Hello home brewers,
I'm not sure if this is the right place to be asking but i have a few questions about wild yeast in cider.
I have some experience with making cider years ago, but it was grandpas old wait and see method. I was going to start a batch, and thought I would do some more research on the science behind brewing, and am finding a ton of good info in this forum.
So here comes my newb question, I know you can help.
Saturday afternoon I visited a local orchard to pick up some fresh unpasteurized preservative free cider. The original plan was to treat it with K-metabisulphite before mixing everything and starting fermentation by adding yeast. The cider was left in the trunk overnight(was late when I got home, and was near freezing overnight) I was planning on sanitizing everything and starting this batch Sunday, but didn't have the time.
When I brought in the cider on Sunday morning I noticed one of the gallon jugs had a bit of foam in it, but thought it may have just got shook up a bit (was very little, but enough to notice). Now this (Monday)morning it is clear to see that this jug is actively fermenting.
I have heard many times that wild yeast make the best cider but can be hard to start, not a problem here.. My question is about the chances of a bacterial infection if I just go ahead with this untreated cider. Obviously treating the fermenting gallon will stop fermentation, but should I treat the other 3 gallons before mixing? Should I treat all 4, and just restart it with yeast? Also I just cracked the lid briefly on this fermenting gallon in hopes it would survive until I return from work, was this a bad idea? possibly allowing more contaminants into the mix?
Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.