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Old 01-18-2009, 10:52 PM   #1
isipwater
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Jan 2009
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Hello,

I need help with my first batch of hard cider.

I am making one 5 gallon batch of cider from a variety of freshly picked apples. I pasteurized the juice on my kitchen stove with a big pot. After the juice cooled I added 2 packs of wine yeast from my local homebrew store. Fermentation occurred.

I am now ready to add corn sugar to carbonate and bottle but I have a problem. The cider is alcoholic but it has a distict lemon taste and does not have hardley any apple flavor.

1) Do you know why I might be having this lemon taste problem?

2) Do you have any suggestions on how to fix the lemon flavor before bottling?

I would really hate to see this 5 gallons of fresh cider that I pressed myself go to waste.

Thanks for your help.

Ryan

 
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Old 01-18-2009, 11:09 PM   #2
Yooper
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Is it lemony as it tart? Or lemony as in vinegary?

Try this- take out a sample of the cider and stir in some sugar or honey and taste it. Do it a few times, adding a little bit at a time, so you can see if it's simply "tart" (dry cider) or if might not improve with some sweetening (perhaps infected).

Dry cider is an acquired taste, although it mellows significantly in the bottle. You can either bottle it as is and see how you like it, or sweeten it. The issue is that if you sweeten it, you must stabilize the cider so that the yeast doesn't eat the sugar and cause bottle bombs. That means you won't be able to carbonate it. It's easy to make a still dry cider, a still sweetened cider, or a still sweetened cider. It's harder to make a carbonated sweet cider.

One thought is to use some non-fermentable sweetener, like lactose, or splenda (not the kind with real sugar, just the splenda) and see if that makes it taste better. If you like it, you can add some to taste, and then still bottle carb it. (I don't like artificial sweeteners, though, but some people do).

I really think what you're tasting is a young dry cider.
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Old 01-18-2009, 11:18 PM   #3
Stef1966
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Will follow up the evolution of this thread, been wanting to try my hands at cider for a while, but i don't want it to taste awful or having to waste it either.
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Old 01-19-2009, 03:33 AM   #4
isipwater
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Jan 2009
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It has a lemon, not a vinegar taste to it. I really want to make it carbonated and am hoping that the lemon taste will mellow out. It was on the primary fermentor for 10 days and it has been on the secondary for 4 weeks.

1) How long do you think the lemon flavor will take to mellow once I bottle?

2) Can I add anything besides artificial sweeteners to change the cider flavor at this point? Perhaps cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg?

***************************************

Quote:
Originally Posted by YooperBrew View Post
Is it lemony as it tart? Or lemony as in vinegary?

Try this- take out a sample of the cider and stir in some sugar or honey and taste it. Do it a few times, adding a little bit at a time, so you can see if it's simply "tart" (dry cider) or if might not improve with some sweetening (perhaps infected).

Dry cider is an acquired taste, although it mellows significantly in the bottle. You can either bottle it as is and see how you like it, or sweeten it. The issue is that if you sweeten it, you must stabilize the cider so that the yeast doesn't eat the sugar and cause bottle bombs. That means you won't be able to carbonate it. It's easy to make a still dry cider, a still sweetened cider, or a still sweetened cider. It's harder to make a carbonated sweet cider.

One thought is to use some non-fermentable sweetener, like lactose, or splenda (not the kind with real sugar, just the splenda) and see if that makes it taste better. If you like it, you can add some to taste, and then still bottle carb it. (I don't like artificial sweeteners, though, but some people do).

I really think what you're tasting is a young dry cider.

 
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Old 01-19-2009, 05:42 AM   #5
lapaglia
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What type of yeast did you use?
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Old 01-19-2009, 11:29 PM   #6
isipwater
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Jan 2009
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The Yeast I used was:

Lalvin EC-1118,

a dry wine yeast, recommended by my local homebrew shop.

 
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Old 01-20-2009, 08:23 PM   #7
flyweed
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What type of container did you pastuerize in? was it Stainless steel, ceramic coated or??? I know this may sound silly, but do you or did you use any dish soap to wash anything and does your soap have a lemon scent to it? What type of container did you use for fermenting..you don't really go into these details.

Dan
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Old 01-20-2009, 09:11 PM   #8
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I kinda have the same feeling as Yooper on this, you may be tasting a young dry cider, especally at just about a month old, and extra-especially with the EC-1118 that stuff will dry out anything. Dry cider takes a while to mellow, I use ale yeast so it doesn't turn out as dry, and even then I let it sit at least 4 months after pitching before I even think about opening one.

As for adding different flavors, I really suggest against it for your first batch. Experiment with this once you understand how the yeast interacts with the juice brand, what kind of sugar you add (if any) etc.
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Old 01-20-2009, 10:45 PM   #9
Cydermon
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Jan 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Freezeblade View Post
I kinda have the same feeling as Yooper on this, you may be tasting a young dry cider, especally at just about a month old, and extra-especially with the EC-1118 that stuff will dry out anything. Dry cider takes a while to mellow, I use ale yeast so it doesn't turn out as dry, and even then I let it sit at least 4 months after pitching before I even think about opening one.

As for adding different flavors, I really suggest against it for your first batch. Experiment with this once you understand how the yeast interacts with the juice brand, what kind of sugar you add (if any) etc.
I used the EC-1118 yeast myself and now I'm a bit concerned that I am going to have to back sweeten to keep the pucker factor from getting too bad. Being this yeast appears to ferment faster than say the beer yeasts or even many wine yeast, how long do you normally let this primary before putting into your secondary to clear and mellow? My off gassing has slowed to about a bubble every 2 min so its not quite done yet but, I don't suspect it will take more than another week or two. (starting SG 1.065) 12 days in.

 
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Old 01-22-2009, 02:28 AM   #10
isipwater
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Jan 2009
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How should I proceed next?

1) Is it time to bottle?

2) Should I add more yeast before bottling? If so, should I continue with same type of yeast?

3) How long do you expect the mellowing to take?



Quote:
Originally Posted by Freezeblade View Post
I kinda have the same feeling as Yooper on this, you may be tasting a young dry cider, especally at just about a month old, and extra-especially with the EC-1118 that stuff will dry out anything. Dry cider takes a while to mellow, I use ale yeast so it doesn't turn out as dry, and even then I let it sit at least 4 months after pitching before I even think about opening one.

As for adding different flavors, I really suggest against it for your first batch. Experiment with this once you understand how the yeast interacts with the juice brand, what kind of sugar you add (if any) etc.

 
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