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Home Brew Quick Start

As well as working with some fantastic breweries and helping connect the brewery's brew to your door, one of our team has a few home brew projects lined up himself and he's going to be sharing them with you and I for one never knew tea bags would be part of the recipe!

Over to the man himself...

For the past few years now I’ve been making can kits but now it seemed a good time to take the next steps and I’ve decided to bring you along for the ride.

Having recently moved house most of my brewing kit is either hiding in one of the many boxes yet to be unpacked or sitting at my parents’ house. So I’ve decided to make something simple which requires very little equipment or time - Turbo Cider.

As mentioned above this recipe doesn’t require very much equipment in fact you only need the following to make it:

  • A demijohn
  • Airlock and bung
  • Sanitiser
  • some empty bottles
  • Siphon
  • bottle caps and a bottle capper (unless you using swing top bottles)
  • 3L of apple juice
  • 100g of granulated sugar
  • 2 tea bags
  • A packet of sparkling wine yeast
  • (Optional) funnel



  1. Clean and sanitise the demijohn, airlock and bung (and funnel if you’re using one) and make sure they’re well rinsed or you might get a chemically taste (this is probably the most important step as if you don’t sanitise then you could get some bacteria in it which could spoil it and if you don’t rinse it properly then it might taste a bit chemically).
  2. Add the 2 tea bags to a mug and add boiling water and leave to brew.
  3. Gently heat up half the apple juice in a pan and dissolve the sugar, discard the tea bags and add the black tea to the apple juice.
  4. Let the mixture cool and then pour in the demijohn (the funnel comes in handy at this point, when I was looking at recipes none of them used one and it makes this so much easier).
  5. Pour the other half of the apple juice into the demijohn and give it swirl to allow it to mix with the rest of the mixture.
  6. Add the yeast to the mixture.
  7. Fit the bung and airlock.
  8. After about 10 minutes give it a shake so the yeast will be mixed in.
  9. Leave it somewhere that isn’t too cold and not in direct sunlight until the fermentation is complete which should take between 1 and 2 weeks (The air lock will stop bubbling when it’s done.)
  10. Then it’s time to bottle, so sanitise and rinse your bottles ,caps and siphon (and funnel) add another half teaspoon of sugar to each bottle and fill them with cider using your siphon, leaving about an inch empty at the top of the bottle then cap it. (It's always a good idea to sanitise more caps than you need as they don't go onto the bottles properly 100% of the time).
  11. Leave them a couple more weeks in a dark space that’s around room temperature and that’s it you’ll have made around 3L of cider. (once bottled this should keep for around 6 months but to play it safe don't exceed the use by date on the apple juice used).

Now I know what you’re thinking as I was wondering the same…

“Why put tea in it?”

Well I had a look and apparently it’s because the apples they use to make cider normally have more tannin in them than the ones they use to make juice. So if you want a dry cider then use the tea and if not then don’t.

This recipe can also be made with 4.5 litres of apple juice and still fit into a 1 gallon demijohn you’ll just need another 50g of sugar and some more bottles.


Once my cider is ready to drink I’ll post an update as to what it’s like and hopefully by that point I should be ready for my next adventure....

In the meantime if cider is your tipple, then have a look at our current cider selections from some more experienced but still independent producers.