Tips for Making the Perfect Hard Seltzer

Category : Technical
Date : August 28, 2020
Author : White Labs Technical Team
Love it or hate it, the hard seltzer market is growing. This beverage requires a little more crafting than just sugar, water, and yeast. Below we’ve provided some tips and tricks on making a hard seltzer that tastes great and fits your brand. 

Feed Your Yeast 

In beer production, we rely on malt to provide many of the key amino acids, minerals, and vitamins yeast need to ferment sugar to alcohol. With most seltzer sugar bases, the level of nutrients available for yeast are little to none so we need to supplement with specific nutrition. Our SeltzerMax Yeast Nutrient has been specifically formulated to help you make a clear, clean, and fully attenuated seltzer.

Optimize the Aroma 

Typically craft hard seltzers have a white wine-like aroma due to fermentation byproducts and the inability to filter the product. If you’re struggling with sulfur like aromas, it’s typically an indicator that you need more or the correct yeast nutrient. Adding flavorings and fruit to the seltzer can round out the aroma and tastes. 

Yeast Choice Matters 

We recommend using liquid yeast, like our classic WLP001 California Ale Yeast, in combination with a yeast seltzer specific yeast nutrient to maximize the flavors and aromas. Additionally, Pinnacle G can be used in combination with a yeast nutrient. 

Get it Clear 

We recommend using traditional finings agents for most fermentations. If you are still struggling with unwanted haze, filtration may be necessary. We have seen a correlation between lower nutrient levels and higher amounts of haze, which is likely a result of poor yeast health causing poor flocculation.