Semi-Sweet Hard Cider

Brewing a hard cider is pretty easy. You get some apple cider, add some yeast, and wait. The yeast does all of the work and eventually turns all of the sugars into alcohol, leaving you with a nice dry hard cider. Here’s a great primer on Cider for Beginners.

Luckily, getting my hands on some fresh cider is pretty easy. A local brew shop, Sound Homebrew, does an annual pre-sale of fresh-pressed, unpasteurized cider juice from a Washington farm. I just take in a clean carboy and they fill it up. Beyond that, all that’s needed is yeast and time.

Making semi-sweet cider is a little bit harder. I’ve done this twice, but never wrote up my notes. This time I’m writing up my old notes prior to making another batch this Fall.

The main questions for making semi-sweet cider are:

  1. What kind of yeast to use?
  2. How to make it semi-sweet?

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Vive la Pêche Saison

The weather finally turned nice in Seattle and I hadn’t brewed anything yet in 2017, so I thought I’d take advantage of the 80+ degree weather for this long Memorial Day weekend and try brewing a Saison. I figured it will be nice to have on hand for the hot days ahead.

I’ve also been interested in making a Saison with Wyeast 3711 (French Saison), which has a lower temperature range than Wyeast 3724. It was 3724 (Belgian Saison) that led to the infamous Exploding Saison disaster.

To make things interesting, I want to add peaches during fermentation, so this is going to be a Peach French Saison–Vive la Pêche.

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2016 Pumpkin Belgian Blonde

For our annual pumpkin beer this year, we wanted to try something new. Jer found this article about designing the perfect pumpkin beer, and the mention of a Belgian pumpkin ale sparked our interest. Maybe we’ll get more pumpkin flavor with a lighter beer (compared to our usual Punkin’ Porter recipe).

See all of our previous Pumpkin Beers here

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Naptime Jasmine IPA

This brew is based on a clone of Elysian’s Avatar Jasmine IPA that I brewed on the stovetop during my toddler’s nap. Naptime Jasmine IPA. Naps aren’t that long, though, so I had to cheat and start before his nap and was still wrapping up when he woke.

I was running out of time to brew a beer this summer that would be ready in time to take to our friend Dean’s Brewfest in mid-September. I didn’t have the regular propane brew gear available this weekend, so I brewed on the stovetop for the first time since trying small batch brewing with the Apple Brown Betty Fall Ale.

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