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Old 02-17-2005, 03:36 AM   #1
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Default Cheatin cider...

I had an extra packet of Ale yeast, and nothing to ferment with it.... so I went and bought 6 gallons of apple juice and mixed 'em all together. I'm hoping to come out with a drink like Hornsby's or Strong Bow... but it smells too yeasty right now.

But anyhow... is this a cheating way of making cider? or is there more to it than just apple juice? I'm just curious... seems like a waste of time to mash a bunch of apples when you can go the the store and buy a bunch of apple juice for under $10.

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Old 02-17-2005, 04:10 AM   #2
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I'm not sure, but I think the difference between apple juice and cider has to do with the juice being filtered...maybe pasteurized...I dunno, but there is a difference. Now, if you bought 6 gallons of cider, that'd be different, but you want natural, unpasteurized. Again....I'm not sure.

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Old 02-17-2005, 04:28 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rightwingnut
I'm not sure, but I think the difference between apple juice and cider has to do with the juice being filtered...maybe pasteurized...I dunno, but there is a difference. Now, if you bought 6 gallons of cider, that'd be different, but you want natural, unpasteurized. Again....I'm not sure.
Yea I think I've heard the same thing, organic unpasteurized cider is the way to go. I would guess that if you start with a couple cartons of apple juice from the store, you'll end up with something like those EZ caps would make to drink, as someone has suggested on another thread.
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Old 02-18-2005, 02:31 PM   #4
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Default Juice / Cider

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Originally Posted by OSUmoney83
Yea I think I've heard the same thing, organic unpasteurized cider is the way to go. I would guess that if you start with a couple cartons of apple juice from the store, you'll end up with something like those EZ caps would make to drink, as someone has suggested on another thread.
In the US, apple juice and apple cider are interchangable with regard to package labeling. Unfermented juice from apples will have different labels (Juice/cider) from different manufacturers in different parts of the country.

The use of pasteurized juice/cider from the store can produce an excellent hard cider. Martinelli's pasteurized apple juice with no preservatives makes an excellent hard cider. This is a product of California (Watsonville, on Monterey Bay). I have also used other store bought cider/juice to make good hard cider. the only thing to remember is that NO PRESERVATIVES can be added. The added preservatives can stop the yeast added from multiplying and making alcohol.

Using unpasteurized apple juice is also great. just remember that the natural yeast present on the apple may cause some unintended flavors in the fermented hard cider. The other option is to let the natural yeast take its course. This can be problematic, in that the natural yeast is slower to start (it has to reproduce a lot more) and leaves time for bacterial infection of the sweet juice. Many home cider makers (as well as wine makers) use camdem tablets to stop the natural (wild) yeast prior to pitching a pure strain of commercial yeast. I have used White Labs WLP 775 English cider yeast with excellent results.

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Old 02-18-2005, 03:52 PM   #5
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What he said...no preservatives is key. Also, see other threads in this very forum discussing making hard cider out of nothing but apples and yeast. I'd use a stronger yeast than ale yeast, but hey...

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Old 02-20-2005, 06:09 PM   #6
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LOL, I think my cheatin' cider batch might be botched. It smells like a sulphur fart coming out of the airlock. And its fermenting so fast, my whole kitchen smells like a nasty fart. I had to open all the windows to clear that smell out of there, now my place is a chilly 55°. I'll let her finish fermenting and see how it tastes.

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Old 02-21-2005, 01:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seven77
LOL, I think my cheatin' cider batch might be botched. It smells like a sulphur fart coming out of the airlock. And its fermenting so fast, my whole kitchen smells like a nasty fart. I had to open all the windows to clear that smell out of there, now my place is a chilly 55°. I'll let her finish fermenting and see how it tastes.
Blame the dog........lol!!!
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Old 02-22-2005, 08:10 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seven77
LOL, I think my cheatin' cider batch might be botched. It smells like a sulphur fart coming out of the airlock. And its fermenting so fast, my whole kitchen smells like a nasty fart. I had to open all the windows to clear that smell out of there, now my place is a chilly 55°. I'll let her finish fermenting and see how it tastes.
The sulfer smell is normal for cider when using most wine yeasts. The lower temperatures are ok, but try to keep the temperature constant for best results.
If you can, take a specific gravity reading to see how far your cider has fermented. If it is around 1.010 you are ready to move (rack) the cider to a secondary fermentor. This will help the cider clear.

Keep the list informed as to how the cider is doing!

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Old 02-26-2005, 02:02 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Arizona Dave
Keep the list informed as to how the cider is doing!

OK, will do.

I did have another question though. It's about how much priming sugar to use. Normally, when brewing beer, the recipe called for between 4 - 4.5 ounces of corn sugar. Every recipe I've used was for 5 gallons though, and my cheatin' cider batch is 6 gallons. Would I use the same ratio? I was going to use 5 2/5 oz of corn sugar, as that's the same ratio as 4.5 oz in 5 gallons.

Overall, I want it highly carbonated... like a soda pop... yet not have any exploded bottles.
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Old 02-26-2005, 10:49 AM   #10
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I too brew in 6 Gal batches (Beer, Cider and Mead). The same ratio holds true. For your priming sugar, I would use a little more in the range of 5.0 to 5.3 ounces. To have really sparkling cider, try using 5.75 oz of corn sugar. For easy priming, I normally will disolve the sugar in some apple juice (a pint or less), bring it to a boil and then pitch into my bottling bucket. Be sure to mix well, as the specific gravity difference will have the sugar sitting on the bottom if you don't stir it up well.

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