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Sparkling "Hard" water recipe

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NitrogenWidget

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so I made a gallon test batch.
1lb of corn sugar
yeast nutrient
1/2 cup lime juice.
Redstar premier classique )because I have a lot of it for cider)
took about 5 days to ferment out.
I think the lime juice slowed things down.
Tasted like seltzer water with a light bitter lime flavor so just like I remember it from the wedding I went to last yr.
got it cold crashing and will gelatin today then transfer to mr. beer bottles for carbing.

I also have a second test batch cold crashing.
only with table sugar alone.
this one fermented hard and fast and stalled at 1.020.
I even added more nutrient and brought the temp up to the low 70's and nothing after a few days.
so it's low ABV (~3.5%) and kind of sweet.
I don't think it's a bad thing and think i'll just add some lemon juice to it and see if that carbs in the bottle.
if not, still will probably be good to drink.

i'm thinking i'll probably just stick to corn sugar since that is what most of the kits being sold now contain.
Also those kits use crystallized citrus for flavor which is basically candied citrus peel ground up into a powder from my research.
 

Chedda

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Man this thread was a good read, so many great ideas. Making the northern brewer hard seltzer kit now. Having trouble, followed instructions to the T. Nothing happened after 3 days, bought another packed of EC1118 figured maybe it got to hot in shipping or w/e. Re-hydrated and repitched on the 5th day. Started bubbling w/in hours, checked it last night after 2 weeks. only went from 1.035 to 1.028. WTH. I swear I'm done with wine yeast, so tricky. I pitched a 3rd packet, now this am its foaming and bubbling away.

Next time around I'm using us-05 or nottingham. so much more reliable. Any ideas why I'm having so much trouble? I used distilled water and did the yeast nutrient steps for the first 3 days as per the instructions. basically 1/2 tsp of some nutrient and an accelerator.
 

brownni5

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Forgive me for not reading through 7 pages of threads, but I'm getting ready to keg my first hard seltzer.

I followed recommendations from Mitch E. at Speciation Ales in MI. They've started brewing and selling these, I imagine they're good for what they are.

At any rate, I made a 2.5 gal batch to start with. 2 lbs table sugar into hot water and a bag of frozen mixed berries. I'm told the fruit negates the need for yeast nutrients. So I suppose it's a very watered down wine? At any rate, got to 1.036 and pitched Bootleg Biology Oslo Kveik.

After a week or so, it was only down to 1.020, so I ended up adding Fermaid O and put on heat to maintain 90 deg F. A few days later, its down to 1.000 and my wife liked the taste of the sample.

A couple questions: when kegging, is there merit in adding Campden tablets to ward off oxygenation? At what pressure should I serve? I keep my beer system at about 14 psi - I assume that's too low?
 
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LoneTreeFarms

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I did not add Campden to my keg, I've got it set at the same pressure as my beer, simply because I cannot do two different pressures. the wife loves it.
 

h22lude

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Here's what needs to be done:
  1. Use a wine yeast.
  2. Use a TOSNA protocol (including proper rehydration).
  3. Degas multiple times daily for the first half of fermentation.
Obviously these techniques are new to beer brewers, but this is not beer.
Cheers
So if I'm using this correctly, for 5 gallons of 1.036 seltzer using Fermaid O and EC-1118, I'd need

5 grams of yeast
1.7 grams of Fermaid O each at 24, 48 and 72 hours after pitch then when gravity gets to 1.024.

Would I still use some Wyeast beer nutrient at pitch? And would you still recommend rehydrating now that most dry yeast manufacturers recommend direct pitching?
 

RPh_Guy

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So if I'm using this correctly, for 5 gallons of 1.036 seltzer using Fermaid O and EC-1118, I'd need

5 grams of yeast
1.7 grams of Fermaid O each at 24, 48 and 72 hours after pitch then when gravity gets to 1.024.

Would I still use some Wyeast beer nutrient at pitch? And would you still recommend rehydrating now that most dry yeast manufacturers recommend direct pitching?
The consensus is that with such a low starting gravity it's better to add all the nutrient at the beginning.

Don't forget the Go-Ferm.
  • Go-Ferm needed: 6.3 grams
  • Water to dilute Go-Ferm: 126mL
  • Yeast needed: 5 grams
  • TOTAL NUTRIENT NEEDED: 7.1 grams
 

RPh_Guy

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h22lude

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The consensus is that with such a low starting gravity it's better to add all the nutrient at the beginning.

Don't forget the Go-Ferm.
  • Go-Ferm needed: 6.3 grams
  • Water to dilute Go-Ferm: 126mL
  • Yeast needed: 5 grams
  • TOTAL NUTRIENT NEEDED: 7.1 grams
That makes sense. Or maybe even just two additions. Half at pitch and half around 1.020 since it seems a lot of people stale out there.

I normally don't rehydrate dry yeast so I was going to skip go-ferm and go with wyeast nutrient and direct pitch. I've never used wine or champagne yeast so maybe they are different. Cheap enough to give it a shot.

Was just reading about degassing. I assume seltzer isn't nearly as susceptible to oxidation as beer.
 

fun4stuff

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Wow, the ball is really getting rolling here. Just had a 12 pack of truly for my wife and i had a few. Egads its not very good. Schlenkerla's recipe sounds way better. The ingredients listed are here. It tasted very much like the sodastram seltzer water flavor. Made me wonder if water, vodka, and flavor could be carbed. Cant wait to hear how your recipe turns out schlenkerla and this is getting so interesting.View attachment 579720
You get best results from just carbonating water and adding vodka and flavoring to it.

We keep a keg of eater on tap. Add 2 oz vodka and a splash of juice (lime, pineapple/mango, etc) then fill with carbonated water. Tastes great and low calories.

There’s no reason to ferment this...
 

h22lude

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There's no reason to ferment beer. You can go buy a 6 pack and pour a pint in your glass
 

fun4stuff

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There's no reason to ferment beer. You can go buy a 6 pack and pour a pint in your glass
Haha, maybe i would if it tasted as good for same price and could put in my kegerator!

For me, a better analogy is using a 3 tier brew system (aka rube Goldberg machine) when is way easier to just BIAB. Only you will get a superior product by mixing vodka, juice, and juice.
 

h22lude

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Haha, maybe i would if it tasted as good for same price and could put in my kegerator!

For me, a better analogy is using a 3 tier brew system (aka rube Goldberg machine) when is way easier to just BIAB. Only you will get a superior product by mixing vodka, juice, and juice.
You can get kegs of commercial beer for your kegerator

Let's look at this logically...

7.75 gallon keg of Lagunitas IPA is $116, 5 gallons would be about $75. Brewing that at home would cost about $35. That is a 215% more to buy commercial.
5 gallons of vodka with seltzer water would take 2.5L of vodka to dilute to 5% ABV. 2.5L of Tito's costs $50 (forget about any fruit and assume you use tap water). To brew seltzer, it will cost about $20. That's 250% more to buy vodka. So your first statement doesn't go along with your logic of why you buy vodka.

To me, vodka, soda and fruit is not the same as hard seltzer brewed. The taste is completely different. If you like vodka better, that is absolutely fine. But others don't and they want to brew their own. Coming onto a brewing forum and saying there is no reason to ferment this is pretty silly.
 

NitrogenWidget

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You get best results from just carbonating water and adding vodka and flavoring to it.

We keep a keg of eater on tap. Add 2 oz vodka and a splash of juice (lime, pineapple/mango, etc) then fill with carbonated water. Tastes great and low calories.

There’s no reason to ferment this...
You can get kegs of commercial beer for your kegerator

Let's look at this logically...

7.75 gallon keg of Lagunitas IPA is $116, 5 gallons would be about $75. Brewing that at home would cost about $35. That is a 215% more to buy commercial.
5 gallons of vodka with seltzer water would take 2.5L of vodka to dilute to 5% ABV. 2.5L of Tito's costs $50 (forget about any fruit and assume you use tap water). To brew seltzer, it will cost about $20. That's 250% more to buy vodka. So your first statement doesn't go along with your logic of why you buy vodka.

To me, vodka, soda and fruit is not the same as hard seltzer brewed. The taste is completely different. If you like vodka better, that is absolutely fine. But others don't and they want to brew their own. Coming onto a brewing forum and saying there is no reason to ferment this is pretty silly.
yep.
the cost to run two kegs of my favorite flavors of this stuff for summer time drinking doesn't make sense.
even using the cheapest vodka i can still brew up multiple of kegs cheaper.
 
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fun4stuff

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yep.
the cost to run two kegs of my favorite flavors of this stuff for summer time drinking doesn't make sense.
even using the cheapest vodka i can still brew up multiple of kegs cheaper.
Yeah, we keep cranberry, lime, pineapple mango juice on hand, which are all good. Also have LorAnn oils from amazon for flavoring. We drink it with and without vodka, so i just have the carbonated water on tap. I have tried some artificial water flavorings (e.g. mio), but i don’t know like those as much.

It’s way easier and way more versatile than trying to ferment sugar water. You get multiple kinds of drinks from 1 keg that you can enjoy even when you don’t feel like getting buzzed.
 

NitrogenWidget

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Yeah, we keep cranberry, lime, pineapple mango juice on hand, which are all good. Also have LorAnn oils from amazon for flavoring. We drink it with and without vodka, so i just have the carbonated water on tap. I have tried some artificial water flavorings (e.g. mio), but i don’t know like those as much.

It’s way easier and way more versatile than trying to ferment sugar water. You get multiple kinds of drinks from 1 keg that you can enjoy even when you don’t feel like getting buzzed.
err, i guess i wasn't too clear.
I was disagreeing with you.
the cost of buying a couple litres of vodka to throw in a keg to carb up with water doesn't make sense when I can brew up my own for far far cheaper.
I toss a bag of sugar in a carboy, some wine yeast, and some nutrient once a day for a few days.
then let it do it's thing before dumping into a keg with some lime juice or madarine orange flavoring.
even better, I can brew it twice as strong then split it up between kegs.
 

stickyfinger

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the way i see it you can either add a ton of calcium and magnesium and then carbonate it or put it into the freezer after carbonating it. yes, it’s a bad joke.
 

CrysA

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i'm leaning towards trying to ferment cane sugar water, so i'm looking at 5.5 gallons water roughly 5# of sugar, additional yeast nutrient and energizer.

would I be better off using s-05 or a wine yeast for this? I have a few different strains of each, but being at work I couldn't say off hand what they are. I figure i'll run this on the same line I usually run soda as it's already set up in the kegerator for 30 psi.
I am on my 2nd batch of hard seltzer now and ec1118 yeast failed both times. 05 yeast is working magic. This round we do not have it on climate control and it is still doing well. We used tap water and dechlorinated it. It turns out nice and dry, not sugary and very similar to whitexlaw. Less flavoring is better than more so far... but I like dry wines and champagnes, not super sweet drinks.
You can follow along in my journey and catch up with the great comments there if you like. I did not think to look up hard water when i started my thread.

 

TGFV

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Holy crap! I walked away from this topic and forgot all about it to find out that this is still going strong and Hard Seltzer is a major thing!

Did not see that coming.
 

V8 Sonoma GT

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Read this whole thread. Wondering about reusing yeast. I finished my five gal of black currant, kegged it. Its good. Dangerously boozy. I reclaimed some yeast, wondering if anyone has tried using it again?
 
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