Seeking input on new cider brew lab layout

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Stretch_s

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Hello! After a couple of years of making cider spread across 4 rooms around the house (kitchen, laundry, spare bath, and garage), I am finally embarking on building out a dedicated space for cider making. I’m adding another garage stall which is below grade on the back wall so if i build a room in the back of the garage it should be well insulated with stable temps. This is a build~from~scratch, so I’ve got a lot of options. I know that for some of the layout features I will want to wait until I’m actually in the space to figure out the best and most efficient flow, but I need to be sure that things like plumbing, electrical, hvac, etc are well-planned before I get shovels in the dirt. The room will be about 6ft x 14ft, with a door entry at one end of the 14ft wall.

Here‘s my wish list thus far. I‘d love it if folks could weigh in with lessons learned in your own brew/ciderpressing rooms and share things that you are really glad you did, as well as features you wish you had included. And please include photos if you have them!

Cider lab wish list;
Floor drain
Deep sink
Range hood
Stainless steel soiled/dirty dish table
Coated concrete floors
Water filtration
Temp control
Ventilation/exterior venting
Tap fridge
Full sized fridge
‘Dog shower’ for rinsing grinder and press and general hosing down of gear

I’m still a very novice cider maker, but really enjoying it, hence my willingness to invest in a space for the long haul. But I obviously don’t want to screw it up by not really knowing what I don’t know yet! 🙂

Also, up to now I’ve only done carbonation naturally by priming with a sugar just prior to bottling, but I’d like to be able to do some forced carbonation in kegs as well. I have no idea what kind of equipment or space I need to plan for that yet as I’m just starting to research, so any advice would be most appreciated.

Thanks much in advance. Look forward to hearing ideas and seeing photos of what y’all have done!

Stretch
 

gregbathurst

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If you can, a bit of concrete and a tap just outside the door would be good for washing down the press and grinder. I think hosing down is easier outside. Those curved things you mount on the wall for hanging hoses to drain are very useful, I hang my hoses on a nail and they get kinked.
 

Raptor99

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I am working on plans to build out a wine/mead/cider making room. I posted about it on another forum, and there were many helpful comments. You can see them here: New Wine Room Design
 

doublejef

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I'm not sure how big is 6ftx14ft, if I Google it I get 1.8x4m
Anyway, cider marker always miss space so to win some you should add a shelf to store botlles (full and empty), apple bag or box,... and also a closed cast to store little material that need to stay protected by dust.
 

madscientist451

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The messy part of cider making is the crushing/grinding and then the pressing. I do those things outside before the really cold weather comes in so I can use the hose to wash everything down. So if I had a dedicated space for cider, I'd like a big door of some kind directly to the outside. I'd also want a concrete pad or wooden deck out there to work on. Inside, I'd want some way to store fermenters and a big work table next to the sink for bottling/kegging.
 
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Stretch_s

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I am working on plans to build out a wine/mead/cider making room. I posted about it on another forum, and there were many helpful comments. You can see them here: New Wine Room Design
Great, thanks! Very helpful post and I see that our projects and wish lists are quite similar. Nice to see the photos and other suggestions that were shared.

Have you started your build yet?
 
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Stretch_s

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The messy part of cider making is the crushing/grinding and then the pressing. I do those things outside before the really cold weather comes in so I can use the hose to wash everything down. So if I had a dedicated space for cider, I'd like a big door of some kind directly to the outside. I'd also want a concrete pad or wooden deck out there to work on. Inside, I'd want some way to store fermenters and a big work table next to the sink for bottling/kegging.
Thanks for the reply! Yes I agree that’s the messy part. We also typically do the grinding and pressing out on the driveway on a sunny fall day, and then just hose everything off. With my new space I will still have the same option, but we often store some apples to do a press into early winter, so I’m looking forward to having the option of a heated space too. I think i will be building in a shower-type enclosure in the corner of the room that will be tiled up the walls for about 5ft or so. I’ve got a hose bib in the garage that is also connected to the water heater, so I can howe everything down in the shower.
 
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Stretch_s

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I'm not sure how big is 6ftx14ft, if I Google it I get 1.8x4m
Anyway, cider marker always miss space so to win some you should add a shelf to store botlles (full and empty), apple bag or box,... and also a closed cast to store little material that need to stay protected by dust.
Yes, indeed! Plan to have lots of shelving to store empties and other supplies. Thx for the reply.
 

Raptor99

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Great, thanks! Very helpful post and I see that our projects and wish lists are quite similar. Nice to see the photos and other suggestions that were shared.

Have you started your build yet?

I haven't started yet, but hope to start soon. I'm planning on an 8 x 12 room. One of my top priorities is lots of counter space. If you could make your room 7-8 feet wide instead of 6 feet wide, you would have room for counters along both of the long walls. The sink and fridge also will need a space 2-3' deep, so they would take away some of the counter apace if you have a counter along only one wall.
 
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Stretch_s

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I haven't started yet, but hope to start soon. I'm planning on an 8 x 12 room. One of my top priorities is lots of counter space. If you could make your room 7-8 feet wide instead of 6 feet wide, you would have room for counters along both of the long walls. The sink and fridge also will need a space 2-3' deep, so they would take away some of the counter apace if you have a counter along only one wall.
.026+3.
Yes, I did have that thought, but the primary purpose of putting in the new garage stall was to be able to park my 20' long extended cab pickup in there, and if I take too much room for my cider room, the space will get pretty tight! I've used stainless steel fold-down counters in my other garage stall, and they work quite well, so I might consider that for this space as well. Then I can get them out of the way when doing grinding and pressing. Not sure if I will go this route yet, but here's a pic of them if you're interested
1644437812201.jpeg
 
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I am jealous of the space you have that can be dedicated to the process. As you progress in this, please update the thread; I'd love to see more!
 

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