Last weekend I started my home brewing adventures and experiments.
In the end I put on two different brews at the weekend and added a third during the week:
- a basic honey mead which was pretty simple and straightforward. Honey, water, yeast and a very little else. As I really don’t know how well this is going to turn out I opted to only do one demijohn worth, which is around 4 litres.
- a kit based berry cider. Simple to use. You basically mix water with the “juice” and add in yeast. The quantity is a bit more than I’d have chosen, but all the kits are similar, so I’m working on about 23 litres of cider. We will see how well this turns out, as I had very little input or influence beyond adding the water.
- a simple apple cider. Apples are not in season at the moment, so I thought I’d try to use supermarket bought apple juice. The recipe I used was very simple. Apple juice and yeast. Nothing else.
All three batches are currently fermenting away rather vigorously:
Yeah I know that video doesn’t look great, but the key thing I wanted to show was how energetic the fermentation was. I shot that video a few days back and all three are still happily bubbling away. What’s really been fascinating to watch is how energetic the juice based cider has been. When I first added the yeast to the juice I was a little worried that something had gone wrong. After a couple of hours there was zero action. Not a single bubble. However when I got up the next morning I found that it had started bubbling away happily.
So what’s next?
The berry based kit cider should be ready for being moved to a different container in the next few days, though that will depend on whether the first fermentation is done or not.
The mead and the apple juice demijohns are incredibly active at the moment, so I suspect they’ll need another week before I do anything with them, though that might change.
For the apple cider I’m planning on using steel growlers instead of bottles. The quantity in the demijohns sort of lends itself to this. And I think the stainless steel growlers I got look spectacular.
I’ve also got a batch of PET bottles from one of the home brewing sites. And of course I’ve a load of recycled glass bottles.
Of course this assumes that the end products will be drinkable, which is not a given.
I’d expect the kit based cider to be “ok”. I’ve no idea how good or bad it will be, but I’d be surprised if it’s not somewhat drinkable.
The other two are unknowns.
So I guess I’ll find out in the coming weeks.