Cider from apple concentrate

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redpaddy

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Hi going to attempt for the first time brewing cider from apple concentrate in an 8 gallon drum. First time trying this so any help would be appreciated. Will it brew ok in such a big volume, what sugar amounts would be best added and after decanting how long before drinking. Thanks
 

jseyfert3

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I'm preparing to check the gravity of my first batch of cider and if done, taste and keg it tonight or tomorrow. So, I'm new. But my understanding is:
in an 8 gallon drum. First time trying this so any help would be appreciated. Will it brew ok in such a big volume
It will ferment in any size container. Some ferment in open-topped containers for the first vigorous part of fermentation (but that requires closing after the vigorous part is finished.

I think if you want to ferment and then let it age in the same container what matters is the ratio of batch size to container size, not ultimate container size. For example, a number of people will ferment in carboys with just enough space for foam, then not touch it and let it age in the same carboy rather than racking to another container. If you're doing something like a 6 gallon batch in a 6.5 gallon carboy that is fine (I did several cups short of 6 gallons in a 6 gallon carboy), but doing ferment and age of a 4 gallon batch in an 8 gallon container probably wouldn't work. You could ferment in the 8 gallon and rack to a smaller container after the early fermentation slows down though. Make sense?

Also, as an aside, I toured Jack Daniels once. They ferment in something like 20,000 gallon containers, so big containers don't make a difference. It's how full they are filled and what your intention is for fermenting vs aging.

what sugar amounts would be best added
That depends on what ABV you want. Most apple juice ferments out to about 6% ABV I believe with no added sugar. Adding sugar only increases the ABV of the finished fermentation. Going too high in ABV can create harsh flavors that require additional aging to mellow out.

Adding sugar does not make the cider sweeter, unless you ferment, add stuff to stop yeast activity, and add sugar after that, or stop the fermentation before it finishes. In the absence of this type activities, all sugar added will be converted to alcohol, so more sugar = more alcohol.

after decanting how long before drinking
Decanting is not a term I've seen in regards to fermentation. You have racking, which is when you siphon from one container into another container, and you have bottling, when you fill individual bottles that you will later drink from.

Racking is used primarily for clarifying. Depending how clear you want it and the type of yeast and juice used, you very likely will not rack at all, but ferment and age (if desired) in the same container, and bottle after aging.

From what I've seen, most people age in a carboy or similar container, and after bottling, it's ready to drink immediately if still and if sugar is added to carbonate the bottles they will take a few weeks to build up carbonation after bottling, but otherwise it's generally aged in a large container and ready to drink immediately after bottling.

Hope this helps!
 

CKuhns

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Look at Yoopers Cider for Beginners at the top of the sticky. Its basically the same process for cider from concentrate without the Campden tablets (Sulfite).
 
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redpaddy

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I'm preparing to check the gravity of my first batch of cider and if done, taste and keg it tonight or tomorrow. So, I'm new. But my understanding is:

It will ferment in any size container. Some ferment in open-topped containers for the first vigorous part of fermentation (but that requires closing after the vigorous part is finished.

I think if you want to ferment and then let it age in the same container what matters is the ratio of batch size to container size, not ultimate container size. For example, a number of people will ferment in carboys with just enough space for foam, then not touch it and let it age in the same carboy rather than racking to another container. If you're doing something like a 6 gallon batch in a 6.5 gallon carboy that is fine (I did several cups short of 6 gallons in a 6 gallon carboy), but doing ferment and age of a 4 gallon batch in an 8 gallon container probably wouldn't work. You could ferment in the 8 gallon and rack to a smaller container after the early fermentation slows down though. Make sense?

Also, as an aside, I toured Jack Daniels once. They ferment in something like 20,000 gallon containers, so big containers don't make a difference. It's how full they are filled and what your intention is for fermenting vs aging.


That depends on what ABV you want. Most apple juice ferments out to about 6% ABV I believe with no added sugar. Adding sugar only increases the ABV of the finished fermentation. Going too high in ABV can create harsh flavors that require additional aging to mellow out.

Adding sugar does not make the cider sweeter, unless you ferment, add stuff to stop yeast activity, and add sugar after that, or stop the fermentation before it finishes. In the absence of this type activities, all sugar added will be converted to alcohol, so more sugar = more alcohol.


Decanting is not a term I've seen in regards to fermentation. You have racking, which is when you siphon from one container into another container, and you have bottling, when you fill individual bottles that you will later drink from.

Racking is used primarily for clarifying. Depending how clear you want it and the type of yeast and juice used, you very likely will not rack at all, but ferment and age (if desired) in the same container, and bottle after aging.

From what I've seen, most people age in a carboy or similar container, and after bottling, it's ready to drink immediately if still and if sugar is added to carbonate the bottles they will take a few weeks to build up carbonation after bottling, but otherwise it's generally aged in a large container and ready to drink immediately after bottling.

Hope this helps!
Many thanks for your advice. Lots of information. I'll post the outcome
 

bracconiere

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what concentrate? i'd shoot for 5 gallons of 1.060, because i keg, and that's just my taste.....it could oxidize if you don't have an air tight seal, or better said exit only....but the co2 during fermentation i would imagine clears out the head space.......
 
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