Adding Berries To Apple Cider

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The Giant

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Howdy All

The lady friends are all hitting me up for a cider for Oz Day celebrations.

Normally I just do 21l Apple Juice, 500g lactose and cider yeast from craftbrewer and it has always been a hit.

However, I want to take a punt and make something even better. They have all been crapping on about these ciders with berries and lime and vanilla and stuff so this is what I am thinking.

Has anyone done anything similar or have any tips and hits. Thinking I need to put down tonight/tomorrow to be done in time.

21 litres of preservative free Apple Juice
s04 yeast (havent used before but checking the forums a few people recommend it for cider, cant get to craftbrewer in time for my usual yeast) will brew at 18degrees.
1 vanilla pod. Should I add this at the start or with the berries like below?
1 week into fermentation I was going to add 1-2kg of frozen berries just from the supermarkets. Hoping this will give some nice flavours but also some sweetness in place of the lactose.

I'm kegging so once FG gets around 1010 I will cold condition to stop fermentation and carb up.

Whats peoples thoughts? Any tips?

Cheers
Steve
 

nuggetron

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i tried this for my female
didnt work
added strawberries a week into fermentation 2 days later tasted like acid
throw caution i suggest
maybe brew normal cider and when serving add some berry cordial made from frozen berries water and sugar blended
just a suggestion
 

barls

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works fine with raspberries and black berries but if your going to use the supermarket ones id suggest closer to 2-2.5 in there. they tend to lack the aroma of farm berries.
 

The Giant

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Thanks guys, think i will still give it a crack. Only 1 way to find out if it works haha

I think i'm leaning towards using vanilla essence now as I'm worried about infection by just chucking the vanilla pod in.
I reckon 1 teaspoon would be sufficient for 21 litres of juice
 

Airgead

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I make berry meads all the time. To get a decent berry flavour I use around 500g berries in a 5l batch so to scale that up to a 20l batch you are looking at 2kg.

I blend them up and throw them in after primary fermentation then let them it ferment on the pulp for 7 days. After 7 days I rack off the pulp and let it ferment out. Works a treat.

They do need a little time to drop clear and age though so you may be cutting it a bit fine for oz day. Young they can be a bit astringent.

Most of the commercial berry ciders have very little berry flavour. Most of what people perceive as berry is just sweet. Those things are teeth curlingly sweet. If that's what they want you will need to go much sweeter than 500g lactose will get you. You may need to look at *shudder* artificial sweeteners.

Your other alternative is to brew a dry cider then add a belt of berry cordial when pouring which will give you both berry and sweetness (which is pretty much what they do with those commercial ones anyway).

Cheers
Dave
 

The Giant

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Thanks Airgead

What about boiling the berries down like a reduction? Would that make any difference. At this stage I was just going to use the frozen berry pack u can get at the supermarkets. The Mrs uses them in her cocktails hence why I thought of using them.

Not after the super sweet cider. We tried all different types of those rekorderling ciders and we all loved the apple and vanilla one and the apple and rasberry/strawberry one. However, we all said the berry one was to sweet.

I was hoping to not use the lactose this time in place of the berries and stopping fermentation early but I think I still may need it

Maybe I should just do apple and vanilla? Using the essence. The question is do I add it at fermentation or add it in the keg prior to carbing.
 

Airgead

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Thanks Airgead

What about boiling the berries down like a reduction? Would that make any difference. At this stage I was just going to use the frozen berry pack u can get at the supermarkets. The Mrs uses them in her cocktails hence why I thought of using them.

Not after the super sweet cider. We tried all different types of those rekorderling ciders and we all loved the apple and vanilla one and the apple and rasberry/strawberry one. However, we all said the berry one was to sweet.

I was hoping to not use the lactose this time in place of the berries and stopping fermentation early but I think I still may need it

Maybe I should just do apple and vanilla? Using the essence. The question is do I add it at fermentation or add it in the keg prior to carbing.
Boiling them down will give you a cooked berry flavour and will loose a lot of the volatile aromas. Could be OK but I suspect the fresh berry flavour is what you will be after.

I use frozen berries from a mob called frozberries. Same basic concept as the ones you get in the supermarket but these are supplied to restaurants etc and are twice the size and half the cost (round $5-$9 for a 1kg pack depending on what you want). Not sure whether they operate in Brizvegas though.

Berries won't add any sweetness to the cider. They will ferment out absolutely dry if you let them. All my fruit meads finish at 1.000 or lower.

For just apple and vanilla, I'd ferment it plain and dose it with the essence at bottling/kegging. There are a lot of delicate aromatics in vanilla that may not survive fermentation.

Vanilla is very easy to overdo. Dose up a known volume drop by drop until you get the flavour you want then work out from that how much to add to the full volume. You can be super accurate that way. Or you can steep a vanilla bean in the keg and taste every day until its right.

Cheers
Dave

Edit - Just checked. Frozberries are in QLD...

Queensland
Address:
Unit 3 / 2 Link Drive,
Yatala QLD 4207

Phone:
07 3804 7616

Fax:
07 3807 9442

www.frozberries.com.au
 

The Giant

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Thanks mate, much appreciated
 

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