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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Cider Forum > Yeast killing
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Old 03-22-2012, 06:53 AM   #1
Guthrie
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Default Yeast killing

How long will it take for potassium sorbate to kill yeast?

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Old 03-22-2012, 08:53 AM   #2
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strictly speaking it doesn't kill them. from jack keller's website:

Sulfite, by itself, does not actually kill off the yeast. Instead it creates an environment increasingly hostile to yeast and deadly to most other microorganisms such as bacteria. Wine yeasts, however, can be quite tolerant of sulfites. For that reason a stabilizer is also added to the wine.

Potassium sorbate, sold as a chemical or behind a product name such as Sorbistat K, is a commercial wine stabilizer that should be used in conjunction with Campden. In other words, it works better with sulfites present than without, and it works better than sulfites alone. Potassium sorbate disrupts the reproductive cycle of yeast. Yeasts present are unable to reproduce and their population slowly diminishes through attrition.

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Old 03-22-2012, 03:16 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Guthrie View Post
How long will it take for potassium sorbate to kill yeast?
the only way to KILL the yeast is to pasteurize.
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Old 03-22-2012, 03:28 PM   #4
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So even if I add campden tablets the yeast still may start up when I add sugar to backsweeten.

To pasteurize, is boiling the only method?

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Old 03-22-2012, 03:44 PM   #5
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When done at the correct time, campden and sorbate are effective ways to stabilize, BUT the yeast population must be minimal, in other words the wine or cider must be clear when you add them. Once added give it 12 -24 hours than back-sweeten then give it 3 days to a week to confirm that fermentation has not started back up.

I HATE chemicals and I hate the fact that there is a chance ( keep in mind that it is a very small chance when done correctly probably less than 1%) that the chemicals will not work and the ferment will start back up again. It is for those reasons that I pasteurize.

It is important to note pasteurization IS NOT BOILING. Will boiling pasteurize? yes but it is like trying to hang a picture with a sledge hammer, it will work but not very well. The reason for this is a little bit of heat will not only kill the yeast and any other bacteria present but also help speed up the aging time, but a lot of heat will change the chemical composition which in most cases will alter the flavor in a negative way.

There are basically two pasteurization methods easily done by the home brewer: bulk pasteurization and bottle pasteurization. (there are tons of other methods that don't even involve heat but they are not easily done at home) Bottle pasteurization is explained in great detail in a sticky at the top of the cider forum. Bulk pasteurization is a s follows:

rack the wine or cider in to a stock pot and place it on the stove with a candy thermometer in the liquid. Turn on the heat and let it get up to 140º F then cover with a lid, turn the heat off and let it cool. From there you can rack in to bottles. It is a piece of cake and works beautifully???

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Old 03-22-2012, 04:18 PM   #6
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Pasteurizing prior to bottling? Interesting. Does pasteurizing prior to bottling cause a higher SRM? Seems like the sugars might caramelize a little.

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Old 03-22-2012, 04:30 PM   #7
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"SRM" ??? I am not familiar with that particular acronym. I could be mistaken but I believe caramelization does not even start until higher temps, say above 200º and I am 99% sure that caramelization, at least with table sugar and water, doesn't happen until the water boils off so by doing it at 140º F max there is no chance of caramelization.

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Old 03-22-2012, 05:14 PM   #8
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Thanks guys, I myself am not a fan of chemicals so I think I'll try this bulk pasteurizing method.

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Old 03-22-2012, 05:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
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"SRM" ???
Standard Reference Method. It's color system beer brewers use to categorize beer color. (like lovibond I think)

I wouldn't worry about the final color of your cider too much if it tastes good. My opinion is that ciders aren't pigeon-holed into very specific categories as much as beer is.
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Old 03-22-2012, 07:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daze
"SRM" ??? I am not familiar with that particular acronym. I could be mistaken but I believe caramelization does not even start until higher temps, say above 200º and I am 99% sure that caramelization, at least with table sugar and water, doesn't happen until the water boils off so by doing it at 140º F max there is no chance of caramelization.
Don't you need sugar present to caramelize anyway? Pasteurizing a dry cider shouldn't have any.of that risk because of the lack of sugars to begin with.
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