Cider apple


Cider apple

Cider apples are a group of apple cultivars grown for their use in cider production. In the UK the Long Ashton Research Station categorised Cider apples in 1903 into four main types according to the nature of their flavour components[1]. For Cider production it is important that the fruit contains high sugar levels which encourage fermentation and raise the final alcohol levels. Cider apples therefore often have higher sugar levels than Dessert and Culinary apples.

  • Sweets This group is low in tannins (<0.2%) and acidity (<0.45%).
  • Sharps This group is high in acidity (>0.45%) and low in tannins (<0.2%). The high acidity, together with that from the bittersharp group, can add 'bite' to the cider.
  • Bittersweets This group is low in acidity (<0.45%) and high in tannin (>0.2%). The raised levels of tannin, which tastes bitter and is astringent, adds a bitterness to the cider. A certain amount of bitterness is expected in ciders of the West Country Style.
  • Bittersharps This group is high in both acidity (>0.45%) and tannin (>0.2%).

Normally, ciders are blended using juice from several apple cultivars to give the best results. There are few varieties that will make a good cider all by themselves, Golden Russet is one such variety, and is prized in both single variety and multi-variety blends of cider.

Three apple cultivars from England are 'Kingston Black', 'Stoke Red', and 'Dymock Red':

The two most famous American cider apple cultivars are Harrison Cider Apple and 'Campfield'. They both originated in Essex County, New Jersey before 1776.[3]

Notes

Cider is made in several countries and can be made from any apples. In the UK there are two distinct styles one using Dessert (eating) and Culinary (Cooking) apples (Eastern Counties Style) and one using special Cider apples used only for cider production (West Country Style).

References

  1. ^ http://www.cider.org.uk/appledat.htm
  2. ^ http://www.orchard-group.uklinux.net/glos/apples/Dymock+Red.html
  3. ^ William Coxe (1817). A view of the Cultivation of Fruit Trees and the Management of Orchards and Cider. Philadelphia. 

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