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Old 03-01-2009, 01:06 AM   #1
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Default Done already!?

In a previous post I expressed some concern over the state of my fermenting cider, but I decided to just let it be. But then I noticed today that there were no bubbled in the airlock, so I just took a gravity reading. It's at 1.002! Started at 1.050. I was not expecting this. It's only been in the primary for 10 days and I thought cider was a "long-term" fermenter. I tasted the sample and am quite pleased with where this could end up after it's had a chance to age - dry certainly, but with good flavor. It's still very cloudy though.

Anyways, I have some questions:
1) Is 10 days (or less) "normal" for fermenting cider? I used just straight apple cider and a vial of liquid ale yeast (White Lab's Burton Ale yeast to be specific)

2) Do I leave it in the carboy to clear up? If so, should/could I move it somewhere cooler?

3) When should I bottle?

Thanks!


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Old 03-01-2009, 01:10 AM   #2
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It might finish lower than 1.002, so just wait it out. It'll finish fermenting, and then it'll "drop clear". It starts at the top, and then clears all the way to the bottom.

I would say you can bottle in a month or two, if it's finished and clear.


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Old 03-01-2009, 01:29 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by YooperBrew View Post
It might finish lower than 1.002, so just wait it out. It'll finish fermenting, and then it'll "drop clear". It starts at the top, and then clears all the way to the bottom.

I would say you can bottle in a month or two, if it's finished and clear.
Would it be advisable to rack it to a secondary at some point? There's a lot of sludge on the bottom. Now, technically, I don't currently own a secondary, but this could be a good excuse to go buy one...
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Old 03-01-2009, 01:49 AM   #4
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Would it be advisable to rack it to a secondary at some point? There's a lot of sludge on the bottom. Now, technically, I don't currently own a secondary, but this could be a good excuse to go buy one...
Oh, yes. I thought you did that already. If you have a thick layer of lees, I'd recommend racking and then topping up so you don't have a ton of headspace and then it can left alone for a long time if you want.
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Old 03-01-2009, 04:03 AM   #5
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Good questions. I'm on my first batch also, only 4 days in. Started at OG 1.06, already down to 1.014 tonight. Still bubbling consistently, but a touch slower than before. I made a rip-roaring starter before pitching...wonder if that had something to do with it.

Anyway, I'm in the same boat as you are, so I'll be watching the answers you get!
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Old 03-01-2009, 05:17 PM   #6
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Should we top off with juice or water?
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Old 03-02-2009, 12:40 AM   #7
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Taking Yooper's advice, I bought a 3-gallon glass carboy from my LHBS today and racked my cider to get it off the lees. I topped it off with some fresh apple cider I had in the fridge. I figure I'll let it sit at room temperature for a few more days - I expect the racking and the addition of more apple cider might rouse the yeast back to action. Then, I'll move it to the cellar to sit until it clears.
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Old 03-02-2009, 04:09 AM   #8
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Can it sit and clear at a lot lower temperature -- like 55 degrees or so?
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Old 03-02-2009, 04:16 AM   #9
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It'll finish fermenting, and then it'll "drop clear". It starts at the top, and then clears all the way to the bottom.
Awesome...I was just about to post a question about that. Mine started developing a clearer layer after about 3 days. It hasn't cleared much since then, but I was just wondering.
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Old 03-02-2009, 12:48 PM   #10
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Can it sit and clear at a lot lower temperature -- like 55 degrees or so?
Yes, but make sure fermentation is finished first because that temperature will cause the yeast to go dormant. It'll clear faster at 55 than at room temperature, too.


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