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Old 10-10-2012, 04:21 PM   #1
quakeman
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Default old style dry cider , adventures

hi , new to this forum and brewing . Having a little orchard , I decided to brew some old style dry cider ( no carbonation) like our grandfathers would have made it ,I like drinks in general and beer in particular. since with beer , brewing its more complicated and a little bit expensive , I thought to try to brew some cider.
Bought 2 carboys (23 L each) some yeast , apples taken to mill and pasteurized.
-pitched 1 carboy with samp yeast on 18 sep , no added sugar
1 carboy with some dry beer yeast on 19 sep , no added sugar (still fermenting 10 oct starting to clear)
-the samp yeast carboy fermented actively till 30 sep, then started to clear , at a minute and a half gas bubbling , decided to rack (on 06 oct) . the first taste from the hose was great , the first glass was tastier than a french normandie cider i bought from a store, and the best thing besides the taste was the alcohol (estimated by me at around 8.1-8.8 % )
- I was prepared with some Potassium metabisulphite,ascorbic acid and tannin tabs ,since I didnt wanted to lose my precious brew ( I intended to mix the tabs with cider and back in carboy for about 3-4 days to clear more) but my father and I decided not to use them since the taste was so great , no sign of alteration , so I had 4 plastic containers 5 L each put to fridge, waiting to prepare some bottles.
- after 1 day , the taste of the cider started to alter (faster the cider from the fridge), in a way of becoming more dryer , and a subtle sour taste something like a old cabbage or lettuce would taste and that great yeast taste starting to go off (normal since it was at cold) , the containers was all clean , it must have been some bacteria in the basement ( a loot of pickles fermented out of jars there)
- so in fear of loosing the batch I ground some of that magic saving tablet , and hoped for the best, but some residue ( i guess ascorbic acid) still flows in a nice thick circle on the surface of the containers ( i pitched all 4 with that.i thought later- stupid me, no test first).
- after 2 days the taste test ( still from the fridge ) , its a different story , more dryness but in a refreshing way , still feel the apples , a little bitterness appeared , no sign of that sour taste , but theres a little taste of artificial vitamin c , witch ads to the dryness of the cider - i can live with that hoping to dissipate in time. after a 0.5L pint you sure feel good , about 8 % abv.
- i guess , i got what i was aiming for (except the vitamin taste)
- now the second carboy - fermented since 19 sep , now its 10 oct and its slowed to about 1 bubble a minute and started to clear nice ( i have no instruments and decided to go by taste and instincts , learning from others and from my mistakes)
- what would you recommend me to do with the second carboy to avoid the alteration and to keep the best taste to my cider ?
- what do you think about plastic pet bottles , it will affect the taste of my cider ? i am trying to keep the costs down.
cheers



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Old 10-13-2012, 08:14 PM   #2
quakeman
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-second carboy (dry beer yeast) racked today , pitched on 19 sep, fermented dry till 13 oct, ( bubbles at about 1.5 min); fermented longer than the first carboy (samp yeast) , i would have expected more alcohol and dryer cider , it is a little dryer but the alcohol about the same ,on half of that 6 gall pitched some sulphites (less than the first carboy), and the rest into bottles , the taste was great but changing in time into an affected not enjoyable cider , hoping that the bottles will be ok , i'm thinking about pasteurize them to kill eventual bacteria in it , (set the oven to 80 Celsius and put the bottles for 5 min in there )
- to be completely honest: beer (good beer ) its tastier , and more pleasant than the cider i just made ( its better than white wine , but the red liqueurous wine at about 15% abv its unbeatable in some moments , i dont know if it can be found in america but the wine:"Lacrima lui ovidiu" red-by murfatlar romania, aged 5 years, its the best wine you would want to drink with your lady , after drinking this wine you will raise your standards concerning red wines )
- hoping in time my cider will age and mellow a little , i'm thinking about brewing some beer kits now -i can't live without beer- cheers

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