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Old 12-16-2009, 10:35 PM   #21
JonGoku
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Originally Posted by Freezeblade View Post
Brands I've used:

Treetop (3-apple blend and normal), Motts, Target brand, First Street (Smart & Final), Kirkland (Costco), Albertsons (clear and unfiltered), Simply Apple, Trader Joe's (McIntosh, Gravenstein and Fresh Press, Used the unfiltered stuff too, but it's discontinued now), Martinelli's, Mrs Gooch (Whole Foods).

So Far the Martinelli's has been the best, but it's a bit expensive (although on sale for $5 a gallon at Costco right now), after that it's the Trader Joe's Fresh Press. Treetop is middle of the road, Kirkland is not from concentrate, but lacks in the acid and tannin department. Wost has been the Smart & Final stuff.
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I kicked off two batches on 10/20 - one using Mott's and one using Kirkland (Costco store brand). They're still young, but the Kirkland definitely has a more pronounced apple flavor and seems a bit smoother.

They're both going to age for a while longer, but at this point the next batch is looking like it will be with the Kirkland juice.
Good timing for me on this discussion, I've already picked up 10 gallons of the Kirkland Fresh Press 100% Apple Juice, but I'm debating on whether or not to go forward with it or use a different brand.

I have access to Tree Top as well as this Santa Cruz Organic Apple Juice which is really peaking my attention as it comes in glass gallon jugs which could be reused later for brewing small batches of this or that. The only thing with the Santa Cruz stuff is sediment layer at the bottom (shake well before drinking etc.) and I'm not sure if this is good or not for Apfelwein. Any thoughts? I'm sure I'm over thinking this, and perhaps the best thing to do would be to return some of the kirkland and do a side by side test with two different brands or mixes of brands, but with all the gallons of this stuff brewed I'd assume a majority of the taste testing should be done by now. Whats the best apple in the barrel?

Cheers!
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Old 01-11-2010, 11:40 PM   #22
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I always used to use Teetop 3 apple blend, but have switched to Indian Summer and the results are amazing.... I wont go back to the tree top crap anymore!!!

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Old 01-12-2010, 12:47 AM   #23
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Default My Best so far

Walmart Great Value @ $2 per 3 qrt.
I make 3 gal batch:
$8 for 3 gal juice
$5 for 2 lbs honey
couple of teaspoons of sulfate something or other to stabilize
$2 for a can of cran apple concentrate to back sweeten.

Keg and force carb!

And......it's PINK!!

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Old 01-13-2010, 11:51 AM   #24
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Good question,
I've stopped using concentrate and gone to Tree Top and the Wallyworld brand. Someday, I'm going to get off my Scottish arse and spring for real-pressed-at-a-local-orchard cider to ferment.

I'm sorry to be so lazy.

Cheers to all,
Michael

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Old 01-13-2010, 05:31 PM   #25
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I have my first batch going using HEB's Central Market Organic Fresh Pressed (Not from Concentrate) Unfiltered Apple Juice (wooh, that's a mouthful!). We'll see how it turns out. I think next time I'll run it through the strainer - all of the unfiltered stuffs fell to the bottom on the second day, and the whole batch looks super cloudy.

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Old 01-13-2010, 06:00 PM   #26
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I have my first batch going using HEB's Central Market Organic Fresh Pressed (Not from Concentrate) Unfiltered Apple Juice (wooh, that's a mouthful!). We'll see how it turns out. I think next time I'll run it through the strainer - all of the unfiltered stuffs fell to the bottom on the second day, and the whole batch looks super cloudy.
I've made apfelwein with the filtered and unfiltered apple juice and put in pure apple juice concentrate- it turns super cloudy during active fermentation no matter what I use. I am pretty sure that it is normal for it to go cloudy. The unfiltered juice did take longer to clear and I have one with unfiltered juice and honey going that is going on three months with no sign of clearing yet. I would just relax a bit and not worry too much. But I am sure that folks with more experience at making wine will chime in soon and let you know if it is ok.
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Old 01-13-2010, 06:03 PM   #27
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Yeah it's started dropping normal sediment (I just pitched on the 10th and it's very vigorously fermenting) - we'll see what happens! It's got a good while to go - I picked up some sparkelloid in case it hasn't cleared by the time I bottle.

Thanks for your input!

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I've made apfelwein with the filtered and unfiltered apple juice and put in pure apple juice concentrate- it turns super cloudy during active fermentation no matter what I use. I am pretty sure that it is normal for it to go cloudy. The unfiltered juice did take longer to clear and I have one with unfiltered juice and honey going that is going on three months with no sign of clearing yet. I would just relax a bit and not worry too much. But I am sure that folks with more experience at making wine will chime in soon and let you know if it is ok.
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Old 01-13-2010, 09:20 PM   #28
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man I've made this recipe eight ways from sunday! Apple juice, cider, cheap, expensive, organic, not so organic, even pear. They ALL turn out good. some better than others but always good.make a bunch. see what you like. to the OP, I use the wally world cheap sh*t on a regular basis when I want 5 gal of 10+ % for under $10.00. (which is often)

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Old 01-17-2010, 12:45 AM   #29
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Tree Top 100% Apple Cider for $4 something from Safeway. My first apfelwein and its mighty tasty.

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Old 01-17-2010, 01:28 AM   #30
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I just found out that ALDI has apple juice that would work for about $1.20 per 2 quarts so $12 for 5 gallons. Not bad, havent used it yet though

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