This is my second year making a cyser, this year I’ve timed it better for the holidays and it should be ready around December 10th. Cyser is both a cider and a mead, that may be a little confusing but if I say it’s a mix you might get the mistaken impression that you blend of the two. You can do this, but I like doing it all in one shot.
There really isn’t enough information presented here or in the video to teach you to brew a batch, unless you’re an experienced homebrewer already, but its something I like to do so I thought I’d share.
The Primary ingredients are:
- 1 Gallon Pasteurized Unfiltered Apple Juice
- 1 Gallon Commercial Apple Cider Without Additives
- 6 Pounds of Unprocessed Raw Honey
- 1 Pound of Brown Sugar
Yes, this will make a sweet batch and that’s the way I make it because that’s what those I share with like.
I boiled the honey and brown sugar together with 1/2 gallon of water and brought it to a soft boil for about 5 minutes, then scooped the ‘scum’ off the top. Then when I cut the heat off and I added added a table spoon of yeast nutrient and and a teaspoon of yeast energizer, stirred it in well and let cool covered until until 150 degrees.
Added it to juice/cider in a sterilized 3 gallon carboy with an airlock and pitched a tube of White Labs Yeast Sweet Mead Yeast, which promptly hung. I’m not sure if the yeast was too weak to do the job, or if the tiny little shop that serves the greater Boise region didn’t keep the yeast stored properly (I’m guessing the latter as White Labs has a great reputation;) but, after 36 hours with only a few bubbles I pitched Cote des Blanc in a starter.
I made a 6 oz starter with 1 tablespoon each of yeast nutrient, yeast energizer & dry DME, after it cooled to 70 degrees I pitched Red Star Cote Des Blanc, it got active in a hurry and I pitched it after a few hours of bubbling merrily away, it’s doing a great job with a must with a starting gravity of 1.317, as you can see in the video.
Last year’s cyser tasted great, but was an aesthetic disappointment. I’m going to work on having a clearer batch this year, I which may call for me to figure out a low-cost filtration option.
© 2009, Tim Boothby. All rights reserved.