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Old 05-10-2008, 03:16 PM   #1
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Default My Apfelwein won't stop bubbling

I started my first batch of apfelwein on march 19, 7 weeks and 3 days ago. I followed the recipe to a t, using montrachet yeast.

Ferment started within 18 hours of pitching my yeast with the characteristic stream of tiny bubbles coming up to the top of the liquid in the carboy. The bubbling has continued since then, slowly decreasing in rate. What I am concerned about, is the fact that the bubbling is still going at a slow but steady rate as I type this. I'm not sure how to describe the rate of this bubbling, but it is steady enough to keep a single layer of tiny bubbles at the top.

However, I have not seen the airlock bubble in weeks (not that I watch it 24 hours a day) and for at least a week, there has been negative pressure on the vodka in the airlock. There has been no suck back, but it has stayed at a negative pressure constantly, as far as I can tell, and I check it 2-3 times a day usually.

I don't understand what is going on, shouldn't my Apfelwein be done by now? It has cleared up as the recipe said it would and I have a nice little layer of yeast on the bottom. The only thing that looks weird to me is that I have a ring of yeast clinging to the glass carboy at the point about 2 inches from the bottom, where the carboy tapers in, but this may be a normal result of using a 5 gallon carboy, because this is the first thing I have used one for.

I need to bottle by next thursday, as I am going away for the summer, but I obviously don't want to bottle it while its still bubbling.

Do you guys have any answers/advice for me?

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Old 05-10-2008, 03:30 PM   #2
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Have you taken a hydrometer reading?

I've only made two batches, but they both used montrachet, and they both finished below 1.000. I do remember that there were tiny, champagne like bubbles rising to the surface and no airlock activity.

But the hydrometer doesn't lie (unless you have a temperature or calibration issue). I'm not an expert, but I'd say if the gravity is below one, it's safe to bottle.

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Old 05-10-2008, 03:37 PM   #3
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Take a gravity reading NOW!
Take another in a few days. If they are the same, Bottle away!

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Old 05-10-2008, 04:17 PM   #4
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Just took a reading, 1.000-1.001, so I guess its done. I assume that if gravity hasn't made it below 1 yet its not ever going to eh? Hydrometer sample tastes like champagne, so I guess that's good (right?). But can anyone explain to me why I've got the bubbles still happening? I moved the Carboy out from under the table it was sitting under, and the bubble rate increased and the layer at the top got bigger.

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Old 05-10-2008, 04:25 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by html034 View Post
Just took a reading, 1.000-1.001, so I guess its done. I assume that if gravity hasn't made it below 1 yet its not ever going to eh? Hydrometer sample tastes like champagne, so I guess that's good (right?). But can anyone explain to me why I've got the bubbles still happening? I moved the Carboy out from under the table it was sitting under, and the bubble rate increased and the layer at the top got bigger.
Your Yeast cake has just enough nummies to munch on to keep making a bubble or 2. The movement always increases the gasoff rate.
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