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Old 10-16-2012, 01:40 PM   #1
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Default Um, do you think it's still any good...?

Hey all,

I haven't posted in quite a while... In May my wife and I were shocked to learn we were expecting, so of course everything has changed gears and all the stuff I loved doing in April... ...I haven't been able to do since...

Back around that time-frame - I honestly can't even remember when - I started a cider going. It had about 5.5 gallons of unpastuerized fresh-pressed cider (this stuff is phenomenal, really.) And a BUNCH of powdered sugar. If I put anything else in it, I can't even remember...

I used Safale S-04 - at least I'm pretty sure - 'cause I had to order it off the internet - my LHBS didn't carry it.

I let it ferment down to 1.025, maybe 1.02 - again, I don't remember - and cold crashed it in a basement refrigerator that I picked up around the same time.

I DID rack it after a few days of cold-crashing. It was right around the 3rd week of May when I did that. I stuck it back in the fridge, went on a family vacation...

...and haven't TOUCHED the thing since. Honestly I keep forgetting it's even down there.

I have NO idea if it's continued to ferment, I have NO idea what it's gravity is right now, I'm not even sure if there's still liquid in the airlock (actually I'm pretty sure there is...)

I figure I either have an AMAZING cider down there simply for the fact that I've left it alone, or I've got a new bed of yeast which has made the cider taste terrible and I'm going to have a disgusting science project on my hands...

I bought a kegging setup to put this in - was going to skip the bottling phase, pasteurization phase - all that mess - and experiment with kegging. It's been so long since I started this, I can't even remember what to do next...

Do I just rack it into the keg, plug in the CO2 and set for drinking pressure? Do I need to do anything else?

Sorry for sounding so scatterbrained, but that's exactly how I've been lately. I have a to-do list that's a mile long, am working two jobs since June, and haven't had time to stop and think in what feels like an eternity...

Thanks for any tips/advice/guidance.

Jeff

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Old 10-16-2012, 01:50 PM   #2
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I'm sure it tastes find, bit there's only 1 way to find out! I've never kegged before, but do you have to get it off the lees before you keg?

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Old 10-16-2012, 02:15 PM   #3
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Quote:
Do I just rack it into the keg, plug in the CO2 and set for drinking pressure?
Yep. If you set the PSI up to 25 or so, it will carb faster, but if your not in a hurry, just set it to 10-15 and leave it.

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Do I need to do anything else?
you might want to taste it first, just to make sure everything is OK before you keg

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do you have to get it off the lees before you keg?
you have to get it off the lees to remain stable, which presumably you want to do if kegging
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Old 10-16-2012, 02:27 PM   #4
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Lees? No idea what that is...

I rack it into the keg anyways, so that should get it off of whatever has settled in the past few months, right?

Nope - obviously not in a hurry since I can't even guess when I'll get around to doing this...

And I will say that I had a satellite fermenter which I capped and stuck in the fridge. It HAS become pressurized which worries me that this stuff is still fermenting, but I tasted it a few weeks ago on a whim and it was surprisingly delicious...

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Old 10-16-2012, 02:36 PM   #5
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Lees= dead yeasties on the bottom of the fermenter after primary, especially when cold crashed

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Old 10-16-2012, 02:49 PM   #6
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Ah - isn't there like, 7 other names for that then? Kraus, maybe? Cake? I can't remember...

EDIT: Trub - isn't trub one of them too?

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Old 10-16-2012, 04:39 PM   #7
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Ah - isn't there like, 7 other names for that then? Kraus, maybe? Cake? I can't remember...

EDIT: Trub - isn't trub one of them too?
Krausen (my favorite word ever) is the foam you get at the top of a batch of rapidly fermenting must (if wine/cider) or wort i think, either that or mash, (if beer).

Cake and trub refer to the opposite, the collection of gunk at the bottom of a fermenter when fermentation is nearing completion. To me, cake is more the actual white layer of compacted yeast, and trub is the whole mess of gooey crap from unfiltered pulp and apple chunks I sometimes mistakenly get in there from my juicing process.
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:33 PM   #8
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Krausen (my favorite word ever) is the foam you get at the top of a batch of rapidly fermenting must (if wine/cider) or wort i think, either that or mash, (if beer).

Cake and trub refer to the opposite, the collection of gunk at the bottom of a fermenter when fermentation is nearing completion. To me, cake is more the actual white layer of compacted yeast, and trub is the whole mess of gooey crap from unfiltered pulp and apple chunks I sometimes mistakenly get in there from my juicing process.
Yeah I thought krausen was somethin else even as I wrote that.

So what's the difference between trub, cake, and lees?

(I know this is getting off-topic, but it seems like the general consesus is "take a taste, but it's probably fine." This is afterall a cider...)

Jeff
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:48 AM   #9
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Lees are the dead yeasties and crap at the bottom of primary fermenter. Cake is specifically the packed down whiter portion of the lees that are specifically the compacted corpses of the hundreds (thousands) of yeast critters whose hardwork created the alcohol durin the ferment. Trub is really just the whole solid fraction of what's left over in the primary fermenter after fermentation.

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Old 12-11-2012, 03:09 PM   #10
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By the way, I realized I never posted back in this thread:

I FINALLY got around to cleaning the keg, racking the cider into it, and hooking up the CO2 at about 14-15 psi. Let it sit for a few days and poured a glass....

WOW!!! It's delicious!! Incredibly simple recipe, too - 5 gallons of cider, 2 pounds of powdered sugar (easily dissolvable), and the S-04 Yeast recommended elsewhere on the forum here. It's a very simple & light cider - not as complex in flavor as the one I made with lots of different juices (white grape, mango, peach, apple) but certainly enjoyable and drinkable.

Thanks for the help & guidance!

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