My first graf

Every year I make a six pack that I hand out to my friends and coworkers.  I’ve made them IPAs, pale ales, porters, stouts, and other typical beer styles.  This year I wanted to mix things up.  While doing some research on what to make for this year, I came across a recipe for graf.  Graf is, in essence, a malty hard cider.  Despite it being the #4 recipe of HomebrewTalk’s  Top 100 there was very resources outside of HomebrewTalk.  I decided to do two things: Make a graf and document it.


Brandon ‘O’s basic recipe seemed pretty straight forward: make a 1 gallon partial mash and boil it for 1/2 hour.  After that add 4 gallons of apple juice. I made some minor modifications while staying true it:


  • 1# Light DME
  • 1# Amber DME
  • 8 oz of Caramel 60L
  • 1 oz of torrified wheat.
  • 4 gallons of Kirkland Apple Juice (OG is 1.050)

1 gallon of water

.4 oz of cascade hops

1 pack of US-05

I was able to make this 5 gallon batch in just under 2 hours, which is lightning in the home-brew world.  I was also able to do this inside the house too. That was due to the fact that my wife was at work AND I was only dealing with 1 gallon of wort.  Here’s my process:

  1. Heat 1 gallon to 159 degrees.
  2. Add grain into bag (BIAB style) and stir grains.
  3. Confirm 155 degree mash, kill heat, and cover.
  4. During the 30 minute mash check temp every 5 minutes.
  5. If the temp gets too low turn heat back on.  (In my case the temp dipped the last 25 minutes in)
  6. After 30 minutes pull the grains, add DME, and heat until boil.
  7. When boil starts: Toss in hops and start the timer for 30 minutes.
  8. At FO toss the hot wort into the sanitized fermentor. (Brandon mentions for a more clear graf to cool the wort down)
  9. Add 4 gallons of juice to fermentor, making sure to sanitize the caps first.
  10. Take a gravity reading (mine came in at 1.062).
  11. Confirm temp of wort is at pitching temp.
  12. Sprinkle on US05, cover the fermentor.
  13. After 30 minutes agitate wort and ferment as normal.

All in all, this was a easy and quick “brew” day.  A lot of that had to do with the fact I was able to brew inside.  As a matter of fact I was even able to make lunch for my kids while I was mashing in.

I want to give a thanks out to Northern Brewer for posting this video for addition help and inspiration.

Details on this brew:

OG: 1.061 @79 degrees

FG: 1.010 @68 degrees

7.1% ABV


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