Man, I love Apfelwein

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balrog

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Simplistically, you really can mix the juice, any additional sugar (I sometimes add very little but I prefer 6% rather than 9% end product) and yeast (and nutrient if you like, it should help with the rhino farts but I use activated charcoal integrated above airlock as a RFS*) and then walk away from it for 8 weeks as long as it's room temp and not too cold to slow/stop the yeast. Once it's clear, **THEN** maybe do a test, but by the time it clears, I keg it, and measure, and it's always .999 or so.


*Rhino Fart Scrubber
 

RackEmUp

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I let it go a little longer, it really will get it VERY close to 1.000 and it will go crystal clear. THen I bottle/keg knowing therre is no residual sugar to add to the priming sugar I want, so I have a better chance getting the carbonation I want and not having too much carbonation. 1.018 would make me nervous.
Thanks for the advice.
I'll let it go for another week or two and come back with an update.
 

thefojizzle

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774659EA-955C-4685-A5E2-92ED7FA2F952.jpeg
774659EA-955C-4685-A5E2-92ED7FA2F952.jpeg
Hi guys, so I’ve made this in the past but it’s been A LONG time. Just wondering….I just tested with my hydrometer and it’s showing this. Is that gonna be good enough? I can’t remember what it was last time I did this to compare. In the past it’s been perfect. Just wanna make sure. If it’s not…how can I boost that abv? I did everything according to the recipe. It only bubbled….slowly…for a couple of days. It’s been warm here in SoCal, so it’s not cause of temp. Thanks ahead of time
 

mullet6577

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You're likely going to need a different hydrometer

According to Midwest Supplies, in regard to a Tralle hydrometer (which is what you have):

"This Proof and Tralle Hydrometer is a professional grade hydrometer that has a scale that goes to 200 proof. It is used to calculate proof in higher alcoholic beverages as it is not accurate for lower alcohol products like beer or wine.

Note: NOT FOR USE WITH BEER OR WINE. "
 

thefojizzle

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Thank you for the reply. I do distill whiskey and vodka. That’s why I have that one. I have used it in the past for this brew but as
I remember it showed 10% and now it’s equal when I put water in there. So not sure. Was hoping for some “yeah ur good! Looks like it’s higher than it even should be!” Or “Thai is how u can beef up that abv without screwing up flavor”
Any advise on what kind of hydrometer I should use? Thank u
 

marc1

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Thank you for the reply. I do distill whiskey and vodka. That’s why I have that one. I have used it in the past for this brew but as
I remember it showed 10% and now it’s equal when I put water in there. So not sure. Was hoping for some “yeah ur good! Looks like it’s higher than it even should be!” Or “Thai is how u can beef up that abv without screwing up flavor”
Any advise on what kind of hydrometer I should use? Thank u
You want a hydrometer that can measure specific gravity.

There are generic ones like this with a large range:

And ones made that are easier to read at specific ranges, but are more expensive and only work for those ranges:

And if you've got money to burn you could try one of these:
:mug:
 

squibload

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I've spent days reading from the start and I'm up to post 1640.
Have a 3-gal. batch using EC-1118, scaled down EdWort's original recipe using TreeTop juice (they only had 7 half-gal. bottles).
Added pectic enzyme at start.
Of course it overflowed the bubbler! Cleaned that up.
Here are a couple vids, well-organized bubbles as I expected, but I've never seen "sprites" before! Hope this works...
 

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squibload

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Side notes:
Smells great, never had rhino fart condition with the EC-1118.
OG 1.065 or so, forgot to correct for temp. Room temp 68° to 70°F.
Had positive CO2 pressure 4 hours after pitching yeast, airlock bubbles within 12 hours.
Bubble vid is from day 2, noticed sprites day 3.
Did an "emergency" rack night of day 2, was using an old 3-gal. water bottle from the Water Store, we used to buy RO water before I installed an undersink system.
Read about the Better Bottle, started reading about "recycle numbers".
Checked my bottle, it had #7 and said "other". Also "water only".
Apparently that category includes all kinds of plastics, fiberglass, etc.
Maybe even nuclear wasted imported from Mars, I don't know.
Alcohol level was low at that point so I'm not too worried, will let you know if my head falls off.
It's now in a 5-gal. glass carboy, have several from the '70s-'80s.
Almost bought a 3-gal. Better Bottle but 5 makes more sense if it's gonna try to escape anyway, and I have plenty of those.
Never thought I'd be caught brewing a wine but I'm part German so I claim the right to make Apfelwein. Just don't tell anybody... :>)
 

squibload

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PS: upon further reading (I'm up to post 1760) I found reference to the "blue bottles"
(water bottles), seems the concern is they are permeable to O2. I figured there was no danger or they wouldn't be used for drinking water. Still thinking of getting a Better Bottle, or the Fermonster from the LHBS. The more carboys the better...

PPS: found the recycle number 7 (in a triangle) on a drilled stopper I just bought at the LHBS, also had an 8 for size. Guess it can't be that bad.
 
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Blacksmith1

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If you are racking into then out of it it won't matter at all as your must won't spend enough time in it to matter. For long term secondaries or aging I recommend getting something food grade just to be safe. If you are in California it won't matter, as everything in California causes cancer anyway.
 

squibload

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Hey, I thought I was Mr. Cheap!

Thanks, I'll try to stay outta there.

I kinda figured to just use a 5 gal if I make any more apfelwein, it foamed up thru the airlock pretty good. Had a tshirt on it & plastic under so no biggie.
I like the 3 gal batch size though so I could use the water jug.

Guess I could try Ed's (required!) Montrachet, I use yeast energizer anyway so shouldn't get gassed outta the house. Sounds like maybe that yeast doesn't go so crazy. Sure hope I like the stuff. A freind considers herself a wine conneseur (sp?) so I'll throw a bottle at her in a couple months, my batch is still pumpin out CO2.

(Edit: conneiseur, I left out the i.)
 
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squibload

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Hope mine looks that good. I already started another batch just 'cause it smells so good. 5 gal. this time. Long blowoff tube just in case, but this batch is behavin itself.
Sittin over there bubbling almost 1 per second. Hope I like the stuff.
 

balrog

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Hope mine looks that good. I already started another batch just 'cause it smells so good. 5 gal. this time. Long blowoff tube just in case, but this batch is behavin itself.
Sittin over there bubbling almost 1 per second. Hope I like the stuff.
That was brewed 23 Jan 2021, bottled 06 Mar 2021, sat in basement 7 months.
Plenty settling time for clarity.
It was ready by April/May.
 

squibload

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This might almost be more suited for the "drunken ramblings" thread, but here goes:

I'm gonna rack the current batch of AW into a 5 gal carboy to free up my 7.5 gal acid bottle BUT
I want to avoid exposure to O2, ritght? I figured the AW is steadily pumping out CO2
so I stuck the (sanitized) lower end of the blowoff tube (which never got any blowoff,
this batch has a strong ferment going but didn't reach the neck) into the 5 gal bottle.

Might make a difference. It's probably full of CO2 by now but figured to give it plenty of time.
It's been bloopin in the blowoff bottle like, well, have you ever been in a room with a large mechanical clock?
It's faster than 1 bloop per second now but regular. Got up to 75° in here today, maybe that's it.

Anyway if I rack it into secondary it will save me from buying a PET carboy. I want one but don't need one.
So I'm sittin here thinkin I should just throw 5 more gallons of apple juice into the carboy but that would defeat
the purpose of emptying it for the (late) Octoberfest batch...

Dang you EdWort! I'm hooked already and I haven't even tasted the stuff.
 

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GrogNerd

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welcome to the hobbyobsession

This might almost be more suited for the "drunken ramblings" thread, but here goes:

I'm gonna rack the current batch of AW into a 5 gal carboy to free up my 7.5 gal acid bottle BUT
I want to avoid exposure to O2, ritght? I figured the AW is steadily pumping out CO2
so I stuck the (sanitized) lower end of the blowoff tube (which never got any blowoff,
this batch has a strong ferment going but didn't reach the neck) into the 5 gal bottle.

Might make a difference. It's probably full of CO2 by now but figured to give it plenty of time.
It's been bloopin in the blowoff bottle like, well, have you ever been in a room with a large mechanical clock?
It's faster than 1 bloop per second now but regular. Got up to 75° in here today, maybe that's it.

Anyway if I rack it into secondary it will save me from buying a PET carboy. I want one but don't need one.
So I'm sittin here thinkin I should just throw 5 more gallons of apple juice into the carboy but that would defeat
the purpose of emptying it for the (late) Octoberfest batch...

Dang you EdWort! I'm hooked already and I haven't even tasted the stuff.
 

balrog

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I figured the AW is steadily pumping out CO2
Yes-ish.

If I am correctly reading what you said you did, and took a blowoff that was formerly under liquid, and simply moved it to a clean, sanitized 5 gal container (full of air with N2, O2, etc) it really depends on where in the apfewein ferment you were as to whether you have sufficiently purged the 5 gal container of CO2. At the end of a week from pitch, give or take a day, there is not a lot of sugar left to convert to alcohol and CO2 and so CO2 production would be slight. @doug293cz did an epic treatise/manifesto on how the amount of a standard 5gal batch of beer would be roughly enough in its entirety to purge a 5 gallon vessel. The tail end of said ferment of apfelwein might indeed displace some air in the empty 5 gal container but might not be enough gas flow to keep O2 mixing if the top of the 5 gal container is not stoppered and subsequently routed to a blowoff jar situation.

I don't mean harsh anyone's vibe, but I thought you should be aware of some things.
 

squibload

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Thanks, I'll check that link.
Well it was nowhere near completion, only 3 days in, going strong.
I only wanted to free up the big carboy.
And I never should have done it.
About 45 min. to an hour after I racked it to a 5 gal. it grew legs & tried to escape.
Had a bubbler on the top, it foamed right through that. I had a trashbag around the bottom
for minor spills, that caught most of it until I bumped it while trying to set up the blowoff tube.
Maybe half a pint went on the carpet.
Then while lookin for a can of beans or something to weigh down the tube, I found
a can of mandarin oranges that had burst. More cleanup. Threw out some old stuff too.

So early in the morning I figured I'd look at the AW one more time, it was all calm and peaceful.
Still a strong ferment going on but blowoff tube not necessary.
I didn't fall for that, left the blowoff on there & went to bed.

The Spirits of the Apfelwein are vengeful.

PS: walking quickly into the dark kitchen to get the tube and a towel I kicked the
big carboy full of Oxiclean solution. Lucky I was wearing my protective house slippers.
 
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squibload

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My 1st apfelwein is clearing! Looks purty but only been in there less than a month.
I'll let it stay for a while.
2nd batch has calmed down but still pretty active, removed blowoff, replaced bubbler.
About 12 sec. per bubble.

The next batch is in the primary but wasn't an Octoberfest, leftover brew kit in a black
shopping bag turned out to be an Old Ale. Appropriate name since it's been on the shelf
more than 2 years. I sniffed the grains & hops, even tasted the LMEs, seemed OK.
It's now scenting the room with hop fragrance, Kent Goldings was the final (aromatic?).

Glad I looked in here at HBT, this AW thread got me goin again, feels good to be brewing.
Have 2 batches of ale carbing/conditioning, & 2 AWs fermenting. Good thing I have a
couple hundred clean beer bottles in the basement! 🍻
 
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