I want do a batch of simple hard cider and I have a packet of Stout yeast from a Munton’s Stout kit that I want to use for the cider. I need some opinions on what kind of effect this will have on my finished product. I am a relatively new brewer and have never made hard cider before. Thanks!
It will make good cider! With cider, yeast selection isn’t terribly critical. The end result is still going to taste like, well, cider. And dry yeast is ideal for cider because it’s cheap and because it’s not the critical element of fermentation. What is critical is the source of your cider, and going back even farther, the source of your apples, where they were grown, how well the apples were ripened and aged before pressing… you get the picture.
My standard cider yeast is WLP002 which is an English strain used for ales, porters, and stouts.
I find that I get better control over the fermentation which allows me to get the sweetness level I want. So go ahead and use it.
Good points made by all. The stout yeast will make a fine cider. The type of apples is important, but just about anything will ferment. I actually made a batch of cider from frozen concentrate Treetop apple juice. Turned out tasting like apple wine, but was still very good. If I ever do it again I’ll definitely spice it up a little with cinnamon and brown sugar, but I wouldn’t bother with spices until you get at least one batch under your belt. It’s hard to know how to tweak a recipe if you don’t know how your untweaked recipe turns out!
I only use dry ale yeast, so I agree with everyone that dry stout yeast will work just fine. On choosing the right apples, I can’t seem to get apples or fresh pressed juice to make it economical. I look at my ciders like a session drink. I want to get it from fermenter to mouth as soon as possible without suffering too much on quality. (if you don’t like the taste, why would you force it down)
I use 100% juice from costco (Kirkland Brand) and the price vs. taste is just right in my opinion. The final product is better than the big commercial versions at a fraction of the cost. I can also get it from 1 gallon bottle to 12 oz bottle in about a month and a half. (unfortunately it only takes a month for a batch to be consumed)
A premium bottle juice batch costs me about $25 (not including star san or bottle caps) A batch of local fresh pressed juice costs about $42. (Not including the gas to drive to North Georgia to get it) ($30+?) I’ve never pressed my own apples so I can’t comment on that.
I’m sure I could make a better cider, but I like and drink what I make now. I doubt I’ll ever win any competitions with it, but it certainly does what it’s advertised to do.