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Old 09-09-2013, 10:55 PM   #1
revkev6
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Default homebrew/cider noob recipes!

hey all this is my first post here. I've been wanting to start homebrewing for a couple years and finally decided I would take the plunge with a cider. I am thinking of starting with a few different one gallon batches to try different recipes. I don't have a keg and Co2 equipment...

I would like a good recipe for sweet sparkling cider, a dryer mix and possibly something in the apple wine realm.

most of what I have read about making sparkling cider uses Co2.... some have pasteurized once the Co2 levels they wanted were reached. does anyone have a reciped for sparkling cider that you let ferment out then add back sugar and non fermentable sugars for sweetness if required??

I like the idea of sparkling but don't want to have bottle bombs....

I am making my buy list at midwestsupply and so far have the following
nottingham yeast
ec-118 yeast
hydrometer
test jar
mini siphon
yeast nutrient
camden tablets
airlocks
rubber stoppers #6

I was planning on using 1 gallon wine jugs for fermenting this time around.

I was going to try either grolsch style swing tops or get a bottle topper??

anyone have thoughts?? I have read some of Ed Worts applewein thread, cvillekevin's crazy thread which I've barely scratched the surface of.... and a couple other misc. threads...

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Old 09-10-2013, 02:09 AM   #2
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Ed Worts apfelwein is awesome. I did some still, some carb'd. If you want it sweet, just add honey or sugar when serving, or artificial sugar when bottling.

I plan to do the next batch, splitting it up to do some with fruit, maybe some herbs, who knows! Easy and delicious, for sure.

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Old 09-10-2013, 02:44 AM   #3
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Buy a few different yeasts if you're getting everything shipped. You may want to experiment in the future.

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Old 09-10-2013, 03:17 AM   #4
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+1 Buy a few different yeasts if you're getting everything shipped

You might want to try a wheat yeast like 3056 or 3068, and a wine yeast like D47 or 71B. That will give you a pretty good spectrum of what works with your juice. I'd also recommend WLP041 because it ferments slow, so easier to stop at a desired sweetness.

I'd skip the yeast nutrient and campden, especially since you are doing gallon batches. Generally speaking, less is more with cider. A gallon batch is very unlikely to get a stuck fermentation and since you are only making a gallon, you will probably drink it long before it has a chance to spoil.

One of the advantages to doing gallon batches is that for the ale and wheat yeasts, you can stop fermentation by sticking them in the fridge, as long as you keep them in the fridge. Try to keep them in the 60-65 temp range when fermenting. Depending on which yeast works best with your juice and your taste, you could either do another round of 4-5 gallons to check out other yeasts that are similar, or take the winner and scale it up

If you want to do some sweet sparkling styles and dont want to pasteurize or keg, then get plastic bottles instead of glass. Also, depending on your jugs, you might want to use 6.5 or 7 stoppers instead of 6.

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Old 09-10-2013, 12:10 PM   #5
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cyclman, with ed worts apfelwein is it easy to back sweeten during bottling to carb??

Cville, thanks for the info. I haven't bought my cider yet as it's just a week or two early. It's about a 50-50 chance I will be getting unpasteurized cider right from my orchard. It was my understanding that camden is used with unpasteurized cider by most peopleprior to pitching??

I'm a bit leery of using too many different types of yeast at this point. I was thinking of trying a couple different recipes with similar yeast and cider so the variables are reduced until I find a type of cider I like, at that point I was planning on moving to different yeast types to see how they effect a specific recipe. I was going to use the ec-118 for the apfelwein and the nottingham for ciders.

what kind of plastic bottles would I get?? like old soda bottles??

I was planning to recycle glass gallon wine jugs or if needed use the plastic milk style jugs that the cider comes in. I would prefer glass though.

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Old 09-10-2013, 12:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
It was my understanding that camden is used with unpasteurized cider by most people prior to pitching??
True, but that doesnt mean its necessary. The main advantage with campden is that the cider will age more reliably, but if you're making gallon batches, aging shouldnt be too much of an issue. In the short term, it will impart a bitter taste that takes a few months to fade and ale yeasts do not like it much - so if you are making some test batches to see what you like, campden will interfere with this. Once you have dialed in a recipe that you like and you want it to last for 12 months, campden will be more useful. You could also do two gallons for each yeast - one with and without if you want to taste the effect. If you use good sanitation at the press, you shouldnt need it.

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what kind of plastic bottles would I get?? like old soda bottles??
Yes, those work. brew stores also sell plastic brew bottles. gatorade bottles work OK, whatever you have on hand should be OK. The nice thing about making cider is that you can start low budget and relatively low effort while you are experimenting with recipes
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Old 09-10-2013, 12:59 PM   #7
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ok so the camden is a no for quick small batches!

interesting on the bottles, I didn't know those would work. what about half gallon juice bottles like ocean spray??

I understand the process of carbing a dry cider... let it ferment out until the SG (is it SG or OG what's the difference? I've seen both used) levels out for a few days then use X amount of whatever sugar you want to carb it before bottling.

is there a method for sweet cider that does not ferment out all the way then you bottle and let carb up a bit then cold crash?? basically leaving some of the natural sugars in the cider. I'm assuming a method like this would have to stay cold??

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Old 09-10-2013, 01:03 PM   #8
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what about half gallon juice bottles like ocean spray??
Sure, as long as you have some friends to help you knock back a half gallon when you open it, because the carb will only hold up so long - like getting a growler of beer filled.

Quote:
is there a method for sweet cider that does not ferment out all the way then you bottle and let carb up a bit then cold crash?? basically leaving some of the natural sugars in the cider. I'm assuming a method like this would have to stay cold??
Yep, you can do this with a ale or wheat yeast. You can also bottle pasteurize (but not with plastic). That takes more time, so I'd wait until you get a recipe you like first.
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Old 09-10-2013, 01:52 PM   #9
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I'm pretty excited about this whole setup... family lore says John Chapman is my 8th great uncle.... haven't done any genealogy though!

I think I'm going to put in an order for the items I listed above unless you think there should be something else added?? I want one yeast for a wine and one for an ale, should I choose different yeast to start with??

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Old 09-10-2013, 02:19 PM   #10
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I want one yeast for a wine and one for an ale, should I choose different yeast to start with??
I'd use D47 or 71B for the wine yeast over the EC1118. They will give you more residual apple taste, especially if you are not using apples that were grown specifically for hard cider. If you find you like it really dry and want to go even drier, then try the EC1118, but that's a minority taste.
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