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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Cider Forum > First Cider Going Well
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Old 12-17-2011, 09:12 PM   #1
chief764
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Default First Cider Going Well

I started my first cider last weekend using 5 gallons of Ziegler's pasteurized cider and a packet of S-04. The juice had an OG of 1.052. I simply dumped the juice into a sanitized plastic fermenter and added the rehydrated yeast. I've checked the gravity twice this week and despite a non-bubbling airlock, the SG is currently 1.018. It's proceeding just like everyone on the board said it would.

I tasted it this morning and I gotta tell ya it's delicious! It seems a tad sweet so I'm going to let it go a couple of more days and check it again.

I've read the posts and it seems there's two schools of thought on when to keg. I can either stop fermentaion with potassium sorbate when I find the taste to my liking, or I can let it ferment out and then backsweeten. Since its my first attempt, I'm torn. If this was your batch what would you do?

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Old 12-17-2011, 10:50 PM   #2
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Potassium sorbate WILL NOT stop fermentation. Sorbate keeps yeast from reproducing. An active fermentation contains billions of yeast cells. Keeping them from reproducing has minimal impact. You can stop fermentation by chilling the cider, which will make the yeast dormant.

Also, Zeigler's Cider in my neck of the woods contains sorbate, which would've made fermentation difficult, if not impossible. Yours didn't contain sorbate?

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Old 12-18-2011, 01:04 PM   #3
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They were one-gallon jugs of Zeigler's Old Fashioned Apple Cider I picked up at a Navy commissary. The ingredients simply state "U.S. Apples." The label also states there are no preservatives. I saw the same brand at another grocery store the next day that did have preservatives so looks like I stumbled onto a good find. Better get more before they're gone.

I decided to cold crash the cider once it reaches ~1.015 then keg it after a couple of days. Can't wait!

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Old 12-18-2011, 04:59 PM   #4
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As long as the cold crashed cider is not warmed up then the fermentation will not continue. But by kegging you have allowed yourself adequate space for a short period of fermentation.

I remember cold crashing my first few batches in my buddy's fridge in college. Although their fridge was at 40 degrees, the plastic containers still build up enough pressure that they hissed after 12 hours.

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Old 12-20-2011, 04:12 PM   #5
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I am brewing my second 5 gallon batch of cider as well using Mott's. I am still new to brewing and I am curious to what LME you used? I just added two pounds of brown sugar which I added after warming up in 2 gallons a juice to dissolve it. Then I just pitched the yeast and it is now 3 days in (1/ sec in the airlock). My basement smells of sulfer and starting to stink up the house. I would like to try the malt when I make my next batch so I am curious. Not sure it will change the smell but I think it would make the flavor different.

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Old 12-25-2011, 07:20 AM   #6
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No LME, just juice and yeast. Been drinking it for a week now and it's great.

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