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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Cider Forum > My first cider, a few questions for the pros
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Old 11-16-2013, 09:40 PM   #1
lefty23
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Default My first cider, a few questions for the pros

Hi everyone, I've been brewing for a few years now but this was my first real attempt at a cider/cyser and I was hoping you could help me out with a few things.

First: I just transferred my cider to the secondary yesterday and I've decided I want to spice it up a bit. How do you recommend I sterilize cinnamon sticks or similar spices before adding them to my secondary fermenter? Is sterilization necessary or recommended at this stage?

Second: I used super-rich cider straight from the orchard and 6lbs of honey straight from a bee farm. The honey was like $45, which I didn't mind paying because I want this cider to be the bees knees, so to speak. But after tasting it yesterday it turned out much stronger than I had expected. I used safeale 05, so I knew it would be strong, but I thought there would still be a good amount of residual sweetness and I just didn't taste it. Once it conditions and the alcohol heat mellows a bit, will some of that honey flavor come through, or should I just use cheap store bought honey for fermentation and post-sweeten with the expensive stuff next time?

Any help or suggestions are appreciated, thank you in advance for your help and for welcoming me into your community.


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Old 11-16-2013, 10:10 PM   #2
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Yep, save the xpensive stuff for backsweetening. Safale can chew through a lot of sugar-up to 13%+.

You actually made a cyser and you should probably be able to taste a little bit of the honey flavor. If you age it appropriately more mead flavor will come through.

You made a good choice on your yeast. If you think 05 tastes hot wait till you make/try edworts applewine with lalvin ec1118.


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Old 11-16-2013, 10:20 PM   #3
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Yeast doesn't much care how much you got sucker for the sugar they consume. Always remember that.
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Old 11-17-2013, 12:33 AM   #4
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I made a fall cider with nutmeg ginger and cinnamon. What I did was take a pot, boil water and ad spices. Boil for a few minutes and it will extract flavor and sterilize. Then I added it all to the primary and when its done rack to secondary. This is the first time doing it and I feel the ginger overpowered it. I'm actually drinking one now, its still pretty good.

I would only use 2 sticks for no more then five minutes boil.
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Old 11-17-2013, 02:57 AM   #5
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How much of each spice did you use Jon112?
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Old 11-17-2013, 05:08 PM   #6
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I use ground cinnamon, and nutmeg and cloves, but sticks can be very easy t o use. Try one stick, and taste after a week or so. The spice flavors will intensify over time, so taste it every 3 to 4 days and rack off or remove the cinnamon when you reach your desired level.

:-)
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Old 11-17-2013, 09:57 PM   #7
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Spicing is a type of preserving so Bacteria doesn't really live in them, which means you don't need to worry about it contaminating your brew
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Old 11-18-2013, 06:24 PM   #8
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This is all extremely helpful, thank you so much to all of you.


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