First Cider - Proper Fermentation Times and Other Questions
I just recently got into brewing beer. I have a few friends who are averse to gluten so I decided to try a cider. I looked through this forum and the cider recipes forum and decided to go with this. Here is the list of ingredients I used:
2.5 gallon Safeway 100% Apple Juice
2 gallons Safeway 100% Apple Cider
0.5 gallons Pom Wonderful Pomegranate Juice
23 oz 100% Pure Honey
1 tsp Yeast Nutrient
Lalvin EC-1118 Champagne Yeast
I mixed it all together. Heated up the honey in some water and added it. Pitched the yeast and let it sit.
OG was 1.052 on 3/21/12
So, fast-forward to now (3/28/12). I measured the gravity on Monday and it was 1.004 so it is almost done with the fermentation process. I plan on letting it sit for awhile longer but I would like to know how long I should let it sit and if there is anything special I should do with it? Obviously I need to wait until the fermentation is done (same SG readings on multiple days) but should I let it sit in the primary for longer? Should I rack to a secondary and let sit for longer? Should I bottle sometime soon?
I tasted it on Monday as well and it was VERY dry. It seriously tasted like a dry white wine. I will probably have to end up back-sweetening it at some point. Is this dryness something that should be expected? Is this common with the yeast strain I used?
Also, it smells really weird. Almost like boiled eggs. It doesn't taste like boiled eggs but it has a pretty distinct smell. There is no sign of an infection or anything like that so is this just the yeast doing work (and letting off weird smells)? Is it something I should be worried about?
Primary - Dunkelweizen
Bottle Condition - Pumpkin Ale