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Old 03-01-2009, 02:16 AM   #1
HomebrewMI
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Default First cider brew!

Woo Hoo, finally bought my gear today, picked up 5 gallons of Wal-Mart cider, starting it off tomorrow. The plan is currently just to use the 5 gal of cider and the liquid cider yeast I bought at my local HBS. However, depending on the initial SG of the cider, I might want to add some sugar...any thoughts from anyone on which sugar types/amounts would be best added to a first time cider? Thanks in advance!!

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Old 03-01-2009, 02:27 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by HomebrewMI View Post
Woo Hoo, finally bought my gear today, picked up 5 gallons of Wal-Mart cider, starting it off tomorrow. The plan is currently just to use the 5 gal of cider and the liquid cider yeast I bought at my local HBS. However, depending on the initial SG of the cider, I might want to add some sugar...any thoughts from anyone on which sugar types/amounts would be best added to a first time cider? Thanks in advance!!
if you are looking for something "different"

I personally reccomend trying 4 16 ounce cans of frozen concentrate.
boosts apple flavor and ABV quite nicely.
OR
Also in my limited experiance I can reccomend trying Turbinado sugar -adds a nice rumlike note to cider. you could try 2 pounds of this if you like.
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Old 03-01-2009, 02:33 AM   #3
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Hm, I don't know about going for different flavors this time, and at least for the first brew, I'm trying to avoid using concentrate. I will certainly have to try both of those in future brews, thanks for the advice!

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Old 03-01-2009, 03:22 AM   #4
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Hm, I don't know about going for different flavors this time, and at least for the first brew, I'm trying to avoid using concentrate. I will certainly have to try both of those in future brews, thanks for the advice!

why avoid applejuice concentrate? nothing "unnatural" about it - just apple juice with 75% of the water removed through evaporation. I always laugh at juce add campaigns that tout "NOT FROM CONCENTRATE" as if concentrated juice is a bad thing... its easy to transport and store - makes it cheaper and...
trust me - it's a great addition to Apfelwien - adds sugar (which will increase ABV) and boosts Apple flavor enough so that it's more "appley" when young.
(unlike if you use dextrose or white cane sugar - which in my experiance needs a little aging to get the real "apple" flavor back.
but anyway if you are looking for a flavor neutral sugar to boost OG, try dextrose (corn sugar) thats what EdWort reccomends for his basic receipe.
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In primary: Earl Gray hard cider,
In secondary: Blueberry apple Monster
Bottled: "All apple" Apfelwein, Mixed berry country wine, Kick yer' butt Hard Cider, "All apple" Achtung!Apfelwein, Kumquat mead, "All apple" hard cider.
Drinking: "All Apple" Apfelwein, Mixed Berry Country wine, Blueberry Belgian White ale.

comming to a carboy near you...
Redhook ESB clone
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Old 03-01-2009, 03:48 AM   #5
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Ok, for the apple juice concentrate, do you drop it in still concentrated, or rehydrate it first? I'm planning on saving some of my initial mix for back sweetening, so would I want to save some of the straight cider or with the concentrate added in? Thanks again for your help

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Old 03-01-2009, 04:59 AM   #6
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Ok, for the apple juice concentrate, do you drop it in still concentrated, or rehydrate it first? I'm planning on saving some of my initial mix for back sweetening, so would I want to save some of the straight cider or with the concentrate added in? Thanks again for your help

I put it in (thawed to room temprature) in concentrate form, added to 4.5 gallons of good quality apple juice (treetop or martinellis are my two favorites)

this will boost the sugar content (OG) a bit - 4 16 ounce cans of concentrate will be in the same ballpark as 2 pounds of dry sugar.

also, remember - if you backsweeten to taste with fermentables that you need to kill the yeast before you bottle, then force carb in a keg. otherwise your bottles go BOOM! if you want a sparkling bottle carbed beverage you'll need to sweeten with a non fermentable sugar, and prime with about a cup of sugar (or one thawed 16 ounce can of concentrate) for 5 gallons.

I work primarily in Champange yeasts (however I've got an safale04 ale yeast cider in primary) -so I'm not sure how dry/sweet the liquid cider yeast will end up fermenting... you may not even need to backsweeten it.
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In primary: Earl Gray hard cider,
In secondary: Blueberry apple Monster
Bottled: "All apple" Apfelwein, Mixed berry country wine, Kick yer' butt Hard Cider, "All apple" Achtung!Apfelwein, Kumquat mead, "All apple" hard cider.
Drinking: "All Apple" Apfelwein, Mixed Berry Country wine, Blueberry Belgian White ale.

comming to a carboy near you...
Redhook ESB clone
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Old 03-01-2009, 06:11 AM   #7
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Ok, Ive got to disagree about 16 oz concentrate to bottle carb. Thats too much. 13 oz concentrate is almost the same amount of fermentables as 5 oz (by weight) of corn sugar for 5 gallons of cider. 16 oz, while not dangerous, is overcarbing for cider.

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