Samuel Smith's Cider

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Andreas

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Earlier this week I had a bottle of Samuel Smith's Organic Cider and really enjoyed it. I'd like to make something similar -- sparkling and with an alcohol content around 5%.

Here's my idea for a recipe:
3 gallons of cider (really, cloudy local apple juice)
1 packet of a yeast like Safale 04 or 05.

My questions for the cider experts:
1. What kind of final gravity reading can I expect before bottling? (From what I've read, I expect to bottle after about 4 weeks, right?)

2. I like my cider to be bubby. Should I prime it with the same amount of dextrose (corn sugar) as when I prime beer, or is there another technique suggested for cider?

Thanks,
Andy
 

Mr. Nice Guy

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I'm not too sure about your FG but you will get more apple flavor with aging. I think your yeast choice is good. I know SS has malic acid in it but there are more variables than that, like how much malic is naturally in the juice you use, apple variety, etc. so you probably don't need to add any.

1. You can possibly bottle in four weeks depending on temps, etc. You will be better off if you bulk age it. (leave in carboy or rack when ferm. is slow)

2. Same amount... I like champagne like carbonation so I am experimenting with higher levels of corn sugar.

I am also on a quest for a cider like SS's, hopefully this helps. I think you are about as close as you can get with the recipe, just remember time is the most important ingredient.

Apfelwein is kinda close BTW...
 
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Andreas

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Thanks for the reply.

As far as the acidity of the juice goes, I know that their are "old" varieties of apples that are grown locally (here in Vermont) -- they are specifically used for cider making and, in elaborate mixes with other apples, for baking what my family considers to be the best apple pies. I'm fairly certain that I can taste those kinds of apples in the SS cider.
I'll have to wait until autumn for those apples, however. For now, I'm going to experiment with the available unfiltered juices. I started a 1/2 gallon test run in my cellar this evening!
-Andy
 

Mr. Nice Guy

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Cool, let us know how it turns out!

I have a apple juice plus nottingham, montrachet, D47, and pasteur yeasts going as well as some montrachet with concentrate and a cyser... trying to see what I like the best.
 
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Andreas

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Interesting recipe -- I imagine that the purpose of the tea is to get more tannins, and the lime gets tartness. I think that this is taken care of by selecting the source apples with greater care. The apples used in commercial apple juice tend to be very low tannin, and not particularly acidic.

I _believe_ (based on my taste buds and conversations with the proprieter of West County Ciders in Colrain, MA -- not based on my (non-existent) cider-making experience) that hard ciders call for a mix of high acid and high tannin apples. So most commercial apple juices are not particularly suitable to replicate the flavor profile of some hard ciders.

The teabags and lime juice are an ingenious solution! However, I do want to try to get the flavor from apples. (My wife's apple pie calls for 1/3 high tannin, 1/3 high acidity, 1/3 high sugar apples -- this fall, I'm going to try a cider with the same components!)
-Andy
 

Tusch

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You are correct andreas, cider apples are much like baking apples. However, many of us do not have access to fresh pressed juice from a more cider minded apple variety, but we make do!

Oh and apples were originally brought to america to drink not to eat :rock:
 

JLem

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Earlier this week I had a bottle of Samuel Smith's Organic Cider and really enjoyed it. I'd like to make something similar -- sparkling and with an alcohol content around 5%.

Here's my idea for a recipe:
3 gallons of cider (really, cloudy local apple juice)
1 packet of a yeast like Safale 04 or 05.

My questions for the cider experts:
1. What kind of final gravity reading can I expect before bottling? (From what I've read, I expect to bottle after about 4 weeks, right?)
I'm in the process of aging something similar. I racked to secondary when the gravity was 1.002 (took 10 days to get there from 1.050). My cider has been sitting in secondary for over a month now and I do not seem to be anywhere close to ready to bottle - still not clear at all. So, I would not count on being able to bottle at 4 weeks. It may be possible, just don't count on it, unless you want to bottle it cloudy.
 
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