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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Cider Forum > A Few Questions Before My First Cider
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Old 01-27-2012, 11:53 PM   #1
pmd5700
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Default A Few Questions Before My First Cider

I'm getting ready to attempt my first hard cider. I have a 1 gallon glass jug, a #6 stopper, an airlock and 1 gallon of 100% apple juice (no preservatives). I have two questions.

1) I see many people just mentioning "add the yeast" but the package (Nottingham) mentions re-hydrating the yeast. Should I re-hydrate it or just add it in directly from the package?

2) I've read about adding some frozen apple juice concentrate to "boost" the flavor some. Do I add that while it's still frozen, or should I thaw it out?

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Old 01-28-2012, 12:02 AM   #2
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There is no problem pitching the yeast dry, I do it all the time. The apple juice concentrate is easier to pore in to the juice if thawed.

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Old 01-28-2012, 12:06 AM   #3
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Thaw it out, it will be easier to work with and won't stress the yeast.

You don't HAVE to hydrate it, but It won't hurt. It will help it start faster. Boil some water and let 1/2cup-1 cup cool until it feels like your body temperature and sprinkle the yeast on top and let hydrate for 10 minutes or so. Then add to your primary.

Take gravity readings with a hydrometer at the beginning.

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Old 01-28-2012, 12:12 AM   #4
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I rehydrate my Nottingham before use, so I can't say which way works better. I've also never made a 1 gallon batch. I would think you would be fine just pitching a couple of grams per gallon.

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Old 01-28-2012, 12:54 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pickled_Pepper
I rehydrate my Nottingham before use, so I can't say which way works better. I've also never made a 1 gallon batch. I would think you would be fine just pitching a couple of grams per gallon.
I learned from CvilleKevin that 1/3 of a packet of Notty is more than enough for a gallon batch.

1 gallon batches are all I have made. Notty is the only yeast I use. I have rehydrated and poured in dry...both work just as well. To me, what everyone has stated over and over again is the quality of juice you use IMO. I have used store bought juice w/o preservatives, juice from concentrate w/o preserv and juice from a local orchard that was UV pasteurized. In my gallon batches, the one from the orchard started bubbling frantically in less than one hour. The rest took almost twice as long.

The orchard juice seemed to ferment faster as well, but it also had more of a tart, acidy taste that the others didn't.
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Old 01-28-2012, 01:27 AM   #6
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Thanks for the quick responses. One more quick question.

Can I leave the cider on the counter while it ferments, or do I need to shield it from light?

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Old 01-28-2012, 02:11 AM   #7
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I ferment in a second bathroom and it's always dark. When I move to secondary I store in my basement area and wrap them in a towel. I don't know if light has an adverse effect on ciders or not, but out of habit I cover them up.

Where ever you choose to keep the vessel, I'd suggest fermenting the nottingham (and aging) around 60-62ºF if you can. It's rated up into the low 70s but lower seems to work a lot better for me.

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Old 01-28-2012, 04:29 AM   #8
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the general practice is to cover to protect the colors. When doing wine and such not keeping it in the dark will cause reds and blushes to turn brown. Not as big of a deal with cider, but it is still good practice to keep it in the dark.

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Old 01-28-2012, 11:18 PM   #9
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I thawed the concentrate to room temperature, added some of the juice and put the yeast in that mixture. That made it easier to get into the jug. 12 hours later, there is noticeable fermentation. Thanks for the help!

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