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Old 10-18-2012, 05:07 PM   #1
kevinstan
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Default First Time Brewer - Which method ?

I am going to buy a 1 gallon jug of organic apple juice from my local grocery store. Here is my plan - let me know if this will work for my first time brew:

1 gallon jug of organic apple juice
1 1/2 cups of dark brown sugar
1 full pack of yeast (brewers yeast not bakers yeast)

The plan is to open the apple juice and remove about 2 cups of the juice. Then add the brown sugar (plain without melting it just dropping into the juice) - then instantly pitching the yeast and sealing it with an airlock.

A few questions

1. Will this work and be good for a minimal hard cider brew
2. Do I need to alter anything
3. Should I melt the sugar in some juice then add it to the jug before adding yeast?
4. Any suggestions on specific brewers yeast ? Montrachet ? Or D47 ? Or Ale yeast ?

I plan on back sweetening with the saved juice that I remove at the first. Will I have to stop the fermentation process before back sweetening ?

Any suggestions will greatly help. This is my first attempt at a very simple hard cider. I don't want to over complicate it and I want to be successful. I had read so much on here already and seen so many YouTube videos that my head is clogged up from over thinking it.

I want to keep it simple. Thanks to everyone in advance!

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Old 10-18-2012, 05:25 PM   #2
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Welcome to the addiction!

1. Sounds excellent!
2. You really don't need a full packet of yeast, but over pitching isn't a bad thing... Sometimes I wish I had more. Also while at the brew shop I'd pick up some Yeast Nutrient. Give it a little bit (teaspoon) at the beginning and then a bit more if you are "lucky" enough to get Rhino Farts.
3. I'd add the brown sugar and then shake it really well till the sugar goes into solution. You don't need to worry about super saturation problems (the need to warm up the cider / sugar mixture) That amount of sugar will go into solution easily.
4. I really like Nottingham Ale Yeast. Has been a great yeast for me. Hasn't created the fusel flavor and your ABV is within the limits of Nottingham. Ferment it slow (roughly 60 degrees) and you'll have a stellar drink at the end.

It is super simple. Relax. Don't Worry. Have A Home Brew.

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Old 10-18-2012, 05:50 PM   #3
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Should I add more brown sugar than the planned cup and a half ? Or even white and brown sugar mix ? Or is 1 1/2 cups brown sugar enough ?

And would 1/2 pack of yeast be enough ?

Also last question, how long should I expect to ferment ? Just a rough estimate ?

Thanks !

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Old 10-18-2012, 09:03 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevinstan
Should I add more brown sugar than the planned cup and a half ? Or even white and brown sugar mix ? Or is 1 1/2 cups brown sugar enough ?

And would 1/2 pack of yeast be enough ?

Also last question, how long should I expect to ferment ? Just a rough estimate ?

Thanks !
What yeast are you using? Most packets of yeast are good for 5 gallons, so a half packet is more than enough.

Adding more sugar increases your potential alcohol content, so adding more is up to you. Either sugar is fine, but I personally like the brown sugar flavor.

You could technically drink it a few days after fermentation starts (see the 5 day sweet country cider recipe in the recioe section). I've done this a few times now with 1 gallon batches. I let it ferment for a week or 2, then cold crash in the fridge for a day or 2, then drink until its gone.
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Old 10-18-2012, 09:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple_Jacker View Post
What yeast are you using? Most packets of yeast are good for 5 gallons, so a half packet is more than enough.

Adding more sugar increases your potential alcohol content, so adding more is up to you. Either sugar is fine, but I personally like the brown sugar flavor.

You could technically drink it a few days after fermentation starts (see the 5 day sweet country cider recipe in the recioe section). I've done this a few times now with 1 gallon batches. I let it ferment for a week or 2, then cold crash in the fridge for a day or 2, then drink until its gone.
This is what I did the first few batches of cider I made. It was great. If you stop it while it's in full swing and drop the yeast out, you can still have some carbonation and sweetness left over.
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Old 10-18-2012, 09:33 PM   #6
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I was thinking of using the nauttingham ale yeast. I also considered a few others like montrechet, d47, and 1118.

So another question: I should be ok letting it bubble and brew for about a week or two then cold crashing and drinking. My question is: do I rack it before cold crashing and drinking ?

Also - I know there are already a million posts on here about it, but going on the specific way I am brewing this up - is it possible to bottle it in grolsch style swing top bottles ? And if so, what should I do to make sure I'm not making bombs?

Thanks again everyone for all the help.

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Old 10-18-2012, 11:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevinstan
I was thinking of using the nauttingham ale yeast. I also considered a few others like montrechet, d47, and 1118.

So another question: I should be ok letting it bubble and brew for about a week or two then cold crashing and drinking. My question is: do I rack it before cold crashing and drinking ?

Also - I know there are already a million posts on here about it, but going on the specific way I am brewing this up - is it possible to bottle it in grolsch style swing top bottles ? And if so, what should I do to make sure I'm not making bombs?

Thanks again everyone for all the help.
I don't usually worry about racking it before drinking after cold crashing...I drink it fast enough.

I heard grolsch bottles are great as long as the rubber seal is good. And I've heard they allow excess CO2 to escape but I can't confirm that.
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Old 10-19-2012, 12:39 AM   #8
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So even from the normal fermentation is there not enough sediment to worry about? Or does the cold crashing have something to do with it ?

Or you just drink through it?

Also, can anyone confirm about the grolsch swing top bottles for bottling slightly carbonated cider ?

Also, does anyone use any Pectic Enzyme for clarification purposes on this ?

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Old 10-19-2012, 02:33 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevinstan
So even from the normal fermentation is there not enough sediment to worry about? Or does the cold crashing have something to do with it ?

Or you just drink through it?

Also, can anyone confirm about the grolsch swing top bottles for bottling slightly carbonated cider ?

Also, does anyone use any Pectic Enzyme for clarification purposes on this ?
The cold crashing drops the yeast and most other solids out of suspension. I drink as much as I can without having to drink the lees.
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Old 10-19-2012, 03:07 AM   #10
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Having never done a fruit juice before, I wonder if this is going to leave enough room to prevent it from making a big mess bubbling over.

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