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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Cider Forum > First time making EdWort's Apfelwein - slightly varied
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Old 08-23-2013, 02:14 AM   #1
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Default First time making EdWort's Apfelwein - slightly varied

So I read a lot of the "Man, I love apfelwein" post and was instantly sold on the idea of making something so simple and yet so very delicious with proven results from many people. So today I went to costco and picked up some AJ and to the LHBS to get some yeast and decided to get it started...with a few changes. So just thought I'd post on here and update the progress on it and hopefully it turns out good and somebody else can try it or learn something!

The main changes were replacing the dextrose with honey, and using apple juice that wasn't from concentrate - figured better apple juice could definitely make a better end product. The juice at costco is also really cheap and delicious, I had a little left over from this and was drinking a glass of it while cooking up the batch! As for the honey, I just like the taste of it and have had some very good ciders/cysers with honey so hopefully it comes out at least a little in the end, if not it'll just boost the alcohol a bit....won't be as high as EdWort's though.

Ingredients:
- 5 gallons of Kirkland Fresh Pressed Apple Juice ($8.49/2gal at my local costco, not from concentrate so I definitely thought it was well worth it)
- ~1lb Kirkland Clover Honey
- 1 packet (5g) Montrachet

I took <12oz of the AJ and heated it up to a mildly hot temperature, just hot enough so that the pound of honey would melt into it...so I slowly poured that in and mixed it, the poured it into the carboy. I had one of the gallons chilling in the fridge for a little bit to bring down it's temperature and compensate for the heat from the honey-AJ mixture so it wouldn't be too hot to pitch the yeast. The I poured in the rest of the AJ - it was more like 4.9 gallons since the honey displaced it a bit, and threw it all into a 5gal better bottle all the way up to the neck, slapped an airlock on and put it in a dark area in my room. My plan is to let it sit for until it clears up...probably more like 6 weeks and then bottle and let it sit longer and just taste one at a time until I am satisfied with the taste. I may or may not backsweeten - sort of leaning toward keeping it dry since so many people say it is the way to go (and I do like dry ciders, but not bone dry).

O.G. was 1.057 - the honey didn't bring it up too much, but enough to get something that will be just over 7% which is right where I want it.

I'll keep updating this when I check on it. It will be back home while I am up in college but I do come back every few weeks. Wish me luck!

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Old 08-23-2013, 04:16 AM   #2
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Primary fermentation with a full carboy under airlock? That is a cider volcano waiting to happen lol... You might wanna think about dumping it all into a food grade bucket for couple weeks.

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Old 08-23-2013, 04:22 AM   #3
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Primary fermentation with a full carboy under airlock? That is a cider volcano waiting to happen lol... You might wanna think about dumping it all into a food grade bucket for couple weeks.
You would be right, if you weren't wrong . It won't bubble over.
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Old 08-23-2013, 04:39 AM   #4
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You would be right, if you weren't wrong . It won't bubble over.
Truthbomb goes bang!
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Old 08-23-2013, 03:01 PM   #5
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Primary fermentation with a full carboy under airlock? That is a cider volcano waiting to happen lol... You might wanna think about dumping it all into a food grade bucket for couple weeks.
Yea I certainly thought the same thing at first, but like suds said it will be fine. Ed does the same thing in his famous recipe and assures that there are no issues doing that with this particular yeast...he is the apfelwein king after all!
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Old 08-23-2013, 03:08 PM   #6
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Checked carboy this morning...just starting to take off, airlock is bubbling slowly but surely. I'll probably take a hydro reading tomorrow before I head off to college just to make sure it is running smoothly.

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Old 08-25-2013, 09:54 PM   #7
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Meant to post yesterday - but when I checked Friday evening (8/23) the airlock was bubbling like crazy! I'd say probably twice a second, and you could see aggressive carbonation rising in the carboy (but no foam/krausen). I forgot to take the hydro reading but I'm not too worried about it, since I know that this yeast will take it all the way dry and in a few weeks when I check back it should be below 1.000 hopefully. I will update then!

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Old 10-12-2013, 07:34 PM   #8
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Ok folks so I bottled my batch yesterday, it had been approximately 7 weeks in the carboy. FG was around 1.000....a bit higher than I expected. Could this be because the honey I added has some unfermentable sugar, or was it not done fermenting? I'm a bit concerned most people who use this yeast say that they achieve a FG of in the 0.990-0.995 range. I added 3/4 cup of priming sugar, standard for the 5gal batch, and bottled one in a plastic bottle for a carbonation tester just in case...if I notice it getting a lot firmer in the next few days I may just bottle pasteurize to be safe. Let me know if anyone has some advice on this, much appreciated.

Otherwise the cider tastes pretty good, definitely very dry and champagne-like and has very little body. The apple flavor is there but pretty subtle, but I suspect with age in the bottles it will come back more and more and smoothen out. Looks very clear, can easily read print through it. I have a really good feeling about how this will turn out!

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Old 10-13-2013, 03:00 PM   #9
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Next time you open a bottle, snap a pic!

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