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Old 11-02-2012, 09:32 PM   #1
EpicCider
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Default My First Cider Brew

I decided to take the plunge and give cider making a try.

After grabbing some supplies from midwestsupplies, I picked up the cheapest apple juice (without preservatives) I could find, which was $1.49 for a half gallon.

I also grabbed some apple juice concentrate for back-sweeting and carbonation generation.

Process:
Clean everything as directed

Add 5 Gallons of Nature's Nectar 100% Apple Juice into the carboy [initial reading 1.050], toss in 2 cups of brown sugar (I added it by shaking into juice before putting into carboy, but it was probably too small of an amount to matter, final reading was about 1.054ish (+.004ish))





I have a million questions, I've looked around the forums for a while now and I figured the best way to learn is to just do it.

Back-end sweetening, carbonating in bottle, and spicing the cider are the biggest things are still a little shaky to me.

I'm here to learn.

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Old 11-03-2012, 12:31 AM   #2
zaireeka
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Not adding a ton of sugar is a good move. I usually just brew straight cider and bottle carbonate with 3/4 cup plain sugar dissolved in 2 cups of hot water. If you want a sweeter drink simply mix it with fresh juice in your glass.

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Primary: Lemongrass Witbier, Sweet Cherry Cider, Belgian Cider (D-90 Candi Syrup & Witbier Yeast)
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Old 11-03-2012, 02:15 AM   #3
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Congratulations btw on starting brewing!!! Its very rewarding and fun! Keep putting up pics too! Those are always the best threads...

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Old 11-03-2012, 06:13 PM   #4
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Day two, yeast is going to town.

All of the water moved to left side of the airlock but I've heard it's not an issue.

I'm now exploring ways to back sweeten the cider and add flavor.

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Old 11-03-2012, 06:54 PM   #5
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Nice. Yes, keep us abreast of the progress!

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Old 11-15-2012, 12:36 AM   #6
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Today I racked it to a secondary. (12 days have passed)

I had very little airlock activity the last two days, and when I tested the gravity, it was right about 1.000 dead even.

I now added a can of puree raspberry to add flavor to the cider. I did save some of the "bottom" cider towards the yeast build up, and it tastes terribly sulfur-y (which was concerning). I put this extra into a wine bottle to sample, and later into two beer bottles with caps (to taste later to see if it calms down).

Hopefully it's just a young cider and that will pass in time.

Pictures below. I am a bit torn because I know I added sugar, but I'm not sure of how to calculate the new alcohol by volume. (1.05 to 1.00 and I got about 1.012 although its not mixed well.) Because it's for personal consumption, I'm not going to worry about it.

Started a second batch as well (it's about ready to be racked as well)



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Old 11-15-2012, 02:49 AM   #7
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The sulfur taste is common. It is mainly from the yeast and it will dissipate over time. Apple juice itself is also rather sulfury. Cider is best when it has aged. Some people bulk age it in the carboy for a few month. I personally bottle once it has cleared and then bottle age. 6-12 months is best.

Here is a page on calculating ABV: http://beeradvocate.com/articles/518

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Brew blog: Daniel's Home Brew
Beer Shots:http://www.flickr.com/photos/97438744@N07/
Primary: Lemongrass Witbier, Sweet Cherry Cider, Belgian Cider (D-90 Candi Syrup & Witbier Yeast)
Secondary: Barleywine (Marris Otter, CaraRed & Vienna and 100% Fuggels Hops)
Bottled: Hibiscus Witbier, Coffee Porter, Pinot Noir

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