Cider Brewing

How To Brew Cider

The Gear

  • 2-3 six gallon buckets with lids and airlocks
  • Starsan
  • Apple juice
  • Yeast
  • Yeast nutrient and any other optional additives
  • CO2 tank, keg, and siphon to use for clarifying, kegging and carbonating a few days before serving

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Starsan everything. Starsan your hands and lower arms. Repeat everytime you touch anything and are going to touch brewing equipment. Starsan the scissors used to open yeast packets. Starsan the yeast packets. Starsan the tops of the juice bottles. Clean and then starsan the brewing buckets and all airlock pieces and lids.


Grad Student Brews

2016: Name will go here.



Brewing Experiments

2016 Brew Test Batches


Tasting Day: Day 5 Day 12 Day 19 Day 5 Day 12 Day 19
Costco Apple Juice

Thin, sort of subtaste(?)

Dry, possible feet test/smell

V. dry and flat, slight tang

Almost like white wine with little flavour, strong(ish) apple smell

Smells like wine, v. dry and slightly vinegary.

Overall: acceptable, but not ideal 

Watery and thin,

Better than safcider

Still fizzy, more (JL) / less (HH) complex flavour than safcider,

V. similar to safcider

Fizzy on the pallette (lol), tart, good (!?) hard cider. Maybe like a sparkling cider.

Overall: Better than safcider.

Trader Joe's Organic

Sweet, dry aftertaste

Winner of day 5

Smells terrible, but tastes fine.

Biggest apple flavour (HH)

Smells sharpie-esque, with a slight hint of nasty

Overall: Lacking in taste, like fizzy water

Weird smell, thin/watery

Lacks much flavour

Smells like cider (HH), aftersmell (?)

Tastes like cinnamon toast crunch (JL)

JL favourite

Looks fizziest, sharpie-esque smell again.

Overall: Lacking flavour.

Fry's Opaque Cider

More apple taste,

Quite vinegary taste

Cloudy, sweet smelling, slightly sweet taste,

Acceptable cider, Overall winner of day 12

Smells like hotel linen cleaned in a B&B that bakes bread-esque...

Overall: Nothing repulsive 

Tastes like vomit

Smells like vomit

Smells v. dry like white wine, cloudy, 

v. little taste, white wine taste but subtle

B.O smell, okay taste

Overall: Second worst smell of day 19.

Combo Craziness (mix of both yeasts and juices)

Just no

Smells like bread

Smells yeasty/meatballs (overwhemingly so)

Sour flavour, but better than day 5.

Skunk smell, good god this is awful, terrible, really unpleasant.


Starting specific gravity measurement: 1.051 (for alcohol content calculations)