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How to get started in Cider. The definitive(ish) guide to beginner&#39

Discussion in ''Non Beer' Brewing' started by Airgead, 11/5/13.

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  1. Tahoose

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    Posted 13/5/14
    Here you go.
    photo(1).JPG
     
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  2. Bax

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    Posted 14/5/14
    I'm back, still haven't picked up any yeast yet and that's been the only thing delaying me. Was going to buy an airlock to stick into the lid of a juice bottle, but decided it'll be easier to just run it into a blow off container instead using the existing lid.

    As I said, yeast is holding me back, but I noticed I have some standard coopers beer yeast sitting in the fridge door. I'm sure that I can use it, but will it be terrible?
     
  3. Mutaneer

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    Posted 14/5/14
    Just drop into your local HBS and get some champagne or white wine yeast, and some airlocks.
    geez, i've got a dozen of them kicking around somewhere
     
  4. Tahoose

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    Posted 14/5/14
    Forgot the airlock, gladwrap and rubber bands are your friends.
     
  5. Bax

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    Posted 14/5/14
    I was going to do it in the juice container, so I figured I'd need the blow off.

    But, what about the yeast?
     
  6. Tahoose

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    Posted 14/5/14
    Beer yeast will work, if your doing small batches. If your going to do a large batch and put a fair bit into it, it might be worth getting a cider yeast, wyeast4766 is a popular one.

    When you say juice containers do you mean the bottle that the juice comes in, if so pour 150ml or so out of the bottle, add yeast, glad wrap on top, rubber band to seal, it's about that easy.
     
  7. Airgead

    Ohhh... I can write anything I like here

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    Posted 15/5/14
    Ummm... yeah.... not so much for cider.

    Cider is more prone to oxidative damage than beer.

    Its OK for the initial ferment when there is positive co2 pressure but if you intend on letting it age for any length of time once fermentation stops, you really want to use something better.I'd still use an airlock though. They are what, 5 bucks at most? And they last forever (unless you step on them).

    Cheers
    Dave
     
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  8. ciderlover

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    Posted 15/5/14
    Oh bugger!
    I've had my cider fermenting in a Coopers DIY FV for almost 3 weeks. For anyone that has ever used one of these they'll know it is not an airtight container, probably only made for beer fermentation. I'll have to rush out to BIGW this arvo to grab a few dozen PET bottles and do some emergency bottling.

    As this is my first cider, would you gents recommend I carbonate the bottles with plain white sugar or something else? I really want it to turn out nice and dry, I hate sweet cider.
    Cheers!

    [​IMG]
     
  9. TimT

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    Posted 15/5/14
    I'd still use an airlock though. They are what, 5 bucks at most? And they last forever (unless you step on them).

    Or, um, try to sterilise them in by chucking them in boiling water. Whoops.
     
  10. Airgead

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    Posted 15/5/14
    Don't stress too much. While its actively fermenting you will be OK as there is positive co2 pressure and active yeast, both of which will protect you. Its aging that will cause problems if you allow o2 contact.

    I've fermented in plastic before with no problems but transfer as soon as fermentation stops to something that isn't o2 permeable (like a keg).

    BTW - PET bottles aren't great for long term aging either. There's a reason wine is still bottled in glass.

    Cheers
    Dave
     
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  11. Not For Horses

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    Posted 15/5/14
    Happened to a friend right?
     
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  12. ciderlover

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    Posted 15/5/14
    Ah right, thanks for that info Airgead. My SG readings seems to have stabilised at around 1.003 so I guess it might be ready to bottle anyway.

    Considering they just get chucked out and recycled, has anyone ever gone to their local pub or club and dumpster dived for used bottles?
     
  13. TimT

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    Posted 15/5/14
    Happened to a friend right?

    Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.
     
  14. Airgead

    Ohhh... I can write anything I like here

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    Posted 15/5/14
    Yep.. Got a good load of champagne bottles that way.
     
  15. Tahoose

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    Posted 15/5/14
    Point noted.
     
  16. H0U5ECAT

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    Posted 22/5/14
    If you want to sweeten your cider, try adding a little spend a or some other sugar substitute.
    The yeast won't eat the sugar, as there is none.

    Some people here have spoken about adding cinnamon to their brews.
    Because the cinnamon sticks might have some nasties attached, we can assume you never boiled the sticks, try some essence instead.
     
  17. Airgead

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    Posted 22/5/14
    A lot of people don't like the flavour of splenda or other artificial sweetners (I'm one of them). If you don't mine them then they are an easy way to sweeten a cider (and one used by some commercial lolly water type ciders).

    Making a spice essence by extracting in hot water or string alcohol (soak a cinnamon stick in vodka for a few days) is a really good way to get a precise amount of spice into your brew. Very controllable. You can add a drip at a time until its just right.

    Most people just chuck a stick in the fermenter though.

    Cheers
    Dave
     
  18. TimT

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    Posted 30/5/14
    Just bottled our scrumpy today! It had been going along pretty well for a while but I noticed yesterday that the fermentation had pretty definitively stopped. We did have a couple of cold nights, which may have discouraged the yeast, but even so by that time there can't have been much sugar for the yeast left anyway.

    Got 12 bottles; a small amount of sediment may have got into them (I don't really care about that). The gravity went right down to 1.000. The colour is a lovely cloudy gold; the smell, delicious - fresh apple aromas are still present. The taste is interesting too; there still seems to be some residual sugar leaving sweetness (in spite of the gravity reading), and there are also some bitter-sour tastes; I expect they'll mellow and become more gentle in a few months leaving us with a nice mature scrumpy.

    I actually sang this song while bottling.

    http://youtu.be/rQqwG_rQx7A

    It's true!
     
  19. Mutaneer

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    Posted 30/5/14
    yep, all of mine have that hint of acidity at bottling.

    But the next batch I'll rack off a full 5 litre glass demijohn and let it sit for a few months.
    a, just to see how the flavour develops without teh effects of carbing
    b, a still warm cider might be a good thing coming to the end of winter
     
  20. TimT

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    Posted 30/5/14
    Last year with the dregs we made a beaut mushroom stew. This year - disastro - there are no mushrooms! WHATEVER WILL WE DO.
     

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