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Old 12-04-2013, 05:04 PM   #1
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Default Adding More Sugar After Fermentation

I have a another good couple weeks before my cider keg will be free (gotta finish what's in there) so wondering if I pop in a couple more pounds of brown sugar into the fermentor it will increase the ABV a bit more? Been 2 weeks since I checked but last time I did it was at 11%. Fermentation has completely finished (been there for about 4 weeks) so not sure if it will work anyhow but just curious, not sure if I want to make it any stronger yet.

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Old 12-04-2013, 10:48 PM   #2
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It will restart fermentation (assuming your yeast can handle the ABV)

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Old 12-04-2013, 10:59 PM   #3
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At 11% I'm not sure how much higher you really want it if you want it drunk like a cider(beer) vs a wine.

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Old 12-04-2013, 11:12 PM   #4
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what yeast did you use? if you used a beer yeast, you're probably at the yeast's limit. after 4 weeks in an 11% abv environment, a lot of yeast (even ones with a higher tolerance) will have given up and gone dormant.

if you do this, i'd start by adding a small amount of sugar - maybe a quarter or half a pound - and make sure that ferments out. sounds like you have enough time to do a quick test, evaluate, then add more sugar if needed.

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Old 12-05-2013, 12:52 AM   #5
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what yeast did you use? if you used a beer yeast, you're probably at the yeast's limit. after 4 weeks in an 11% abv environment, a lot of yeast (even ones with a higher tolerance) will have given up and gone dormant.

if you do this, i'd start by adding a small amount of sugar - maybe a quarter or half a pound - and make sure that ferments out. sounds like you have enough time to do a quick test, evaluate, then add more sugar if needed.
I used an ale yeast. I'll dump a little in and see, want to back sweeten it anyhow, so if I don't get anything more at least it will be a little sweeter ha...
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Old 12-05-2013, 02:40 AM   #6
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want to back sweeten it anyhow
perfect! you don't have to worry about the sugar not being fermented... you want some sugar in there anyways
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What hops should I grow? Hop grower's comparison table. Looking for cheap honey?

Drinking: a farmhouse with ECY08 & brett blend, wet-hopped harvest ale x 2, second runnings dark ale with vanilla
Fermenting: (nothing active)
Aging: imperial chocolate stout, sour cherry mead, oud bruin & a few other sours, acerglyn, a BDSA
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Old 12-05-2013, 03:29 AM   #7
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So if I understand correctly the yeast will eventually be played out? And not be able to do any more either by being killed off by the alcohol level or by just being spent.

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Old 12-05-2013, 02:26 PM   #8
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So if I understand correctly the yeast will eventually be played out? And not be able to do any more either by being killed off by the alcohol level or by just being spent.
yes, alcohol is toxic to yeast. above a certain concentration yeast can't tolerate it. i'm unsure if it kills them or just makes them go dormant. different yeasts have different tolerances. many (but not all) beer yeasts crap out around 12%, champagne yeast is typically rated to 18%, etc. yeast health plays a big role: a healthy yeast can often go a little above its rated tolerance, a stressed yeast might not make it all the way and crap out early.
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What hops should I grow? Hop grower's comparison table. Looking for cheap honey?

Drinking: a farmhouse with ECY08 & brett blend, wet-hopped harvest ale x 2, second runnings dark ale with vanilla
Fermenting: (nothing active)
Aging: imperial chocolate stout, sour cherry mead, oud bruin & a few other sours, acerglyn, a BDSA
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Old 12-05-2013, 08:48 PM   #9
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Thanks for the explanation, I do appreciate it.

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