1 lb Honey1 bag of frozen raspberries1 package Llavlin 1118 Champagne YeastI leave it in primary 2-3 weeks, rack to a keg and age for a couple months then serve. A delicious blush cider that is cheap and easy to make. Comes out at about 1.055 OG and finishes super dry - which is how I like it. Not a fan of sweet ciders or beer for that matter.
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#2 zymot

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Posted 22 April 2010 - 07:51 AM

It is common to see raspberries added to meads and beers after primary fermentation. The idea is that fermentation will drive off the delicate flavors and aromas of the raspberries.This makes sense to me, as the sugars convert to CO2 and the CO2 bubbles up through the cider, they will carry some of the raspberry flavors with them.If were me, that is how I would do it.In fact it sounds very nice, I might put a raspberry/honey cider on my list of ciders for next year.zymot
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#3 earthtone

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Posted 22 April 2010 - 10:11 AM

I have tried both adding to secondary and adding to primary and there is a noticeable difference in the amount of raspberry flavour that makes it through adding to secondary rather than primary. when tasting side by side however I tend to like the one that is more subtle so I have opted to add into primary and get a more focus on the cider flavour and just a bit of raspberry colour and flavour in to back it up. I also find that ale yeasts are much more ferocious than the champagne yeast and I get more fruit flavour in secondary of a cider than I do adding to secondary of an ale even...I also really like single stage fermentation because it is easy and hands free but by all means if you are making this and want to let the berries shine a bit brighter I would do 2 weeks in primary then 2-3 in secondary on the fruit before kegging and aging.Thanks for adding that comment!:mellow:
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#4 davelew

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Posted 23 April 2010 - 12:17 PM

I would love to do some more ciders from fresh squeezed juice, even let a couple wild ferment but a 1 gallon jug of cider goes for about $18 so the cost has always made me shy away. Damn starving student-hood.

Around here, you can get a 1 gallon jug of fresh cider from a farmstand for $3 or $4 in the fall, but you have to go right to the farm. I've found that the ideal level of dryness really depends on the cider. I think some apple varieties have a lot more malic acid, and need more sweetness to balance the acid. I have one cyser where I needed to add 10 pounds of honey to 5 gallons of cider before I could sip it without making a face. Another option, instead of adding fruit or honey, is to deliberately starve the yeast of nutrients so that the ferment "sticks". You can do this by adding pectic enzyme, waiting a couple of days, then racking the cider off the dregs and pitching yeast into the clear must.
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#5 earthtone

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Posted 24 April 2010 - 09:32 AM

Interesting, yeah in the fall prices are much better here too because of all the orchards. I actually really like cider that is so tart it makes that pinching feeling in the back of your mouth so I'll probably stick to trying to dry that sucker out as much as possible. Because I use the same juice every time I have found I can get a cider right in the (my) sweetspot pretty easy with the 1118.
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