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Old 09-19-2013, 03:39 AM   #1
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Default Easy Clarifying Options/Techniques?

Good Evening,

Although it doesn't bother me all that much, I would like to find an easy way to clarify my cider when I finish fermenting it. I do the apple juice in a carboy with some corn sugar, Lalvin EC-1118 and some granulated yeast nutrient made from food grade urea. It is a very vigorous fermentation and I have been going on average 10 days until I want to pull it and sample the goods.

I have heard of people using gelatin, isinglass, and irish moss to their brew to clear it up. Mine has always looked a yellowish-beige, and I'd like to clear this lot before bottling as I am looking to make a strong, carbonated cider that is probably going to border on apfelwein. I have heard that gelatin (knox) can gel your product, isinglass is difficult to get right, and I am not very familiar with Irish moss.

Is there any particular way or method I could use to clear my 5 gal carboy with minimal difficulty? I do have 2 packets of cold isinglass, but I am afraid to ruin the goodies. Thanks!

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Old 09-19-2013, 12:23 PM   #2
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I've had good luck with the icinglass and gelatin in both wines and beer. But my ciders I usually just cold crash for a few days after they reach final gravity. It drops the yeast well. I do use ale yeast though. I didn't like the flavors the ec-1118 gave to the cider. Took a long time to condition, and taste good using the wine yeast.

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Old 09-20-2013, 11:33 PM   #3
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Thanks, I am just going to freeze the plastic containers. As for the carboy, I will check with hydrometer, add a little more juice off a fresh bottle if necessary, and bottle with priming sugar and cork em.

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Old 09-21-2013, 11:48 AM   #4
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Quote:
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Thanks, I am just going to freeze the plastic containers. As for the carboy, I will check with hydrometer, add a little more juice off a fresh bottle if necessary, and bottle with priming sugar and cork em.
When you say cork em, you're using champagne bottles right? I ask only because you're priming then bottling. Don't want you to end up with a disaster on your hands (or your face for that matter).
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Old 09-21-2013, 12:10 PM   #5
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I have to agree with TexasWine, if you are going to carbonate it, use champagne bottles. If you plan on giving it a light carbonation like beer, you may be able to get away with beer bottles.

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Old 09-23-2013, 12:59 AM   #6
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I'll be using Champagne bottles at the end stage, yes. I also have a few half gallon bottles as well.

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Old 09-23-2013, 05:38 AM   #7
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Im guessing that you're not really interested in bulk aging it for a while then? My experience with cider making is that they have all become absolutely crystal clear over a period of about 4+ months. I have 2 ciders which are now at about 8 months and at last racking neither of them had any sediment at all. I did once use gelatin to clear a cider when I was new to it, and it was a sight to behold, like one of those little x-mas snow domes! In about 20 seconds after tipping it in the whole keg began to 'snow'. the only problem was that everything it dropped out was very light and fluffy on the bottom and the slightest movement stirred it back up.

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Old 09-23-2013, 07:30 AM   #8
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Have you added any pectinase yet? WVMJ

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Old 09-24-2013, 06:47 PM   #9
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Im guessing that you're not really interested in bulk aging it for a while then? My experience with cider making is that they have all become absolutely crystal clear over a period of about 4+ months. I have 2 ciders which are now at about 8 months and at last racking neither of them had any sediment at all. I did once use gelatin to clear a cider when I was new to it, and it was a sight to behold, like one of those little x-mas snow domes! In about 20 seconds after tipping it in the whole keg began to 'snow'. the only problem was that everything it dropped out was very light and fluffy on the bottom and the slightest movement stirred it back up.
After some consideration, I kept the carboy to ferment long term and started a second this morning. People have told me that a few months makes a world of difference as opposed to 1 week quick cider. And the reason you described regarding gelatin is why I am holding back at the moment until I know exactly what I am doing.
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Old 09-24-2013, 06:52 PM   #10
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Have you added any pectinase yet? WVMJ
I've never used Pectinase but apparently it is widely used by cider-makers. B&G has some for $2.25, might have to make a run some time...
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