We want to make a small test batch of cider today, but the weather in California keeps going up and down. Our temp controlled freezer is at 55 for another batch we're doing. Most of the cider recipes I'm seeing are a bit higher, in the mid to upper sixties. If we just pitched with a lager yeast would we be ok? From reading our old standby (US-05) is ok to about 59 but there isn't much said about below that. Any suggestions?
US05, S04 and Nottty all do OK down to 55 if you get the ferments started at warmer temps, although I've never held them there for a long time - often the basement swings 55-60 in the winter and the ale yeasts really like those temps. S23 is a good lager yeast for cider. That stuff like the cold so much it is hard to cold crash. I would still start it warmer and then move to the freezer when the ferment is going
I have used US-05 at 58F, if anything it may ferment a little slower at 55F.
In Primary: Belgium Chimay clones.
In Secondary: Braggot, pale ale, end of the world white.
Conditioning: Mead, Cider, braggot, Belgium Wheat.
On Tap: Clones, Chimay Blue, Red, Porter, malted cider.
Bottles: Far, far, too many to list.