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Old 11-23-2009, 07:20 PM   #1
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I made a cyser this fall; it sat in secondary for a month and a half before I bottled it in wine bottles last weekend. It was very clear after sitting for the six weeks. I pulled aside the last two bottles because I got greedy and sucked up some trub which caused cloudiness. It still drank quite well though! On the second bottle I opened last night I found the cyser had begun to carbonate-uh oh! It may be only those bottles from the end of the carboy but I am worried that all of the bottles will build pressure and risk popping the cork or bursting. What can I do? Refigerating should slow the yeast activity, what about taking them to near freezing? I would like to put a few aside for long term aging but I need to know they will be ok before I do. Otherwise, I've got to get drinkin!
By the by, this was my first cider and it exceeded my expectations. Very clear and potent. More like a dry white wine than a sweet hard cider. I've got another batch going.

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Old 11-23-2009, 07:51 PM   #2
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You could try pasteurising in the dishwasher, though it may affect the taste.

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Old 11-23-2009, 08:02 PM   #3
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I don't have a dishwasher, unfortunately. Thanks,

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Old 11-23-2009, 08:08 PM   #4
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Did you use a hydrometer, to see if the cyser was done fermenting? Honey is a notoriously slow fermenter, and you want to be sure it's finished before bottling.

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Old 11-23-2009, 08:13 PM   #5
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It's highly likely it's one of 2 things:

a) you didn't let it finish. Just because it's clear doesn't necessarily mean it's done. Meads and cysers usually start good, but can do a long slow finish as it moves from under 1.020 or so down to fully dry. As Yoop said - did you use a hydrometer to be SURE it's completely done?
2) it's got residual gas. If you didn't manually de-gas, there's a TON of residual co2 in solution that takes months of aging to do on it's own. Almost all my "young" meads (less than 6 months old) have this sort of slightly gassy taste to them.

Did you taste before you bottled and that gassy/carbonation was not in those samples, or did you just bottle randomly?

How long was it in primary before the 1.5m secondary?

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Old 11-23-2009, 08:21 PM   #6
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It was in primary a couple of weeks before 6 weeks in secondary. I tasted prior to bottling and there was no indication of carbonation at that point. No hydrometer! I've learned my lesson on that task. I didn't realize the solution was full of CO2.
What now? I can refrigerate and drink them all over this holiday I guess; I was planning to save a few for long term aging (years) so I could analyze/understand the improvement or deterioration.
I have a three month old mead in a carboy for bulk aging. I was considering bottling that over the holiday break. That sounds like a bad idea now; should I let that sit for extended aging in the carboy?

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Old 11-23-2009, 08:23 PM   #7
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I did not. I didn't realize that the honey would not be metabolized by the yeast within a couple of months. I thought that was adequate time for all free sugars to be consumed. Now I know it is not!

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Old 11-23-2009, 08:29 PM   #8
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Well, without a hydrometer reading -- we just don't KNOW what's been eaten by the yeast and what hasn't...

I'd let your mead in secondary for another 3 months minimum if you can.


As for your cyser...you have a few options...let them sit on your wine shelf and sort of monitor the crap out of them for bulging corks/explosions. Claphamsa has a little system where if he sees the cork a little out, he sharpies a line right where it meets the bottle. If he checks later and sees that the line has separated, that means the cork's coming out and it's time to cool that baby and drink it.

Or, you put em all in the fridge and drink like crazy...

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Old 11-23-2009, 08:45 PM   #9
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Thanks for the great advice. For next time; besides aging much longer and keeping hydrometer data, should I add sulfites or something to kill any remaining yeast before I bottle?

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Old 11-23-2009, 08:54 PM   #10
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If it's done and you're not backsweetening - no need. I think people use sulfites for LONG term aging (probably in the 5+ yr range). I don't intend to let my mead sit around, I made it for drinking!

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