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Old 11-10-2009, 03:29 AM   #1
dldorsey
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Default First Cider Run (and first post)

Hello everyone.

Just thought I'd post about my first go at brewing cider. Well, my first go at brewing anything other than that chocolate milk I left in the car too long.

The airlock went on at around 8:30PM on 8 Nov 2009 and I'm happy to report that the 6.5 gallon carboy is up and bubbling away with:

- 6 Gallons of C6H7O2K-free Zeigler's Apple Cider (SG 1.041 with no added sugars)
- 6 Cups of light evaporated cane sugar
- 3 Cups of corn sugar
- Safale S-04 yeast

Sugars brought the OG up to 1.063

I going to rack it most of it at 1.020 or so but probably play around with pulling some before and after that.

Does anyone here have experience using "beugel" or swing top style bottles? They seem fairly easy and I certainly won't mind being forced to drink 34 ounces at a time. Are they too good to be true? Can one carb in them?

Cheers,

Danny

P.S. Many thanks to CvilleKevin for making it easy to pick yeast and sugars.
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Old 11-10-2009, 04:25 AM   #2
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Swing tops are more expensive and a number of people complain that they can't hold a seal very well. It's also a little annoying to deal with that swinging top while drinking out of the bottle.

In Germany there are a number of beer companies that use them, and while living there I never had a problem with an undercarbonated beer. The people having problems with them are probably either messing up the bottling process, not replacing the seals, using inferior bottles/seals, or keeping them in bottles for too long. On the positive side, they look very cool and they're easier to use than a bottle capper.
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Old 11-10-2009, 11:46 AM   #3
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I think swing tops rock! They're more expensive than just reusing bottles from store-bought beer, but bottling in them is so much easier. You can also get 3 or 4 bottlings out of the rubber seals, maybe more. With the styles & size ranges available, there's a swing top bottle to fit just about every need. Depending on how many bottles you need, swing tops are cheaper than a kegging system. Yes, you can carb in them, they're designed for it. I also think swing tops add a little "old world charm" to a bottle of homebrew. Now as far as drinking out of the bottle goes, who drinks homebrewed anything out of the bottle? I'll take a slow pour into a cold glass every time. Regards, GF.

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Old 11-10-2009, 01:21 PM   #4
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Do yourself a favor and taste the cider around 1.023 or so it may be perfect to your taste. Or you may decide to let it go dryer. Taste and check SG every day after it hits the 1.025 mark.
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Old 11-10-2009, 05:00 PM   #5
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Swing top bottles are great and easy to use. Find a local bar that serves Grolsch, and ask if they will save some bottles for you... I got a good number for free that way. Recently I bought a case of German Pilsner (Flensburger I think it's called?) in 12oz swing-top bottles for ~$23... Not bad considering how expensive it is to buy EMPTY bottles. I used some of these last night to bottle a gallon of freshly fermented cider after cold-crashing, and it was quick and easy.

As for drinking homebrewed anything straight out of the bottle, I wouldn't recommend it. Yeast and sediment usually settle out while its sitting in the bottle and you generally don't want to drink that stuff. Even commercially brewed beers taste best out of proper glassware, why not give your homebrew every advantage you can?
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Old 11-11-2009, 04:53 AM   #6
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I guess I'm just not cool like everyone else, I still drink out of bottles. Sometimes I don't even use coasters!
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Old 11-11-2009, 01:11 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Teromous View Post
I guess I'm just not cool like everyone else, I still drink out of bottles. Sometimes I don't even use coasters!
you barbarian!
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Old 11-18-2009, 09:04 PM   #8
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Pulled it out of primary last night at 1.021. I put 4 gallons in the fridge to crash it and left 2 in jugs to cruise a little bit farther. I'll keep y'all posted on how it goes.

I got a case of 1L amber swing tops today which should cover about 3 gallons. The rest is going into 12oz bottles under crown seal.

Waiting for it is going to be waaaaay harder than lifting the 6 gallon carboy.

Cheers!
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Old 11-19-2009, 12:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Teromous View Post
I guess I'm just not cool like everyone else, I still drink out of bottles. Sometimes I don't even use coasters!
Don't you get some bitterness from the sediment in the bottle?
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