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Old 12-14-2010, 01:39 PM   #1
empathy
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Default Extremely Intoxicating Cider

Hi forum! . This is a cozy little corner of the web is it not? So many knowledgeable and warm hearted folks on here (and warm bodies from all that homebrew). Not to mention the amount of info on here is staggering, anyways nice to meet you all and how do you do?

So I brewed up some cider with Baker's yeast. Yes I know, hooch right? Well, the only thing that would make it hooch is the yeast. As everything else was professional, including the setup and apple juice. So, if you consider a batch to be hooch just because of the yeast, then I think it is a situation of misguidance.

Anywho. Off topic there, excuse me. This cider is very intoxicating. The hydrometer is indicating 11% ABV. Although it feels more like 50 proof. For example, I will have a standard wine glass worth of this stuff (5 ounces) and feel like I drank a can of steel reserve. The intoxication is different to, and I like it better.

Could it have something to do with the temperature I brewed this at? The fermenter was sitting on a heating pad on the low setting in a constant 74 degree environment. So, I would imagine the temperature in the fermenter got up to about 85 - 87 degrees.

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Old 12-14-2010, 02:10 PM   #2
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wow, fine 1st post.... Luddites we are!

Why would you think no one ferments using bread yeast? It's the most common yeast used for fermenting stuff besides pure wild yeast....... Most people here have tried it out.... Many use it... Why? Almost everyone has nearly immediate access to the stuff..... A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush...

Personally, I don't like making bread yeast cider - but for totally different reasons.... I had trouble with cider gysers every time I degassed - it would kick back over and ferment like crazy.... until it was drop-dead bone dry.... and the bread yeast seemed to eat up every bit of everything in the apple juice - I started with beautiful, rich, golden fresh pressed juice with really nice flavor and it left me a crystal clear white watery cider with no flavor at all.... It literally looks like mineral water!

Next question - How much sugar did you add? 11% ABV is pretty high - it's almost 2x the normal sugar Cider would have had in it......

When you push the alcohol up that high, it starts generating "Fusel" alcohols - they taste "Hot" and paint thinner/nail polish remover-y.... As such, it gets called "Rocket fuel" because that's what it tastes like.....

Best thing to do at this point is to let it age out..... Eventually, the Rocket Fuel flavor will mellow out and it will start tasting pretty good.... Give it 6-months and try it again...

Thanks

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Old 12-14-2010, 02:40 PM   #3
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Hi truckjohn!

Well, it was my understanding from my brewing buddies that baker's yeast is exclusive to prisons, and I got a lot of flak from them about my cider. I'm glad to see this is not the case .

Hmm, maybe it's my juice or my obscure palette, but I think this particular brew I landed upon tastes terrific. Oh no, I can see the comments now LOL. I used 2.25 pounds of sugar in 3 gallons of 31 grams of sugar (per 8 oz) of apple juice. So that totals around 5.5 pounds of sugar if you counted the sugar in the juice. Perhaps, I will let it age a bit like you said.

What you are saying is extremely interesting. I was under the impression that these fusel alcohols were not psychologically active. Although, I must admit I did brief research on them.

Isopropyl alcohol and amyl alcohol seem to be the culprites from a quick google search I did here. Amyl alcohol being particularly interesting with a potency 20x that of alcohol and the taste peppermint.

Is anyone aware of a yeast strain known for producing a ratio of 10:1< Amyl alcohol? With the other fusel alcohols being the 1.

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Old 12-14-2010, 06:17 PM   #4
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Sounds like you need to start making Mead....

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Old 12-15-2010, 02:35 PM   #5
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well, I would probably call your cider hooch, but not because of bread yeast, but instead because of your ferm temps

85F is waaay too hot, it smells like rocket fuel from all the fusel alcohols, which will give you a wicked hangover if you drink too much - probably why it feels like you drank a bottle of steel reserve
also, while fusels will degrade with time, it is an extremely slow process, much longer than 6mos if the cider is loaded full of them which it sounds, think more in the 2yrs+

Next time around, try just fermenting some apple juice sans sugar, and keep it much cooler, it will be much more drinkable, you could even stick with the bread yeast if you wanted but I would suggest either fermenting it wild or picking up a packet of a neutral ale yeast like nottingham

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Old 12-16-2010, 05:49 AM   #6
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I agree that your fermentation temp was a little high, I have a batch of cider made from musselman's cider + 3 lbs of clover honey OG 1.063 using S-04 at 65F or so.
In four days it went down to a SG 1.020 so there is no need for high temps.
Time will heal the wounds though, a rule of thumb mention here before is 5% = 3 months. Every percentage point above adds a month in ageing to allow everything to blend and the cider flavor to come back out.

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Old 12-17-2010, 02:55 AM   #7
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It seems to me that high ferment temps are the reason. I had a home pressed batch fermenting when a hot spell hit and the cider smelled/tasted horrible and strongly of sulfur. It made me feel buzzed with only a small glass of it as well I racked and let it sit for another 6 weeks. I then bottled the cider, priming with a half teaspoon of dark brown sugar. 3 weeks after bottling I tried it and was pleasantly surprised. Still a bit green tasting but on it's way to being enjoyable. The fast onset of the buzz was gone as well. Have faith in time.

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Old 12-17-2010, 03:11 AM   #8
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Yeah high temps...why did you put it on a heating pad? The only thing I've ever fermented on a heating pad was a Saison.

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Old 12-17-2010, 03:11 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BoomerCreek View Post
The fast onset of the buzz was gone as well. Have faith in time.
For obvious reasons, the stomach has to separate the alcohol molecule from the flavor molecule before the alcohol can enter the blood stream. When a wine is young and the flavors haven't merged, the alcohol molecule hasn't bound with a flavor molecule yet, and enters through the stomach faster. 1 step faster. On the flip side, if the flavors haven't merged then it will have a hot and burning taste to it which straingly reminds me of having too much CO2 left over. I wonder if the presents of large amounts of CO2 could keep the flavors from merging or keep the alcohol from merging with the flavor.
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Old 12-17-2010, 11:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by campfirewine View Post
for obvious reasons, the stomach has to separate the alcohol molecule from the flavor molecule before the alcohol can enter the blood stream. When a wine is young and the flavors haven't merged, the alcohol molecule hasn't bound with a flavor molecule yet, and enters through the stomach faster. 1 step faster. On the flip side, if the flavors haven't merged then it will have a hot and burning taste to it which straingly reminds me of having too much co2 left over. I wonder if the presents of large amounts of co2 could keep the flavors from merging or keep the alcohol from merging with the flavor.
what?
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