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Old 11-25-2012, 06:09 PM   #1
KBentley57
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Default sparkling cider

Hey guys,

When I bottled my last cider, I wanted it to be dry and sweet. It finished out at about 1.000 using D47. It was extremely clear (at least to me), and had finished according to my hydrometer (a span of two weeks with no drop). I opened a bottle a few days ago to check on it, and I was met with a pop! Before I bottled, I hit it with the appropriate dose of campden and sorbate; that combined with the clearity led me to believe the yeast were history, guess not. When I bottled, I sweetened it with a can of apple juice concentrate, in a volume of about 6.25 gallons of cider. If my math is right, I added an additional 7.8 oz of sugar from the concentrate.

http://tinyurl.com/cgglhoj

Using some online calculators, this gives me a carbonation of about 3.25 Volumes (at 60F). I used standard, no bung, 750 ml clear wine bottles, and now I'm getting sort of nervous. It was def. fizzy (and delicious), but nothing seemed to make me question the integrity of the bottle. I didn't take an OG reading, but I will tonight when I break open another. There is a fine layer of what I am guessing is yeast on the bottom (side, whatever) of the bottle, just fyi.

Does anyone have experience with this level of carb in a wine bottle? If not I guess I'll be the first. It's setting in my racks at a temp of about 68 F. I'll keep everyone updated if anything adverse happens. If it goes to complete consumption without a single bomb, can we consider that carb amount safe?

Kyle B

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Old 11-25-2012, 06:37 PM   #2
Leithoa
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It varies bottle to bottle, even from the same manufacturer. I've had beer carbonate in wine bottles(my buddy has a couple that take crown caps) and hold the pressure just fine. It all depends on each individual bottle. Sometimes there are hidden stresses in the glass that lead to breakage. You might be able to spot them with polarized glasses like glass blowers do but if you're not sure what you're looking for it could be easy to overlook.

The rule of thumb is if it didn't contain carbonated beverages when you bought it, it's not designed for the stresses and shouldn't be used to carbonate in. Even carbonating in the bottle presents higher stresses than just storing a carbonated beverage in it. Which is why people don't bottle condition in growlers.
On the one hand if your whole batch makes it through the bottles are probably alright. On the other hand why gamble with the investment in time and resources when bottles you -know- will hold pressure only cost a a buck a piece(full of tasty beverage too!). You can probably ask a local bar or find a craigslist ad for someone giving away free bottles if you don't want to buy them.

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1°: Graham's English Cider, Cider; 2°: Mango Melomel; Conditioning: Banana wine, Cider, Orange/Clover blossom mead, Cyser, JAOM, In like a Lion RIS ; Drinking: In like a Lion RIS

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