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Old 09-24-2012, 01:08 PM   #1
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Default Weak tasting cider

Hi, I tried making a cider out of store bought, pasteurized, apple juice. I have had great success with making wine of the same apple juice, but my cider turned out tasting of virtually nothing.

It was estimated at around 5.5 - 6% abv. I only used the sugar which was naturally in the juice and did not add any extra. The yeast I used was Lalvin EC-1118. It fermented at around room temperature.

Does anyone have any idea of what might have went wrong?

Thanks

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Old 09-24-2012, 03:46 PM   #2
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I know if I am making hard cider from store bought juice, I add in strongly steeped tea and some lime juice, I find the added tannins and acid give the final product a fuller tastes for lack of a better explanation. You could also use wine tannins and acid blend from your local home brew store. Also I found using an ale yeast like Nottingham made a better final product then a wine yeast when making a lower % cider as opposed to a higher % apple wine. Cheers!

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Old 09-24-2012, 04:02 PM   #3
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My apple wine didn't have any taste either, I will try the above recommendation to use a less attentive ale yeast this year.
The champagne yeast combined with the added sugar made mine super dry (0.996), taste like a white wine.

I bought some acid blend but I have no idea how to use it, what does this contribute to taste and when do you add it in?
With the tea, this sounds like it may be a good idea. How does it affect fermentation and would it be better to add this in the secondary or is it fine in the primary?

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Old 09-24-2012, 05:33 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agent44 View Post
I know if I am making hard cider from store bought juice, I add in strongly steeped tea and some lime juice, I find the added tannins and acid give the final product a fuller tastes for lack of a better explanation. You could also use wine tannins and acid blend from your local home brew store. Also I found using an ale yeast like Nottingham made a better final product then a wine yeast when making a lower % cider as opposed to a higher % apple wine. Cheers!
Thanks for the reply! Which flavor tea? Just earl grey? And how many bags for how many litres?
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Old 09-24-2012, 09:24 PM   #5
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not trying to piss on anyone's parade but i would steer very clear of adding any citrus to cider. if you need acid, get some sour apples like granny smiths and juice them, or get some malic acid powder, you can mix it in after fermentation to taste (sugar in the raw juice will mask the sourness to some extent). be careful adding powder to recently fermented liquid, it will foam up like a science project volcano. dissolve in boiled water first. for tannin i like to add crabapples. you can juice them, or freeze them and mash them up to extract the tannins. i have read on here about adding tea but never tried it, maybe it's fine, but when i can grab a handful of crabapples from a neighbor's tree why would i. earl grey has a lot of other stuff in it like orange peel by the way

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Old 09-24-2012, 09:25 PM   #6
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I like to add fruit juice concentrates to my store cider. I've been using 1 can concentrate before pitching yeast and 1 can as priming sugar. I'm looking at getting a kegging setup tonight so I'm not sure if I'm going to keep using 1 can or two. Trying different flavors of concentrate can make interesting flavors too (2 cans cranberry/apple concentrate is one of my favorites).

Tonight I'm also pitching yeast into a store bought juice cider to which I've added diced crab apples from my decorative tree. I'm hoping it adds some nice tannins.

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Old 09-24-2012, 10:15 PM   #7
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Yeah addin malic acid is probably better then adding the lime juice, but I've neve used it myself. My last batch was a raspberry cider, for five gallons I steeped five bags of raspberry zinger and five bags of Canadian breakfast tea, sort of the same as English breakfast or any red rose tea for that matter. I didn't use lime juice though as I added cran/rasp cocktail and raspberry cocktail into it, I figure there was enough acidity from the juice to cover it, although I haven't bottled it yet, the samples have been tasty http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f32/agen...-cider-344988/ here is the link.

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Old 09-25-2012, 04:24 AM   #8
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I have done the same thing with the same resul. Pressed frsh cider, dried all the way out, back sweetened with concentrate, bottler carbonated and I drank 1 every month. For me it tasted like nothing, no mouth feel, very little apple taste, essentially boring as hell. At 9 months aging, something happened. Now it tastes like a commercial cider. That is still not great, but I am no longer embarassed for someone to try it. In the future I will play with the recepie (add granny smits and crabapples as stated above) as well as waiting 9 months to a year till I drink it. I make cider and mead and everything seems to have a 1 year age time minimum. Just get started and a year from now you will have more than you can drink, just keep making them and adjusting the recipie...take good notes so you know what you did a year later

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Old 09-25-2012, 08:45 AM   #9
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Thanks for all your replies guys. I made a batch last night using the tea tip from agent44. I hope it turns out well. Just one last thing; when bottling, should i degass it before bottling and priming?

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Old 09-25-2012, 12:09 PM   #10
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A little acid blend and/or a little wine tannin might help, adding some crab apples will help quite a bit. A lot of wine yeasts can strip out a lot of flavour, especially champagne yeasts. I use ale yeast for ciders now, they work great. I usually add a couple of cans or FAJC (thawed) to the juice to make it even more appley & boost the ABV.
Regards, GF.

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