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Old 08-21-2013, 12:43 PM   #1
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Default Beer Brewer who wants to try a batch of hard cider

The title pretty much says it all.

I have been brewing beer for a little less than a year and am feeling the need to experiment and broaden my horizons a little.

Buddy at work asked if I would be interested in making a batch of hard cider.
He provides the freshly pressed apples and I provide some equipment and basic knowledge.

Here lies the problem. I have no idea how to make a cider.
I perused the forum and find several different options, some naturally fermented, some with pectic enzyme added (or other "stuff"), some with wine yeast, others with Notty, etc....

Can someone steer me in the right direction?

He is going to have the apple juice by tomorrow (Thurs) or Friday at the latest.

I have carboys, airlocks, and all essential racking and bottling stuff, but I just need a set in stone instructions.

Please and thank you.

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Old 08-21-2013, 12:53 PM   #2
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There is a lot of information on this site. Some of it is good and some of it is bad. Sorting the two when you don't have a lot of experience isn't easy. That being said, I brewed my first cider in 5 years two months ago after watching this video:

http://brewingtv.com/episodes/2012/9...ard-cider.html

The cider I made was simple - 5 gallon of store bought juice, wyeast 4766 (fermented in the recommended temp range), pectic enzyme, and campden tablets following fermentation to allow for back sweeting. It turned out phenomenal and was far easier than brewing beer.

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Old 08-21-2013, 12:56 PM   #3
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If you can keg, this is my own very simple recipe/method:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f32/simp...recipe-346373/

MC

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Old 08-21-2013, 01:42 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Misplaced_Canuck View Post
If you can keg, this is my own very simple recipe/method:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f32/simp...recipe-346373/

MC
So, I have browsed around and found other resources and I now have this question for ya MC.
Other resources recommend adding Campden tablets or Potassium Metabilsulfite prior to fermentation to kill off any natural yeast or bacteria.

So with your method, it would seem that the wild stuff is still in there?
Any problems with natural stuff interfering with the ferment?
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PRIMARY: Dirty Blonde
SECONDARY-Dry-hopping: Regal Pale Ale
SECONDARY-Dry-hopping: SNPA Clone
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BOTTLED / CONDITIONING: Bass Ale Clone
Conditioning and Drinking: MO-Fuggle SMaSH
Conditioning and Drinking: MO-Willamette
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Old 08-21-2013, 02:51 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brewkinger View Post
So, I have browsed around and found other resources and I now have this question for ya MC.
Other resources recommend adding Campden tablets or Potassium Metabilsulfite prior to fermentation to kill off any natural yeast or bacteria.

So with your method, it would seem that the wild stuff is still in there?
Any problems with natural stuff interfering with the ferment?
I haven't used fresh cider with my recipe. I think adding campden would be fine, provided that you let it sit the recommended amount of time.

MC
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Old 08-21-2013, 04:01 PM   #6
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Here are a couple good threads to check out which may give you some good ideas:

Man, I Love Apfelwein
Better Than Apfelwein
Brandon O's Graf <--- (my personal favorite)

I've had good luck using Hefe yeast or neutral ale yeasts like Nottingham... never cared as much for my ciders that used wine or champagne yeast. I've used both pressed ciders and grocery-store Tree Top juice, both are good, but definitely produce different flavors in the end.

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Old 08-23-2013, 01:33 AM   #7
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How much Campden per gallon?

How much pectic enzyme (if we use it)?

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PRIMARY: Dirty Blonde
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SECONDARY-Dry-hopping: SNPA Clone
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BOTTLED / CONDITIONING: Bass Ale Clone
Conditioning and Drinking: MO-Fuggle SMaSH
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Old 08-29-2013, 02:55 PM   #8
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UPDATE:

5 gallons of apple-pear cider (treated with potassium metabisulfite) in carboy 8/24.

Pectic enzyme added 12 hours later

US-05 pitched on top 24 hours later.

VERY LITTLE visible evidence of fermentation, other than a 1" ring of white foam that is situated about 2 inches in from the edge of the carboy.

65 degrees in a swamp cooler

Things that I think might have been done differently:
Brain farted and did not aerate the must before adding yeast. I am thinking that since it had been sitting for roughly 36 hours in the carboy, so oxygen level was most likely low.

First time using US-05, so I am thinking that it might be a slower, less vigorous ferment (I am used to Notty)

Just gonna let it ride for a couple of weeks and then check gravity.

Thoughts??

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SECONDARY-Dry-hopping: SNPA Clone
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BOTTLED / CONDITIONING: Bass Ale Clone
Conditioning and Drinking: MO-Fuggle SMaSH
Conditioning and Drinking: MO-Willamette
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Old 08-29-2013, 03:31 PM   #9
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All of my ciders have had fairly mild fermentations, except for when I used Hefe yeast (that one was rather violent). I seem to remember my US-05 batch being tame.

I don't know if what you're seeing is due to the lack of oxygenation or just characteristic to the cider. Likely a bit of both. I would ride it out and check back in a few weeks, as you said. Let us know the results.

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Old 08-29-2013, 04:15 PM   #10
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I do not think that it is a characteristic of the cider, only because the other 10 gallons that we made are at his house.
He pitched Red Star wine yeast in one and Lalvin EC-1118 in the other and both of them erupted right out into the 1" blowoff hose.
Granted, both were 5 gal batches IN a 5 gal carboy, which I told him he needed the blowoff for that exact reason.
Are wine yeasts generally more vigorous than ale yeasts?

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PRIMARY: Dirty Blonde
SECONDARY-Dry-hopping: Regal Pale Ale
SECONDARY-Dry-hopping: SNPA Clone
SECONDARY: Unknown Ale (Partigyle from RPA and SNPA)
BOTTLED / CONDITIONING: Bass Ale Clone
Conditioning and Drinking: MO-Fuggle SMaSH
Conditioning and Drinking: MO-Willamette
Do not mistake my kindness for weakness. I am kind to everyone, but when someone is unkind to me, weak is not what you will remember about me.
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