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Old 02-07-2008, 01:41 AM   #1
Zul'jin
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SWMBO likes Woodchuck. Hey, so do I. After reading their site, with no dang recipe for brewing it myself- imagine that, I learned it is not apple beer.

I recently sampled some HBT style Apfelwein I made. It's taste is like apple flavored water. It's good an all, definitely alcoholic, I just want something closer to Woodchuck. My Apfelwein is still very young, too. It's about 3 weeks and I did not carbonate it.

Anyone able to duplicate Woodchucks or that type of very appley, somewhat sweet and bubbly style?

Thanks
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Old 02-07-2008, 01:59 AM   #2
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I wouldn't mind seeing a recipe for that either.

 
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Old 02-07-2008, 02:32 AM   #3
Kai
 
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I've never tried Woodchuck cider, never having seen it 'round here, but if you want it to be sweet like Woodchuck appears to be (or many other commercial draft ciders), your options are: pasteurize it and drink it still or force carb; lactose; or stirring a teaspoon of sugar into your glass.
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Old 02-07-2008, 04:27 AM   #4
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It is more than just sweetness that is different, it is really a completely different flavor than the Apfelwien that I have.

About the only way I can think of to get close to the same flavor would be to make a strong apfelwien, kill off the yeast, and add a BUNCH of apple concentrate. That would bring the apple flavor and sweetness back in, and cut the alcohol level down closer to normal by diluting the brew.

Since you killed off the yeast, you'd have to force carb to get any fizz to it.

Note that I have NOT tried this, as I haven't got to the kegging stage yet and can't force carb.

If anybody has an actual tested accurate recipe, I'd love to hear it, too. It was the possibility of making homemade woodchuck that convinced the SWMBO that homebrewing might not be such a bad idea.
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Old 02-07-2008, 06:04 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Docapi
It is more than just sweetness that is different, it is really a completely different flavor than the Apfelwien that I have.
According to their website, Woodchuck adds sugar at the bottling stage after sterile-filtering the cider to remove the yeast and prevent refermentation in the bottle. Apple character is more prominent in sweet cider than in dry, so just adding sugar should help to bring it out.

The most likely cause for the "completely different flavour" that you refer to is that Woodchuck is fermented from a blend of apples designed to produce good cider, whereas the apfelwein was made from apple juice intended for drinking.

The easiest Woodchuck product to clone would probably be the Granny Smith. Since there's no need to experiment with blending apple varieties, you could concentrate on perfecting the process of stabilizing, back-sweetening, and force-carbing it.
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Old 02-07-2008, 06:27 AM   #6
c.n.budz
 
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Use Nottingham yeast instead of Montrachet and you will get a much sweeter initial product. Back sweeten with lactose at bottling if you want to sweeten it up some more
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