hist-brewing: cider

BrewInfo brewinfo at xnet.com
Thu Dec 2 15:46:37 PST 1999


Eylat writes:
>You need to start with good apples.
>A mixture of sweet and tart arr the best.  Red and gold delicious, Granny Smith,
>Braebury, Gala, etc.  You need the tart apples with the acids to balance the
>sweet apples.  It also adds complexity of flavor and a nice roundness.
>Woodchuck and others do not add extra sugars to ferment, they will add sugars
>after ferment (and stabilization, either sorbastat or pasturization).
>Red Star Cote de Blanc is a nice easy good yeast to use.
>Sugars   1.040 to 1.060    Acid   .8 to 1.0 titrate as tartaric.
>
>Mash the apples into a pulp (pomace), then let sit and brown slightly.  Then
>press the pomace in a wine or fruit press.   A food processor will not do.
>Some cidermakers will add the browning thru caramel colors.
>
>Hope this can get you started.
>
>Bowen MacTarbh wrote:
>
>> Greetings unto the list;
>>
>>      A friend recently introduced me to alcoholic apple cider, a brand
>> called woodchuck. I now turn to the list for information on brewing a good
>> sweet apple cider.
>>
>>                                              Respectfully;
>                                              Bowen

Actually, what you would *really* like are cider apples.  Northern Spy
is one variety I know is available in the US.  My favourite cider apple
is called Kingston Black, but I've as yet been unsuccessful finding
a nursery that carries them in the US.

Proper cider (Woodchuck is just a so-so cider... what you want to do is
try real fresh, farmhouse cider *in* southern England and northern France)
is not just a blend of tart and sweet, but it is a balance between tartness
(sourness), sweetness and astringency.  Yes, the tannins we so try to avoid
in beer making, we welcome them in cidermaking.  Actually, completely
tannin-free beer is pretty flavourless... perhaps it is the *type* of
tannins that makes the difference?

In any event, cider apples can be used by themselves because they have
been developed to have a balance of sweet, tart and tannic flavours.
I have heard that if you only have sweet and tart apples available, then
you can add tannins via "grape tannin" which you can buy from winemaking
suppliers, or you can add some crabapples to the mix before crushing.

I would not intentionally allow the apple puree to brown at all... there
will be plenty of browning even if you work very fast.  Some people expect
some of that oxidised flavour others understand it for what it is.  It's just
like those people who attribute skunkiness to imported beer and they simply
don't like un-skunked Heineken/Beck's/etc.  Similarly, my grandfather
tells me that he once gave a properly rolled cigarette to a Russian
soldier, who hated it... seems he was used to smoking cigarettes rolled
in newsprint and missed the burning ink flavour.

Sheesh!

Al.

Al Korzonas, Lockport, Illinois, USA
korz at brewinfo.org
http://www.brewinfo.org/brewinfo/

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