Immposible OG?

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Virginia_Ranger

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So I am using my Tilt as the hydrometer, I was reading 1.056 with apple juice, concentrate, pectal, acid blend, and yeast nutrients. then right before pitching I aerated everything with a vigorous stir pitched the yeast, closed the lid and my OG then became 0.987. Did I just screw my Tilt up with the stir (never had that happen when brewing beer) or is this actually possible and I have made some dire mistake elsewhere?
 

bernardsmith

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Never used a Tilt but a gravity reading of less than 1.000 suggests that there is no sugar in your must. If this was before pitching and if you know that the apple juice was not self fermenting then the Tilt reading must be in error. Check the gravity again.
As to the addition of acid blend before fermentation has ended that confuses me a little: that's a bit like someone adding salt to a dish that you have carefully cooked and before they have even tasted it. Why add acid blend to apple must before you know the TA when the fermentation has ended? Sure, the cider may need more zip but it may also be tart enough without any added acids. But apart from all that adding acids to a must before the yeast has done their job simply adds stress to the yeast. Cannot see any good reason to stress your yeast unless you are a bit of a masochist and enjoy the stress the yeast then give you in return. :no:
 
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Virginia_Ranger

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Thanks for the insight, this is my first cider and I was just following a how to and it was saying if you were using store brought juice for flavor to add this acid blend in the step before pitching the yeast. Since it sounding like it may not have been the best how to.... any other general recommendation once its done fermenting on getting the "taste" I want. I am just looking for a medium sweet, medium dry cider. Thanks!
 

bmd2k1

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Sure sounds like a malfunction...can ya take it out...reset it and toss it back in?
 
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Virginia_Ranger

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As we suspected the Tilt had just lost its mind. I got brave enough to sanitize a spoon and scoop it out, reset it and the SG readings are normal now and its happily fermenting. As for "back sweeting" I am open to suggestions; what I have read is either Stevia or Sugar Alchools of some sorts are what should be used. Thanks!
 

bernardsmith

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Best way to back sweeten is to allow the yeast to fully ferment the cider bone dry, then rack, and then add BOTH K-meta and K-sorbate. In tandem these two can inhibit refermentation. You can then add any kind of sugar to back sweeten. The cider should be fully stabilized and the yeast remaining should not be able to treat the added sugar as fermentable.
 
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