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-   -   first time cider fermenting question (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f32/first-time-cider-fermenting-question-39247/)

shmoeusn 09-19-2007 11:47 PM

first time cider fermenting question
well, it's been 8 days since I made my first cider. The airlock has now slowed to one bubble every fifteen second. Do I need to rake it to a secondary or is it okay to leave in the primary? When should I transfer it to bottles? How long should I wait to drink it? (I swear the hardest thing in homebrewing is waiting to drink your brew) And lastly, do I need to carbonate it or is it okay the way it is.
I appreciate all of your guys help. Thanks alot

Yooper 09-19-2007 11:51 PM

Well, the first thing to do is to be patient. Ciders and wines take a while. Be thankful, though- meads take even longer.

I rack to secondary when the sg is about 1.010 or after about 5 days, so rack if you want. After that, you only rack if you have lees (sediment) present and maybe only every 30 days or so.

You don't bottle until fermentation is completely done, otherwise you'll have bottle bombs. As far as carbonation, that is 100% up to you. I prefer mine still, but some people like the bubbles.

Adolphus79 09-20-2007 02:11 AM

It would also help if we knew what your recipe is. 1 bubble every 15 seconds isn't very slow for cider, I wait to rack my Apfelwein until I can count a full minute between bubbles (generally after about 4 weeks).

Like Yooper Chick said, ciders take a while. 8 days is nothing, depending on what your recipe is, and which yeast you used, you shouldn't be ready to rack for 3 - 4 weeks at least. My only suggestion is to make sure you have another batch going so you have something to drink while you wait for the next batch to finish... :drunk:

I recommend Apfelwein if you want something quick and dirty, it only takes about a month to finish, and if you rack it and let it sit for a second month, it only gets better.

Either way, RDWHAHB... ;)

shmoeusn 09-20-2007 02:54 AM

thanks for the help. As for my recipe I used 1.5 Litres of Apple Juice and 64oz.of Apple Cider. I used brewers yeast? and added Table sugar. My LHBS told me taht i didn't have to rack it, and it should e ready to drink in a month or so. Not sure as to his accuracy, but I'm positive he knows more than me

mgayer 09-20-2007 11:35 AM

The only reason I rack my ciders are for getting it off the lees. Other than that any yeast can handle being in the carboy for 30 days without off flavors developing. I usually wait until fermentation and all activity has ceased. Your airlock will stop but the suspended CO2 will still produce small champagne like bubble for a week or so after it is finished. There are lots of brewers yeast. Was it Superior brand? I am now sold on using it for any ciders as it gives a very nice creamy taste and developes quickly with good apple taste.

It is not done! Don't bottle it until it is absolutly clear. A problem people get into is bottling it before it is clear and the yeast is still suspended. Then after a couple months they notice a different flavor or stale flavors developing and lots of sediment. This is the dead yeast cells and it can give some off flavors. Drinking is the hardest part! It does get much better with age but if you get a good young cider, and some yeast are made to give young wines, then try some and wait a bit to see. I like mine at at least 3 months but 6 is much better. I like a very sweet cider carb but most uncarbed. I have been using splendia to sweeten for my wife as she loves it and does not have the carbs.

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