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Old 09-01-2014, 07:14 PM   #1
carlsonderek
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Hi all

I got the cidr I want from my local apple farm as I have in the last three years, but this year it's OG is only 1.039. I'd prefer to be in the 1.050 range. I know apple juice concentrate can help but what other additions have you used in a hard cider to boost gravity that also are beneficial for taste? Thanks!


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Old 09-01-2014, 07:37 PM   #2
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I use brown sugar to boost my gravity. I have mine fermenting right now and I used about 1lb of dark brown sugar in 3 gallons of cider to boost the OG to 1.080. I want my final gravity in the 1.020-1.030 so I don't have to backwaters, but if I need to, ill just add some concentrate.

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Old 09-01-2014, 07:45 PM   #3
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I do the same and add brown sugar to raise the gravity and sometimes add honey too.

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Old 09-01-2014, 07:56 PM   #4
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Great! Thanks all!


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Old 09-01-2014, 11:24 PM   #5
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You can use anything that sounds good to you- brown sugar, maple syrup, honey, regular sugar, treacle, whatever.

I personally hate the taste of molasses and fermented brown sugar, which tastes like molasses without the sweetness, but others must like it. I like brown sugar when it's not fermented, but once it's fermented and the sugar is gone it tastes really horrible to me. Of course, I don't like molasses either and brown sugar tastes strongly of molasses once fermentation ends.

The more you boost the ABv, the less "apple cider" the finished product will taste. It will taste more winelike than cider like, if that makes sense. I love apple wine- it's fruity and crisp and dry, but doesn't really taste like apples any more than grape wines taste like actual grapes.

My favorite cider is 100% apple cider with some ale yeast added, even if it turns out to be a lower ABV drink.

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Old 09-02-2014, 12:41 AM   #6
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another technique you can use to boost the sugar concentration in your cider is simply to freeze the juice then when it has frozen solid invert the jug or bottle you froze it in and collect the juice as it thaws. The earliest thawed juice will contain the majority of the sugar so for example, after about 1/3 of the juice has thawed the gravity will be around 1.080. The more liquid that thaws the closer the gravity will be to the original gravity you measured until (obviously) when every last drop of liquid has thawed the gravity will be 1.039. What you need to do is decide the gravity you are looking for and constantly monitor and measure the thawed liquor until it reaches that gravity and at that point you need to remove rest of the frozen juice and discard the remaining ice.
The "cost" is that if you started with say 3 gallons of apple juice you will have considerably less - perhaps even about 1 gallon to ferment but the benefit will be that your cider will have about twice the apple flavor and twice the fermentable sugar without any addition of table sugar or molasses or honey or... whatever. This is a version of ice cider known as cryo-concentration
A good reference for this technique can be found in Claude Jolicoeur's The New Cider Maker's Handbook (2013)

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Old 09-02-2014, 01:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
You can use anything that sounds good to you- brown sugar, maple syrup, honey, regular sugar, treacle, whatever.



I personally hate the taste of molasses and fermented brown sugar, which tastes like molasses without the sweetness, but others must like it. I like brown sugar when it's not fermented, but once it's fermented and the sugar is gone it tastes really horrible to me. Of course, I don't like molasses either and brown sugar tastes strongly of molasses once fermentation ends.



The more you boost the ABv, the less "apple cider" the finished product will taste. It will taste more winelike than cider like, if that makes sense. I love apple wine- it's fruity and crisp and dry, but doesn't really taste like apples any more than grape wines taste like actual grapes.



My favorite cider is 100% apple cider with some ale yeast added, even if it turns out to be a lower ABV drink.

This is certainly something to think about. This is one of those things you know, but don't pay attention to til someone mentions it, so thank you!


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Old 09-02-2014, 01:31 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bernardsmith View Post
another technique you can use to boost the sugar concentration in your cider is simply to freeze the juice then when it has frozen solid invert the jug or bottle you froze it in and collect the juice as it thaws. The earliest thawed juice will contain the majority of the sugar so for example, after about 1/3 of the juice has thawed the gravity will be around 1.080. The more liquid that thaws the closer the gravity will be to the original gravity you measured until (obviously) when every last drop of liquid has thawed the gravity will be 1.039. What you need to do is decide the gravity you are looking for and constantly monitor and measure the thawed liquor until it reaches that gravity and at that point you need to remove rest of the frozen juice and discard the remaining ice.
The "cost" is that if you started with say 3 gallons of apple juice you will have considerably less - perhaps even about 1 gallon to ferment but the benefit will be that your cider will have about twice the apple flavor and twice the fermentable sugar without any addition of table sugar or molasses or honey or... whatever. This is a version of ice cider known as cryo-concentration
A good reference for this technique can be found in Claude Jolicoeur's The New Cider Maker's Handbook (2013)

Wow really cool technique, was not aware of anything like this. This is something I'm going to investigate with maybe a smaller/second batch this fall


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Old 09-04-2014, 08:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
The more you boost the ABv, the less "apple cider" the finished product will taste. It will taste more winelike than cider like, if that makes sense. I love apple wine- it's fruity and crisp and dry, but doesn't really taste like apples any more than grape wines taste like actual grapes.
Now, when I said that same thing to someone here on a few ocassions they told me that I'm just plain wrong. At 10% ABV, I can't detect any apple taste. I try to keep my ciders less than 9% ABV so they still taste like apple.
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Old 09-04-2014, 08:04 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carlsonderek View Post
I got the cidr I want from my local apple farm as I have in the last three years, but this year it's OG is only 1.039.
They might be watering it down a bit in an effort to stretch their profits. I'd ask them about it.
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