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Old 11-19-2012, 03:10 PM   #1
Nannerfox
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Default Cranberry - Apple Cider

this is my third endeavor into cider brewing- I decided to mix it up with some variety. My first batch was strictly farm-fresh cider fermented dry as hell. My second was a grocery store special using concentrate in later stages, as well as a failed experiment with caramel.

I'm reeling back on batch 3, making a small 1 gallon test batch. If this works out great, i'll scale it up.

ingredients:
Yeast starter-
Lalvin EC-1118 (half package)
1/2 tsp yeast nutrient
10 oz bottle of Martinelli's apple juice (no preservatives).
Usually let this sit for about 3-4 hours until there are signs of life (that way if something goes bad, i'm out probably 2 dollars in materials versus a whole batch)

Pitched into my concoction of:
32 oz L&A brand All cranberry juice (no preservatives, no blends)
96 oz Santa Cruz "organic" unfiltered apple juice
8 oz Savannah Bee Co. "Winter White" Honey
1 1/2 tsp yeast nutrient.

I took a gamble on this mix. I wanted some pure cranberry and not just a "blend" or "cocktail." I'm hoping the cranberry flavor shines through in this batch due to it being a pure cranberry i'm using. The consequence of this is a low amount of sugar. I decided to boost with some specialty honey i found, however it still wasn't enough as my SG was 1.052. Pretty low for a cider, but i suppose my goal is to take it all the way dry. In hindsight, if this goes bigger i'll probably double the amount of honey per gallon- but we'll see how it works out for now.

I plan to also sit this on some cranberry concentrate in secondary. Will update as things progress!


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Old 11-20-2012, 12:05 AM   #2
popej
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Hey NannerFox, I'll be really interested to hear any updates on your batch. I just posted a thread on 3 1-gallon batches that I started yesterday: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f32/1-ga...orange-368863/

I'm also trying to get a good cranberry flavor out of an apple/cranberry cider. I went with apple juice base (OG of juice alone was 1.052) and ~4 oz of dried cranberries (boiled to saturate). This brought the OG up to about 1.060. I really don't know if this was/is enough to get the flavor profile I'm looking for.

I've also got an orange and pomegranate mix. Keep us posted!


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Old 12-05-2012, 01:54 PM   #3
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Well, racked this over to secondary last night. Fg was 1.005 so it's pretty much full dry (which is how I wanted it). Added a can of concentrate to it to give it some flavor to sit on for the next few weeks. Noted a STRONG yeast flavor to my cylinder/hydrometer sample. A lot stronger than any other cider I've made. Hoping this drops out some as it sits in secondary. So far I'm not too impressed with the ec-1118.

Next go around I definitely will add more honey and make it more of a cran-cyser hybrid. 7% abv seems a little low for this type of project. I prefer to be more in the wine range, but again I know my shortcomings were due to use of unsweetened pure cranberry juice and no added sugar other than the small amount of honey.

Updates will come as they progress!
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Old 12-18-2012, 08:23 PM   #4
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Alright, bottled this last night after a few tweaks. After adding concentrate i ended up kickstarting a fermentation in secondary obviously. Not a bad thing, but it ended up being a slow ferment and definitely not what I was banking on time-wise. It was still even bubbling when i went to bottle, the hydrometer said we were around 1.010 still. Primed with probably half the amount of sugar that I originally would have needed, and will probably crash with pasteurization within a week.

As far as the flavor goes- holy crap. RICH cranberry flavor, and the yeast finally did drop out of it. Probably not for all palettes, especially if you don't like cranberry. If I were to do this again, I'd use less cranberry in the beginning, add more honey, and only use concentrate for the cranberry flavoring. Would probably yield a higher ABV in the end as well. Either way, that's why I did this as an experiment small scale before Dialing it up!
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Old 12-21-2012, 12:29 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nannerfox
Well, racked this over to secondary last night. Fg was 1.005 so it's pretty much full dry (which is how I wanted it). Added a can of concentrate to it to give it some flavor to sit on for the next few weeks. Noted a STRONG yeast flavor to my cylinder/hydrometer sample. A lot stronger than any other cider I've made. Hoping this drops out some as it sits in secondary. So far I'm not too impressed with the ec-1118.

Next go around I definitely will add more honey and make it more of a cran-cyser hybrid. 7% abv seems a little low for this type of project. I prefer to be more in the wine range, but again I know my shortcomings were due to use of unsweetened pure cranberry juice and no added sugar other than the small amount of honey.

Updates will come as they progress!
When you say concentrate are you talking about apple or cranberry?
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Old 12-21-2012, 03:20 PM   #6
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Great report Nanner! Thks for the info.


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