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ZachR
11-09-2009, 06:48 PM
I have been searching around for a recipe to make a braggot with apple cider as a base. I found a Caramel Apple Mead (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f80/caramel-apple-mead-68519/), but I am looking for something a little simpler on a 1 gallon scale. Also, I would like to have something that will be ready to drink in a shorter time frame while I am waiting for other meads to age.

This is what I was thinking:

1 gal pasteurized local apple cider
1 lb light DME
2 lb local honey (I have wildflower and gallberry, anyone know anything about gallberry honey?)
-should I maybe cut it down to 1 lb to make aging less of an issue?

Also, I was thinking about possibly using a high attenuating ale yeast instead of wine yeasts, but I can't figure that out without knowing the estimated OG. I tried to plug this into the Mead Calculator, but it does not have DME as an option. Can anyone help me with those calculations?

Thanks in advance.

akueck
11-09-2009, 07:09 PM
DME is something like 45 gravity points per pound per gallon. Individual brands will vary, but that should give you a decent ballpark. Liquid extract is like 37 or so, honey I use 40 as a rule of thumb.

%Attenuation numbers for ale yeasts get thrown out the window when you move to mead. The base sugars are inherently more fermentable, so you'll (almost) always get better attenuation.

ZachR
11-09-2009, 08:17 PM
According to the Recipe Calculator, apple cider gives ~36pts/gal, so:

1lb DME = 45
1lb honey = 40 (2lbs would drive this over 1.155)
1 gallon cider = 36
estimated OG = ~1.120

I'm thinking with an OG that high, this stuff won't be drinkable for a long time... maybe I should cut the honey to .5lb to get the gravity down to 1.100 and use an ale yeast.

Will hops make for a more quaffable beverage in a shorter amount of time?

wayneb
11-09-2009, 11:11 PM
Hops will add bitterness and either grassy or citrus (or both) flavor components that would actually make this less drinkable early on. Hops are good as a preservative in low alcohol beverages, and their citrusy, hoppy bitterness balances well with residual non-fermentable sugars in grain beverages, but I personally think they can overwhelm the profile of a drier beverage pretty quickly.

akueck
11-10-2009, 12:42 AM
I agree, hops might not be called for. The citrusy varieties might make for an interesting aroma addition, but I personally wouldn't use any for bittering. The alcohol/acid in this should be enough to balance out any residual sweetness.

Brad Dahlhofer
11-11-2009, 01:54 AM
If it were me, I'd stay away from the citrus hops. I can't imagine citrus and apple going well together, but again, it's just me. I think the noble hops are a better choice.

As for malt, I'd go with something with less fermentable sugars than a plain Light DME. Try an extract that's made with some Munich and Crystal malts like the Briess DME Dark. It'll provide more body to balance the apple and honey. Those sugars are going to ferment out completely dry at low gravities, so you'll want something to provide some body and residual sugars. Also, the dark malt should accentuate the apple. Make sure to choose a honey with enough character to stand up to it. I really like the wildflower I get here in Michigan with our cysers.

Try shooting for a SG 1.085 and 35 Alpha. Should be plenty drinkable in about a month or two. Use a good English ale, or Scottish ale yeast.

Cheers!

ZachR
11-15-2009, 04:32 PM
Thanks for all the suggestions. I decided to just leave the hops out of it... made the boil shorter and easier, and I didn't have to strain the hops out afterward. Used 3lbs of amber DME instead of the light as Brad suggested.

Here is my brewlog (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php?t=15229) for the batch if anyone is interested.