My first cider: the tasting

So after a week and a half in the primary, one minor explosion, and a few weeks conditioning in the bottle, my first ever cider is finally ready for tasting! So how did it go and how does it taste?

Fermentation

Fermentation got off to quite a slow start, or at least a slower start than I’m used to. So after a day and a night in the basements, I gave it a little swirl. I then went down the next day and I’m pretty sure the fermentation took off. Maybe a little too much… It sort of exploded into the airlock a bit. But that’s fine, all I had to do was swap out the airlock for a freshly sanitised one and then the rest of fermentation went without a hitch.

Then after another week or so, it was time for bottling. I didn’t want this to be a fizzy cider so I just used a tiny amount of glucose in each bottle, just to give it a tiny amount of carbonation.

But now for the important bit! After bottle conditioning for 3 or 4 weeks it is time for the tasting! Now before I go any further, it’s worth pointing out how cheap this cider was to produce. The apple juice cost me EUR 6.50 and the yeast (of which I only used half) was only 1.95, plus a tiny amount of yeast extract means about 7.50 for 12 bottles of 7.0% cider so just over 60 cents a bottle this has the makings of a successful experiment. But what does it look like? What does it smell like? And, most importantly, how does it taste?

So, cards on the table, I did have a taste 2 weeks ago when the cider had only been in the bottle 2 weeks, and while it was certainly drinkable, it wasn’t amazing. Now though, after another two weeks it really has come into it’s own. Being from bog standard apple juice, its not the best cider in the world but I really am quite impressed. It is a dry and very refreshing cloudy cider that served cold will be perfect for when the weather gets a bit warmer. To be honest I’m not a huge cider drinker so I’m at a bit of a loss for words when it comes to tasting notes. I suppose it’s a bit like Old Rosie but with a much milder flavour. Anyway, this experiment has certainly been a success and I look forward to making more cider in the future. I might even get some more apple juice this weekend to use up the rest of the yeast. One thing is clear: I need to get better at cider tasting.

I would like to make cider from actual cider apples some day but for now I’m pretty happy with how this turned out for an experiment. I think I will use the other half of the cider yeast (which is currently chilling out in my fridge) to do the same again but substitute 1L of apple juice for rhubarb juice because… why not? What do you think? Have you made cider before or are going to in the future? Do you like what you’ve read? Do you think everything I’m doing is wrong and stupid and that I’m a bad person for doing it? Let me know in the comments below!

Also, while you’re here, why not check out some other posts like this one about some beer, or this one where you can download a PC game for free!

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