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Old 06-10-2014, 02:36 AM   #1
GenIke
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Default Help - want to backsweeten and keg my cider

I'm a rookie kegger and no cider expert either. I have 2 carboys of of aged cider that I'd like to carbonate in my keezer. The part I get confused on is what I need to do to prevent a secondary fermentation. I plan on using 1 single can of frozen contentrate to back sweeten.

Do I need to add chemicals or is the cold of the keezer enough to prevent fermentation? If so, is there a "preferred" chemical to use with cider?

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Old 06-10-2014, 02:39 AM   #2
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If it stays in the keg and the keezer then the cold will not allow the yeast to ferment the sugars. Just don't bottle any from the keg and give it out. could always use campden tablets to be sure though.

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Old 06-10-2014, 02:43 AM   #3
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From my notes:

Three days before kegging add 1tsp of Potassium Sorbate and 1 Campden Tablet per gallon crushed.
Rack into keg with one or two cans of concentrated apple juice and let sit over night.
Chill and force carbonate

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Old 06-10-2014, 10:39 PM   #4
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atoughgram - I think you've doubled your potassium sorbate. Common pitch rate is more like 0.5 tsp/gal (I think anyway!)
I'd give it a full 24 hours after pitching potassium sorbate and Campden before adding any fermentable sugars - give it plenty of time to stun those living yeasties.

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Old 06-10-2014, 10:48 PM   #5
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Normally, you wouldn't add sorbate and campden to the vessel the cider is in, as there would still be lees (sediment) and tons of yeast in that.

You'd take 1/2 teaspoon per gallon of sorbate and 1 crushed campden tablet per gallon, and dissolve that in a little boil water. Once that is dissolved, put that in the keg and rack the cider into it with the tubing to the bottom so it fills from the bottom and swirls gently to mix (without splashing). Then, after a couple of days at room temperature, add your sweetener to taste.

Then it should be all set.

You probably don't have to stabilize with sorbate and campden if keeping the keg ice cold, but some wine yeast are active in the 40s so to be safe, stabilizing is a good way to do it. I don't like the taste of sorbate myself, but I don't drink sweetened ciders or wines either so just keg them dry.

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Old 06-12-2014, 02:28 AM   #6
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I believe I add 1tsp total of Potassium Sorbate - but I'll adjust it to a half per gallon.

That recipe has been working for the last three batches. I also use champagne yeast.

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Old 06-14-2014, 02:44 AM   #7
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I just sweeten with xylatol...its not fermentable and the flavor is very natural...but I dont like super sweet cider, so it does not take all that much xylatol to do the job. I hate the taste of sulphites and have never been happy with my camden tablet experiments.

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