1

I'm brewing a Wilko Pear cider kit. The method was to empty the can of juice into the FV and add 1.5kg of brewing sugar and enough water to bring it up to 23L. I started it off just under 3 weeks ago and it has just finished fermenting (I had some temperature issues that were solved with a brew belt).

My cider has just about finished primary fermentation (I'm waiting to make sure the gravity remains constant). I gave it a taste and I was a little disappointed, as it tasted rather bland (like soda water and pear-drops).

Will the taste improve after secondary fermentation and clearing? If not, is it possible to improve the taste of the batch at this point?

  • What was in your kit? What was the process? Probably it will not get better. Taste and aroma will rather fade away than increase... But again, what was it, exactly? – Mołot Feb 29 '16 at 15:58
  • Wilko Pear cider kit. The method was to empty the can of juice into the FV and add 1.5kg of brewing sugar and enough water to bring it up to 23L. I started it off just under 3 weeks ago and it has just finished fermenting (I had some temperature issues that were solved with a brew belt). – AssLemon Mar 1 '16 at 17:53
  • and sugar is your problem. It brings alcohol, but not taste. Could you edit additional information from your reply into your question? – Mołot Mar 1 '16 at 18:03
  • How do you suggest I adapt the kit in the future to improve the taste? – AssLemon Mar 1 '16 at 21:07
  • You got my suggestions in my answer few seconds ago – Mołot Mar 1 '16 at 21:08
0

Your taste might be improved by carbonation, that's true.

Sadly, other issues won't change. It will not get richer. Sugar is an enemy of rich taste. It brings alcohol, but nothing more. For now, bottle, let it carbonate, or play with it. For future:

  • Do not add sugar.
  • If you do add sugar, do not add "brewing sugar". Like, never. Forget it. It's a mix of, well, no one knows unless it's on the label, and even then there usually are no proportions stated. Here is my look on sugars if you want details. If you have to, chose what you want and mix your own.
  • Use less water or more juice concentrate instead of sugar. Or replace some water with 100% apple juice from juice carton. Sure, it's not as good as fresh apples, but still better than sugary water. Of course, no preservatives.
  • Do not "bring to X liters / gallons". Natural apple juice has 10~11 Blg / 1.04~1.045 OG. Mix to get solution with original gravity within these borders. Hydrometers are really cheap. Nothing wrong with having 23 liters, of course, but that's not what counts when it comes to taste.

Sadly, what you got seems to be pretty typical "kit quality" and won't improve much on it's own. Luckily, next time you can improve it.

  • In reference to the linked question on sugar, in your opinion would glucose be the most appropriate sugar to use in the case of a cider (if required)? – AssLemon Mar 1 '16 at 21:22
  • @AssLemon Not really. it gives no taste. Table sugar is said to sometimes give fruity or winey tastes - that's a flaw in beer, but might be a good thing in cider. Anyway, apple juice concentrate (frozen or no) would be most honest sweetener. Other things will just fail to bring apple taste to your drink. – Mołot Mar 1 '16 at 21:25
1

Congratulations on your first batch!

Perry can have very subtle 'pear' flavor and still be to style.

Carbonation will make a big difference in flavor.

Sounds like everything went as planned for the kit, this is just how some of them are. Also one of the big reasons most homebrewers don't use kits after they know they like the craft and want to do more batches.

  • Thanks! I'll go ahead and barrel it and see what happens in the next month or so. Perhaps carbonation will settle my worries. – AssLemon Mar 1 '16 at 21:31
1

My experience with apple cider is that taste is better after six weeks in the bottle. Sometimes longer depending on the batch. Tannins mellow with age.

The thin sensation does not go away on it's own. Echoing Evil Zymurgist carbonation reduces the thin sensation. Adding acid blend or wine tannins or black tea also helps with apple. I haven't tried with pear.

If you are going to try additions do it in small measured amounts using a small sample of cider. Then scale up for the rest.

This is your first batch so if you are going to add anything consider splitting it and bottle some without additions. Then you have a couple experiments and can see which you prefer.

  • I'll barrel the cider and give it time, if it doesn't go too well it's a lesson learned for next time. I'm planning to do a supermarket apple juice turbo cider once my FV is free, and I've got some wine tannin, so I'll give that a go in the next one if it's a bit bland. – AssLemon Mar 1 '16 at 21:34

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.