Film yeast in the cider barrel

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Nov 24, 2017
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I have 198 gallons of cider fermenting in 6 carboys, 2 brandy barrels, and one plastic barrel. The last pressing was used to fill the plastic barrel, and by the time I got it in the basement, I was exhausted from cidermaking and had to attend to a bunch of other things in my life. As a result, I neglected the plastic barrel. I didnt have the right size bung for the barrel so air was getting in, and I didnt even pitch the yeast for about 10 days. Yes, I know, the mismanagement of my stash of liquid gold was a crime.

On day 10, when I finally was able to think about my cider, I was looking at it and I realized it had a film yeast on top. The cider still tastes delicious anyway, so I fished off the bubbly film with a racking cane and pitch the Safale US-04 ale yeast, anyway. Sorry, I didnt get a pic of the film.

Now, I realize that what I should have done is sulfite the cider before pitching any yeast, wait a day or two, then pitch my yeast. I never sulfite my ciders, so I didnt even consider that at the time.

It was yesterday that I fished off the film and pitched the yeast. Should the beer yeast outcompete the film yeast? By correctly putting the airlock and keeping any oxygen out, will that be enough to keep the film yeast at bay? Should I sulfite the cider anyway? If so, will I need to repitch the ale yeast again afterwards? I was hoping not to pitch the ale yeast again becuase because the safale us-04 yeasts are like $4 per packet, and with 55 gallons of cider, it adds up.