I swear at some point soon I’ll get back to blogging about code and computer programming! At the moment however I’m still finalizing some contracts, so I’ve been killing time by running more crazy homebrew experiments in my kitchen.
Fiesta Farms has a sale on gallon jugs of 100% pure apple cider, with zero additives or preservatives. I bought two of these (largely for the jugs themselves) but decided I had to do something interesting with the cider. It measured an initial gravity of 1.050 so I briefly considered making a simple alcoholic cider, but then got a much better idea…
I remembered reading the Washington Winemaker recipe for Apple Wine who used honey to push the specific gravity up to a wine level. Instead of making a wine, I wanted to add a bunch of water and honey and make a full apple mead.
APPLE MEAD (recipe for 18.9L batch):
- 2 US Gallons (2x 3.78L) Filsinger’s Organic Foods Sweet Apple Cider
- 5 Kg Burke’s #1 Ontario Amber honey
- Distilled water
- 5 g (1 tsp) Wyeast yeast nutrient
- Lalvin EC-1118 yeast
The brew process was pretty simple — just a matter of combining all the above ingredients into a carboy. I started by pouring the apple cider directly into the carboy. Next I dumped all the honey into a pot with some water, and heated it up until the honey thinned out a bit… then added it to the carboy. Added the yeast nutrient, then shook up the carboy a bunch to make sure everything was mixed up nicely.
The mix was conveniently just about the right temperature, so I pitched the yeast and it came to life barely an hour later.
One very unusual thing was that I couldn’t get a proper gravity reading. My hydrometer measured somewhere around 1.035 which is far lower than it should have been. I was targeting a starting gravity of 1.100, so unless I got duped with bogus honey, I’ll just assume this is the real starting gravity.
It’ll be winter before this stuff is ready, so I’ll post an update once I’ve had a chance to taste it!