questions before i start some cider makin

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blitzgp

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i think im gonna dabble in some cider making while i wait to get my beer making equipment setup, but i have a few questions

yeast: are temps ok to get a little warmer because the fruity esters will most likely compliment the fruitiness of the cider? and also, can i be less picky about the type of yeast?

ingredients: i will probably only use raw ingredients, and just experiment with different fruit combinations. i was going to puree the ingredients, then add some sugar and ferment. should i strain/press the puree before i ferment, or should i worry about filtering afterwards? i would prefer a higher efficiency/alcohol content over clarity, but i have no clue what im getting into here ;p

thanks for any info

edit: i am only adding sugar to make up for lack of sweetness in the fruit, im pretty much just getting rid of all my old off season fruit that is not very sweet
 

CandleWineProject

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Use a champange like yeast, but white wine yeasts can be okay. Cooler temps are better to get the fruity esters.

The idea of puree sounds like fruit wine techniques. Don't do it with apples - it will be a horrible horrible mess. There is a reason the industry does crush and press rather than ferment on puree, or even puree and press. For starters, you won't get the solids and the liquids to separate, ever. You might have problems with the pectin turning it to jam. You might just end up with hard applesauce.

Having a higher alcohol has no correlation to clarity. You can have both, but not with puree.

Just note that sugar hides flaws in fruit, but alcohol makes it stand out. You might have to backsweeten to bring it back in balance.
 

gratus fermentatio

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i think im gonna dabble in some cider making while i wait to get my beer making equipment setup, but i have a few questions

yeast: are temps ok to get a little warmer because the fruity esters will most likely compliment the fruitiness of the cider? and also, can i be less picky about the type of yeast?

ingredients: i will probably only use raw ingredients, and just experiment with different fruit combinations. i was going to puree the ingredients, then add some sugar and ferment. should i strain/press the puree before i ferment, or should i worry about filtering afterwards? i would prefer a higher efficiency/alcohol content over clarity, but i have no clue what im getting into here ;p

thanks for any info

edit: i am only adding sugar to make up for lack of sweetness in the fruit, im pretty much just getting rid of all my old off season fruit that is not very sweet
You'll get different results with different yeast strains & often with different temps too. Part of the fun is trying different yeasts as well as different fruits/juices. You might find these links useful:

http://winemaking.jackkeller.net/strains.asp

and

http://***********/resources/yeast

I use mostly juice when I make cider/wine, but I have also used crushed fruit, sliced fruit & puree. A lot of people will put the fruit in a muslin or mesh bag while the yeast work on it, this helps to keep things tidy & eliminate undue waste. Fermenting on puree can give you good results, but often means much more waste.

Adding sugar to a fermentation doesn't sweeten it, it just gives the yeast more to eat & will result in higher ABV. If you want your end product to be sweeter, you'll have to either backsweeten after fermentation, or caculate the yeasts alcohol tolerance & feed it to that point while hoping it doesn't peter out early. I wouldn't worry about filtering, time & gravity are on your side & will usually work pretty well for you & it should clear on it's own just fine. Regards, GF.
 
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blitzgp

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so after 3 weeks, i ended up transfering to a secondary and started a second batch. i am only working with 1 gal batches atm, but i may move onto 5 gallon batches depending how good blackberry season is to me.

I ended up using puree, but it wasnt as bad as i though it would be. i used apples, watermelon, pears, and peaches for the first batch, and apples, blueberries, strawberries and pears for the second batch.

transfering over i figured i would lose cleanliness straining the puree, so i just washed my hands with 70% isopropyl and did a rinse afterwards. i used some nylon lint free cloth, washed in alcohol and freshwater rinse.

i went from a full gallon to about 2/3 of a gallon, but i spilled a lot straining.

all in all, it smells pretty good, and after straining, looks drinkable. gonna wait a week or two and then bottle it. probably lightly carbonate it and maybe add a little bit of splenda when i taste it while bottling.

all in all its been a satisfying pre-brewing expirament
 
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blitzgp

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not yet. im not sure if it was because i used puree, but the yeast didnt flocculate or whatever its called when they sink out of solution when theyre done. after a few days (im already starting to see a yeast layer on the bottom after a few days) i will give her a try.
 
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blitzgp

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So I bottled my first batch. Tasting it, it tastes like sour watered down fruit, lol. I wish I used gravities though, cause it tastes like it has a lot of kick. I used a tsp of sugar and a tablespoon of slenda in 40oz bottles. I also tried adding a cup of sugar to the 2nd batch in the secondary, but im not sure whats gonna happen there. I havent had any activity, but I am getting a little krausen ring, so theres still a little bit of activity, just not what I would expect for adding that much sugar. I also started a thierd batch using just a melon fruit salad I had, but it came out real wierd. The color from the watermelon leeched out into this red paste like substance, and it didnt smell sweet at all. I expect it to be a failure, so I added 2 cups of sugar.
 
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