Alternative Cider Yeast: Lachancea thermotolerans Overview

Alternative Cider Yeast: Lachancea thermotolerans Overview

As I noted in my Mâlus Trivium post about potential alternative yeast for hard cider, there are several I plan to trial for the next season so I thought I would highlight each. One of those is Lachancea thermotolerans. The Lanchancea genus is a relatively newcomer from a classification perspective. In 2003, a new multi-gene … Continue reading Alternative Cider Yeast: Lachancea thermotolerans Overview

Experiments in Sweetness: Sweet Hard Cider

Residual Sweetness: Hard Cider’s Elusive Objective

Being able to create a hard cider with some residual sweetness is often referred to as the holy grail of cider. The reason for this is because that sweetness can be used to balance the high acids often found in dessert apples and the tannins found in cider apples. This cider season I set about … Continue reading Experiments in Sweetness: Sweet Hard Cider

Stop Killing Your Juice: The Argument Against Campden

Stop Killing Your Juice: The argument against Campden

Usually, my answer to a question about hard cider is “it depends”. I generally try not to be definitive because there are simply so many unknown factors that being definitive is almost always wrong. However, for this article, I’m going to argue a definitive. The definitive is that you should not use Campden tables in … Continue reading Stop Killing Your Juice: The Argument Against Campden

Exploring the Colors of Hard Cider

Exploring the color of hard cider.

I’ve talked about the color of hard cider and how the process for making wine can be used as a reference. This is because like wine, cider color can be influenced by the fruit as well as the process. In another post on hard cider color, I explored how to make what I call silver … Continue reading Exploring the Colors of Hard Cider

Apple Peels: The Missing Ingredient of Hard Cider

Apple Peels: Cider’s Missing Ingredient

Apple peels can be yellow, green, red, blushed, streaked, sunburnt, and russeted. However, after noting the wonderful colors and even texture, we often ignore them once we start the cider making process. Did you realize that those peels are potentially the single most powerful ingredient in your cider making process? Most cider makers ignore and … Continue reading Apple Peels: The Missing Ingredient of Hard Cider

Hard Cider Tip #31: Estimating Cider %ABV

What’s the best way to estimate the %ABV of cider?

The Common (Old) Formula for Estimating %ABV %ABV = (OG - FG) x 131.2 You have seen the above formula in numerous online posts and books. I even include it in my book. But, is it the best formula for estimating the percentage of Alcohol by Volume (%ABV) in hard cider? What does it even … Continue reading Hard Cider Tip #31: Estimating Cider %ABV

Yeast: Killer Factor

Yeast Killer Factor: What does it mean and how could it impact your cider.

Killer Factor is not a measurement of the health risks associated with using a yeast in your fermentation. Instead, it is an assessment of how dominant a yeast can be in your fermentation. You may find commercial yeast strains labeled as one of four types. Killer (K)Sensitive (S)Neutral (N)Killer-Sensitive (KS) However, you may wonder what … Continue reading Yeast: Killer Factor

Hard Cider Tip #30: Pressing apples into cider

Methods for pressing apples

Maybe you realized those apple trees you planted a few years ago can actually produce quite a bit of fruit. Or, maybe your neighbor has a tree. Maybe you joined a social media group and have listened to enough people talking about pressing apples that you want to have a go at it yourself. If … Continue reading Hard Cider Tip #30: Pressing apples into cider

Hard Cider Tip #29: Aging on Lees (Sur Lies)

Aging on Lees

Aging on lees, also called ‘sur lies’, is a traditional practice for many wines and hard ciders. In Burgundy, France, there is a saying that translates something like ‘lees for wine is like a mother for a child’. The concept being that just like a mother nurtures their child, so to do lees nurture a … Continue reading Hard Cider Tip #29: Aging on Lees (Sur Lies)

Hard Cider Tip #28: Malolactic Fermentation

Malolactic Fermentation

There is an often referenced but just as often confusing process in hard cider making called malolactic fermentation. You might see it abbreviated by the acronym MLF and sometimes referenced as LAB. In reality, it’s not actually a fermentation process at all but is a bacteria reaction that converts malic acid to lactic acid (1). … Continue reading Hard Cider Tip #28: Malolactic Fermentation