Cider Words: Maturation

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Maturation: The time needed to make a cider ready to drink. Maturation is defined as the time it takes cider or wine to become ready to drink. I like to broaden that definition to mean the time a cider is stored without preservatives after primary fermentation finishes. I also often call this aging. You can … Continue reading Cider Words: Maturation

Cider Nutrients: The Need for Nitrogen (YAN)

Cider Nutrients: The Need for Nitrogen

Many books and articles that you read on fermenting wine talk about how you need to add nutrients and specifically nitrogen to ensure a healthy ferment. While lack of other nutrients can slow or stop fermentation prematurely, nitrogen is considered the number one cause for wine fermentation to slow or stop. This is because nitrogen … Continue reading Cider Nutrients: The Need for Nitrogen (YAN)

Cider Words: Light Struck

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The impact of light on cider. Does light pose a risk to hard cider? Beer is bottled in amber bottles to prevent what is called light struck or skunky beer. This occurs when photosensitive iso-alpha acids form 3-methyl-2-butane-1-thiol (MBT). MBT has a skunk odor. If hard cider includes hops, it can form this fault as … Continue reading Cider Words: Light Struck

Yeast Derivative Products (YDPs) & Aroma

The impact of Yeast Derivative Products on Aroma

Yeast Derivative Products (YDPs) can aid with fermentation by providing nitrogen and nutrients and with clarity by binding with colloidal compounds. But recent research has been focusing on how they can impact aroma. Remember that YDPs are just inactivated yeast developed to provide specific reactionary compounds. YDPs are made by using heat, enzymes, or even … Continue reading Yeast Derivative Products (YDPs) & Aroma

Cider Words: Maillard Reactions

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Maillard Reactions Create Color and Aroma In 1912, French chemist Louis Camille Maillard identified a chemical reaction between amino acids and reducing sugars. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins and reducing sugars are those like glucose, fructose, and sucrose. This is a common reaction in bread and baked foods but also occurs in … Continue reading Cider Words: Maillard Reactions

Cider Words: Yeast Derivative Products (YDPs)

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Yeast Derivative Products (YDPs) can aid fermentation, turbidity, and aroma. Have you ever heard of Yeast Derivative Products (YDPs)? If you are exposed to the wine industry, you have probably come across them as they are becoming more widely used in that industry. Rarely do I hear about there use in cider. I should clarify … Continue reading Cider Words: Yeast Derivative Products (YDPs)

Aging Cider with Oak

Aging Cider with Oak

I did a previous experiment using heavy toasted French and American oak on a cider to see if we could recognize a difference in the aromas. This led to using oak more often and to even start experimenting with different wood, like maple, hickory, and birch. Wood is a great adjunct for cider. Besides adding … Continue reading Aging Cider with Oak

Phenolics and Cider

Phenolic Compounds in Cider: Tannins

What exactly are phenolics? Are they tannins? I don’t think there a simple answer. If I told you there are two basics compounds, flavonoid and non-flavonoid types of phenolics, would that clarify it? It didn’t for me but, chemistry wasn’t my favorite subject in school. If I broke down the flavonoids into anthocyanins, flavan-3-ols, and … Continue reading Phenolics and Cider

Cider Words: Polysaccharides

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Polysaccharides and their influence on wine. Polysaccharides are carbohydrates, which are basically simple sugars, monosaccharides like glucose and fructose, linked together in long chains. Yeast can break these down into the simple sugars for use in creating ATP for reproduction. However, polysaccharides also react and combine with many endogenous compounds found in wine and cider. … Continue reading Cider Words: Polysaccharides

Cider Words: Autolysis

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Autolysis: The decomposition of yeast cells. Why does the flavor of cider change when it ages? Part of those changes can come from bacteria or yeast. This micro flora can make malolactic fermentation (MLF) occur or a souring by Brettanomyces yeasts. However, one of the biggest impacts can come from the yeast that fermented your … Continue reading Cider Words: Autolysis