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Cider with hops

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Mr.Wyatt

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I'm attempting to do a cider with hops. So the first 2 ciders I attempted did not come out as I expected at all. They were very dry like a champagne and not sweet at all. I dont think I added enough brown sugar in them.
Anyway I tried a cider a few weeks back with hops in it and loved it. Im confident I can brew this. So my question is has anyone done this and how did it turn out and what hops did you use?
 

Maylar

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I'm attempting to do a cider with hops. So the first 2 ciders I attempted did not come out as I expected at all. They were very dry like a champagne and not sweet at all. I dont think I added enough brown sugar in them.
I can't comment on using hops, as I've never done that. But cider will always be dry out of the fermenter regardless of how much sugar you use. Sweetness has to be addressed after fermenting is complete.
 
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Mr.Wyatt

Mr.Wyatt

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I can't comment on using hops, as I've never done that. But cider will always be dry out of the fermenter regardless of how much sugar you use. Sweetness has to be addressed after fermenting is complete.
I've always read it depended on the yeast. I should have mentioned i used Lalvin 118 yeast the first 2 times.
 

Maylar

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EC-1118 will take any cider totally dry. Most ale yeasts will too, unless you're over 12% or so ABV. The sugars in apples are 100% fermentable.
 
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Mr.Wyatt

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So how much sugar do you add on the back end to make it sweet. I have never been a fan of dry ciders as well as dry wines
 
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Mr.Wyatt

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EC-1118 will take any cider totally dry. Most ale yeasts will too, unless you're over 12% or so ABV. The sugars in apples are 100% fermentable.
So how much sugar do you add on the back end to make it sweet. I have never been a fan of dry ciders as well as dry wines
 

CKuhns

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So how much sugar do you add on the back end to make it sweet.

I would say - None - The yeast you used and the remaining yeast in suspension even after racking will very likely consume any sugar you add up to 18% alcohol.
You must inhibit, kill or remove the yeast to add additional sugars.

I prefer a just off dry cider 1.004 using:
- Cold crash, time, clarifying at 1.010 and bottling after "finishing" to 1.004 then immediately after bottling Pasteurization.
- If i do go dry then I add Frozen Apple Juice Concentrate after clarifying (Apple flavors come with it) and again rely on pasteurization to kill any remaining yeast.

See Pappers Sticky at the top of the forum for pasteurization techniques and search @Chalkyt threads as he has a lot of info on this forum.

There are chemicals out there to inhibit yeast from preproducing and filter set ups to remove the yeast.
- If none of those are an option:
- Cold crash, time (Months) and clarifying does often work as well. (Although not 100% guaranteed.)
- There are non-fermentable sugars available as well. (Xylitol to name one)
 

V-Fib

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I'm really far from a cider expert (or even a homebrew expert) but in the few batches of cider and skeeter pee I have done I have been able to use potassium metabisulfite and potassium sorbate to stop any farther yeast activity. I was OK bottling them, one in swing top Grolsh bottles and the other capped. After I added the the potassiums I let the carboy sit for about a week and racked to a secondary. The I added whatever flavor and sweetener I wanted and let it sit for 2 weeks to make sure no yeast activity started before bottling. For sweetening I've always used frozen juice concentrate.

And 5-10 ml addition of lactic acid helped balance things out also.
 

V-Fib

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I did also try a malted cider once but it was probably 3 years ago. I don't remember not liking it but I don't remember loving it also. It might be something to look into. The recipe I have written down was 2 gal honey crisp cider, 2 gal regular cider, 2 lbs amber DME, 0.5 lbs crystal 60L, 0.5 oz glacier hops and 1 oz torrified wheat. I steeped the grains at 170F for 15 minutes then added the glacier hops and DME for 15 minutes in 1 gallon of water, added everything to a carboy and fermented with US-05.

After that I have no notes written down.
 

drgonzo2k2

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Regarding hopped ciders, I make them all the time. They are one of my favorite ciders to make. In fact, I'm making 10 gallons tomorrow.

I recommend you don't try to boil the hops or anything like that. Instead just use them to dry hop. I generally dry hop my ciders for 5 days at about 65F and have really good results.

I think a mix of hops yields better results than just a single hop. My two favorite hop combinations are Citra/Simcoe and Amarillo/Simcoe. I recommend 30g of each hop (so 60g total) in a 5 gallon batch. Perle/Cascade and Galaxy/Motueka are also pretty good, but everyone loves the Citra/Simcoe, so that's usually what I make.

Another favorite that I've not done in a while is my double "IPC." That's 5 gallons of cider/juice + 2 lbs. corn sugar, dry hopped with 60g each of Citra and Mosaic. It usually comes out at about 7.5-8%. You should really warn people though, as it doesn't taste like an 8% beverage at all and goes down pretty quickly.

It's also a good way to use up older hops. Anything that sticks around over a year here goes into my "cider hops" bag.

As far as the yeast goes I go back and forth between S-04 and Safcider yeast, but I don't have a really strong opinion either way.

Have fun!
 

Chalkyt

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Yep, the numbers above pretty much line up with my hopped cider experience. I work towards a cider with a touch of sweetness, finished at 1.006 or thereabouts. I often use SO4 which can finish at around 1.004, just a bit above dry.

I sometimes hop a cider that needs a bit of "something" plus a bit of sweetness. So bottling at 1.010 or above, then heat pasteurising at 1.006 to stop at about 2+ volumes of CO2 carbonation does the job.

I have used Galaxy and Cascade hops but I believe Citra is good also. I also use 3 grams/litre (about a teaspoon) which is similar to the quantities in the above post and put the hops into secondary about a week or so before bottling. The trick is to taste, taste, taste as the cider takes on the hop flavour very quickly... too much hops and you go past the point of no return before you know it.

The other "trick" is to put the hops in a large teabag, tie them in muslin or something similar, and enclose or attach weights like glass marbles or stainless steel nuts so that you can jiggle them... because dry hops float and just make a mess if they are thrown into the cider loose and just swirled or stirred. Just make sure that you can get the hops out again once you have reached the flavour level that you want if you are not ready to bottle at that point. You can get stainless steel "torpedoes" for hopping beer but they are too big to fit into most secondary carboys.
 

Dancy

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Back sweeten with Splenda after fermentation is complete. Sweeten to taste. I add it to the bottling bucket.
I do the same for my Graf using Trulia for my sweetner. Trulia tastes the most natural to me but go by your own taste buds 😁
 
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Mr.Wyatt

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Regarding hopped ciders, I make them all the time. They are one of my favorite ciders to make. In fact, I'm making 10 gallons tomorrow.

I recommend you don't try to boil the hops or anything like that. Instead just use them to dry hop. I generally dry hop my ciders for 5 days at about 65F and have really good results.

I think a mix of hops yields better results than just a single hop. My two favorite hop combinations are Citra/Simcoe and Amarillo/Simcoe. I recommend 30g of each hop (so 60g total) in a 5 gallon batch. Perle/Cascade and Galaxy/Motueka are also pretty good, but everyone loves the Citra/Simcoe, so that's usually what I make.

Another favorite that I've not done in a while is my double "IPC." That's 5 gallons of cider/juice + 2 lbs. corn sugar, dry hopped with 60g each of Citra and Mosaic. It usually comes out at about 7.5-8%. You should really warn people though, as it doesn't taste like an 8% beverage at all and goes down pretty quickly.

It's also a good way to use up older hops. Anything that sticks around over a year here goes into my "cider hops" bag.

As far as the yeast goes I go back and forth between S-04 and Safcider yeast, but I don't have a really strong opinion either way.

Have fun!
i was thinking of using a citra/lemondrop combo
 
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