Quantcast

Scared of Pasturizing.

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

LavransAUG

Member
Joined
Aug 6, 2020
Messages
11
Reaction score
0
Hello. I am going to pasturize my deliscious cider batch so it becomes semi-sweet and sparkling. I used lalvin ec 1118 champagne yeast and that is what I am worried about. I wonder if lalvin is going to ferment too fast and make a bottle bomb in the night I bottle it. Is this somethong I need to worry about? Is this a danger? Thanks.
 

Chalkyt

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Apr 19, 2017
Messages
408
Reaction score
210
Location
Snowy Mountains, Australia
There have been a lot of posts recently about pasteurising, from me and others, so do some searches. Assuming you are thinking about heat pasteurising, the basic things you need to be aware of are...

EC1118 yeast can ferment quite quickly but it should typically take over a week or so to get the cider from an OG of 1.060 down to a typical semi-sweet cider SG level so you should have plenty of time to monitor fermentation progress. "Semi-sweet" is a matter of taste and for you could be at a FG of anything from 1.015 to 1.010.

For a semi sweet cider you will need to bottle at something like 0.005 above your desired finished SG (i.e. work on about 1 volume of CO2 per 0.002 change in SG). Around 2 - 3 volumes of CO2 is normal "sparkling" carbonation.

However if you bottle around 1.015 and fail to fully pasteurise (i.e. fail to kill the yeast) such that the cider continues to ferment down to 1.000, then you will generate over 300psi which almost certainly guarantees a bottle bomb. So you are better to "overpasteurise" than "underpasteurise".

You should get effective pasteurisation at a temperature of around 70c if you hold the bottles at this temperature for 10 minutes then let them cool down. See Pappers post at the top of the forum as a guide to an effective heat pasteurisation method. By the time the cider has fermented down to your bottling level its fermentation rate should be less than 0.005 per day so the chance of an "overnight bomb" is remote.

Attached is a pdf file which covers a lot of this in detail and which might help. It really isn't as scary as it sounds as long as you follow the "rules".

Have fun!
 

Attachments

Rick Stephens

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 9, 2020
Messages
89
Reaction score
38
Location
Idaho
I second the let it finish primary.

I just did a batch that turned out excellent that way - first time pasteurizing for me. I used 1116 yeast, which is very similar in timing to your 1118. I was worried I couldn't catch it right during primary. Plus, if you try and catch it and bottle during primary, you have to test gravity very often and then you still have to watch carbonation. Makes for a lot of checking and rechecking. Too much work for me. Finishing, then sweetening and bottling is the way to go.

The faster champagne yeasts will be faster to build up carb after bottling, so need to observe that fairly closely. Use a plastic coke bottle for that, then open a couple bottles when you get close. You can immediately recap, or drink that bottle. It took only about 4 days for me to reach my happy spot level of carbonation after bottling at 1.020. I was getting nervous at the end that I didn't want to overshoot. In hindsight, I think I could have waited an entire day more and not had a problem. A little closer to sparkling is possible with the heavy bottles I was using. But I had a few 12 ounce regular beer bottle in the batch and they came through perfectly, as well.
 

Chalkyt

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Apr 19, 2017
Messages
408
Reaction score
210
Location
Snowy Mountains, Australia
What Maylar and Rick say is correct, it is an easier process to ferment fully then back sweeten with enough sugar, juice, AJC or whatever to take the cider back up to the sweetness level that you want, plus a bit to be consumed by the carbonation process.

I try to capture the "sweet point" on the way down in order to keep as much "appleyness" because I understand that some of the apple nuances get "blown off" as the SG approaches 1.000. I must say that I haven't really noticed any difference between the two processes in this regard, so the flavour "blow off" bit might just be a bit of folklore.

Once the cider is bottled, I use a test bottle fitted with a pressure gauge to monitor carbonation buildup in order to pick the right point to pasteurise. This is just a sophisticated alternative to Rick's coke bottle approach which I have also used. The only downside that I can see with the "coke bottle" method is that you do need to monitor the buildup of firmness (it takes a while). You need to know when it first reaches normal soda/coke firmness, because with excess pressure (i.e. let the carbonation go on too long to something like 4 volumes which would be around 200 psi at pasteurisation temperature) the coke bottle will still feel firm. The gauge approach lets you know if the pressure is right for the carbonation that you want, but it is probably only worth the trouble if you plan to do a lot of carbonating. Maylar has a post on making a pressure gauge test bottle... and as Rick says elsewhere, you can drink the test bottle. (I do for "quality control"!)

I don't know what bottles you are using, but pasteurising at 70C with 2.5 volumes of CO2 will generate around 125psi pressure before it returns to something like 30 -45 psi when the bottles cool down. Normal 12 oz beer bottles are batch tested at between 200 and 250psi. Within any batch of bottles there will be some that are under-spec by up to 20% so any "normal" bottles should comfortably handle 125psi for the short pasteurisation period without bottle bombs.

As with anything of this nature it is wise to wear protection equipment such as gloves, goggles, etc because of the potential bottle pressure when pasteurising.
 

Raptor99

Active Member
Joined
Jun 25, 2020
Messages
31
Reaction score
11
I take a simple approach. Let the cider ferment completely dry, then add just enough sugar for the carbonation. Since I want a little bit of sweetness as well I add a small amount of Swerve, which is a natural non-fermentable sweetener. That way I can get the carbonation and sweetness right without having to guess exactly how much sugar the yeast will eat.

Based on a suggestion I read somewhere, after bottling I put my bottles in a big plastic bin with a lid for a few weeks. After 2 weeks, I open a bottle and see if the carbonation level is about right. Now I have it fairly well dialed in, so I know how much sugar to add to each batch. No bottle bombs so far!

I remember from chemistry class that the solubility of gasses in water increases as the temperature decreases. That is the opposite to what happens with the solubility of most solids. So chilled cider can hold more CO2 in the liquid than warm cider. That means that it will foam up more if it is warm. I test my cider chilled. I figure that if the amount of foam in the glass is similar to what I would see in a beer then it is about right. That is my very unscientific way to handle it.
 
OP
L

LavransAUG

Member
Joined
Aug 6, 2020
Messages
11
Reaction score
0
Thanks for the answers. I want to bottle pasturize because I don’t want my cider coming up to 16% abv. I use swing top beer bottles 500 ml so I think it woll handle a lot pf pressure. :D
 

Chalkyt

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Apr 19, 2017
Messages
408
Reaction score
210
Location
Snowy Mountains, Australia
Be aware that swing top bottle seals can leak pressure at around 70-80 psi (according to Grolsch, and Claude Jolicoeur mentions this in his book). This is not always, but sometimes.

The leaking isn't instantaneous but I noticed bubbles rising in the water at this sort of pressure when I originally had the Grolsch bottle and pressure gauge in with bottles being heat pasteurised. So, you may lose some carbonation if your pasteurisation temperature does develop 125psi or so. It may recover somewhat to a lower carbonation level when the bottles cool down. To minimise the effect, work with a low pasteurising temperature and remove the bottles once the desired temperture is reached. Most of the pasteurising takes place from the residual heat while the bottles are cooling down.
 
Top