Malted cider or un-hopped apple ale?

Hi everyone,

So as I mentioned in my last few posts, I have a juicer, and I have a bit of extra malt.  So why not try throwing some malt into some apple juice and see what happens?

20130518_145533I went down to my local market and found a pretty good deal on organic juicing apples, i.e. apples that aren’t pretty enough to sell as eating apples.  I bought a hell of a lot – about 7 kilograms!

I had read in various places that you get about 1 litre of juice from 1-2 kilograms of apples, so I thought that this would be enough for about 4 or 5 litres of juice.  Unfortunately I was pretty wrong and only got about 2 litres.  I’ve since found out that this ratio works better for apple pressing, which is a much more efficient method of extracting juice.  Using a juicer like I have tends to lose a lot of juice to the pulp it creates.

I’m not going to go out and buy a juice press, but next time I may try squeezing out the pulp.  We’ll see.

Anyway, after cutting up a whole bunch of apples and juicing them, I wasn’t left with the amount of juice I thought I’d get.  So from there, things began to turn into an un-hopped apple beer rather than a malted cider.

I set my 2 litres of juice to boil and added a cup of golden light liquid malt extract.  The hot break was huge on this one; the pot was only about a third full, and it still nearly boiled over!  Once that was under control, I let it boil for 15 minutes while I did some cleaning.

After the boil, I let the bottle sit in a sink full of ice water for 10 minutes, emptied the sink, and then filled it up again for another 10 minute bath.

Once this wort was in the carboy, I topped it up with about 2 litres of water – so this batch is going to be 4 litres in total.

Two litres juice, one cup malt, two litres water

Two litres juice, one cup malt, two litres water

The yeast i used was an SN9 wine yeast.  It’s what I had on hand, but, considering there’s malt in there, I probably should have gone and used an ale yeast. That’s something to experiment with later.

The wort was tasty.  It wasn’t overwhelmingly apple-y or beer-y, but had good hints of each.  So I’m confident I’ll get something interesting out this.

The OSG was 1.028, which is a little lower than I would have liked.  As a lot of that sugar is fructose, I should be able to get a final gravity pretty close to 1, so that’s promising.  Alcohol content should be around 4% after bottling.

I’d like to see if I can push the alcohol content a bit higher, so I might add some dextrose next time.  Of course the other option is adding more malt or juice, but, assuming the mixture of flavours is good, I don’t want to upset this balance.  Dextrose won’t alter the flavour.

Assuming this turns out tasty, I’ll also look at hopping it, which will make it a proper beer.

So we’ll give this a week and see what happens!

-Chas

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10 thoughts on “Malted cider or un-hopped apple ale?

  1. mikey says:

    This is your attempt to turn me into a cider fan isn’t it? Well it won’t work!
    Actually, it might…

  2. […] you have read already, Chas is making cider. My views on this are pretty clear. Cider is not beer and therefore not as good. I’m prepared […]

  3. […] you have read already, Chas is making cider. My views on this are pretty clear. Cider is not beer and therefore not as good. I’m prepared […]

  4. […] I also had one of the malted ciders I made awhile ago.  It turned out great!  My house mate went crazy for it and stole the whole […]

  5. […] were tastings of a whole range of brews. Cider, dark ale, lager and porter. Reviews will be slowly going up over the next week out so. And then […]

  6. […] A while ago Chas ordered some malt for a brew and it exploded in the mail. A replacement of malt was sent, and about half of the original malt was still left. What a great opportunity to add malt to something, like a cider. […]

  7. gbrat says:

    This is whats known as a graff. I make them quite a bit. They go over pretty well in the summer.

  8. […] Law” Hopped Cider. Another experimental cider from Chas. As was pointed out to us, a malted cider is called a Graff. Not sure what a hopped cider (with no malt) would be called. Anyway, we got […]

  9. […] nearly a year ago I mixed some apple juice with some liquid malt; I called it a malted cider, some call it a graft.  Either way it’s pretty […]

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