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Low Alcohol Tolerant Yeasts

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nuggetron

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in my search for a sweet home brew cider i was wondering if any of the geniuses here were able to help me out here
ive made one cider which the flavour was nice, however the alcohol content was excessively high

i was going to attempt the same/similar recipe, apple and pear juices possibly some more sugars and maybe some flavourings if i feel the need

now the question
the yeast
i was looking for one that could be killed off when alcohol reached at 6% give or take
is there one commercially available that doesnt impart too much of a flavour that would hinder a beer?
i dont keg, dont understand blast chilling or any other way of stopping yeast
any ideas would be ideal?
i have my ginger beer recipe down pack just need a cider recipe that works so i can save some money
 

twizt1d

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i can understand what you mean but it only takes a few bugs or some wild yeast to get in and rain on your parade
this will probably turn into another 'bottle bomb' thread if your considering bottling with fermentables left over too :)

i think your in the same boat as a lot of guys trying to make a sweet cider
 

nuggetron

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bugger
thanks man

i will continue my search

might try some small batch trials of attempts, until i find a way to control the yeast
 

marksfish

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maybe you could back sweeten with some lactose.
 

bum

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There's few threads about pasteurising bottled ciders. Seems like a scary proposition to me but have a read of them and see how comfortable you are with the idea. Be aware that this method will make a still cider (unless you want to do it in a particularly dangerous way I recall reading one brewer suggest once).

Having said that, apple juice usually has an OG of around 1050, right? That shouldn't put you a lot over 6%. You should be able to get to your target with a low attenuating yeast and maybe even diluting slightly.
 

JDW81

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in my search for a sweet home brew cider i was wondering if any of the geniuses here were able to help me out here
ive made one cider which the flavour was nice, however the alcohol content was excessively high

i was going to attempt the same/similar recipe, apple and pear juices possibly some more sugars and maybe some flavourings if i feel the need

now the question
the yeast
i was looking for one that could be killed off when alcohol reached at 6% give or take
is there one commercially available that doesnt impart too much of a flavour that would hinder a beer?
i dont keg, dont understand blast chilling or any other way of stopping yeast
any ideas would be ideal?
i have my ginger beer recipe down pack just need a cider recipe that works so i can save some money
Having made quite a few ciders you are going to struggle to make a sweet cider without adding some lactose, or other unfermentable sugar. There are some sweeter ciders yeasts out there, but it is always going to be difficult (in my experience) to replicate a sweet commercial cider.

Back sweeting with some juice in the glass is a popular method.
 

hobartbrewer

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It's unlikely you'll find a yeast strain that will only do 6% alcohol in my opinion. So you should look at ways to get rid of the yeast at the stage you want.

After carbing you can :-

1) kill the yeast through heating it (and risk bottles exploding due to pressure) . http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f32/easy-stove...ng-pics-193295/
2) make the yeast go dormant through cooling it permanently from that point on
3) Add some chemicals like potassium sorbate to poison the yeast (and maybe you to an extent ;) )

Another method to look into would be restricting nutrients for yeast so that they stop producing at the time you want, but that would be very difficult to repeat I think, and probably impossible with something like natural cidar.

I would only consider #1 and #2. If you have a large fridge #2 would be ok. If you go with #1 then perhaps wear a welders helmet while doing it? Seems the greatest risk of bottle blowing is during heating when the lid is on though.
 

nuggetron

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cheers guys
the problem with back sweetening with juice is that it isnt exactly time efficient or party proof, needing to take juice with you cider
not too keen on the boiling
i have a fridge thats for the brewed stuff/ spirits /brewing vessel which is on intermittently to try and control the temperature slightly
i suppose i could try and stop the yeast by turning the fridge on all the time at the coldest settings and see if it will stop the fermentation
poisoning sounds a bit too dangerous for me
the lactose i have tried, i put 1.5 kilos in a 23 litre cider, no effect imo, i think the sweetness is like 1/10th of sugar so you would be needing a fair bit to get the sweetness right

might do a few test batches and see which system works best for me
thanks
 

hobartbrewer

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Another method you could try is upping your alcohol requirement. Apparently some yeasts "die out" at about 8 to 14% alcohol but it would be a trial and error to find out which.

My own belief is pretty much any yeast will do up to 12-14% and the people who achieve less just have a suboptimal wort (lack of nutrients) or suboptimal temperatures. So if you get a yeast which conks out at 12% alcohol and put in enough extra sugar to make say 18% alcohol, you'll have leftover sugar for sweetness and a very alcoholic drink. It would involve a lot of trial and error to get it right though, especially in regards to when to cease primary fermentation so that you can still get carbonation before most of the yeast die.

It would be best to keep a single yeast culture alive so that you are working with the same essential yeast every time, that way you have less variables to contend with.
 

JDW81

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i suppose i could try and stop the yeast by turning the fridge on all the time at the coldest settings and see if it will stop the fermentation
If you decide to try and stop fermentation by cooling the cider down you will need to keep it very cold once you have bottled. Any increase in temperature above about 4 degrees the yeast are likely to wake up, start fermenting and you'll end up with something akin to what the Palestinians are lobbing at Israel at the moment (crude bombs/rockets).

I personally don't think it is worth the risk, given the damage an exploding bottle can do.
 

drsmurto

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There are a few options.

1 - sterile filter. 0.2micron will remove all yeast, add sugar, force carb.
2 - high SO2 content. Think sweet white wine.
3 - pasteurisation as already mentioned, 70C , then force carbonate.
4 - naturally produced sweet cider is caused by starving the yeast of nutrients, some information out there on a number of enthusiast cider sites.
5 - artifical sweetener. The cider kits contain this, enables you to make 'sweet' carbonated cider.

I personally prefer dry cider so have attempted none of these. :D

EDIT - the yeast will make minimal difference to the FG. People getting high FGs have somehow stressed the yeast, the sugars in apple and pear juice are simple and full fermentable unlike malt derived sugars. Apple juice should ferment down to 0.998 - 1.000 (approx) if you pitch a healthy yeast in adequate amounts.
 

Juzdu

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in my search for a sweet home brew cider i was wondering if any of the geniuses here were able to help me out here
ive made one cider which the flavour was nice, however the alcohol content was excessively high
I believe it was "nathan_madness" that was telling me how to fix this problem of the high alcohol, dry cider you get from a simple ferment of apple juice. If you ferment say 10 litres, and it comes out to say 6% abv, then once the ferment is complete, add maybe 2 litres of the same apple juice, unfermented, which will drop the abv by around 20 %, i.e. to around 4.8%. Then immediately bottle some of your cider into a plastic bottle, and the rest into glass as per normal.

Feel the plastic bottle regularly, waiting for it to become hard, which will tell you when your carbonation is complete. Then take all your glass bottles and put them in 70 degree water for 10 minutes to pasteurise, i.e. kill off the yeast. That will stop any further carbonation.

I haven't tried it yet but will be doing so once my cider is completed fermentation. It's only a week in so won't be for a while yet, i've heard it's a 3-4 week process. He tells me he's done this plenty of times...and i've read a lot about it on cider-dedicated forums overseas....I guess to be careful you want to handle the glass bottles carefully (gloves, long sleeves, eye protection) on your first few goes in case you leave it too long in the bottle....
 

mikec

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I guess to be careful you want to handle the glass bottles carefully (gloves, long sleeves, eye protection) on your first few goes in case you leave it too long in the bottle....
Or use all PET bottles.
 

nuggetron

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Or use all PET bottles.
ironically i have plastic bottles
plenty of them
enough for 4 brews
if i bottle the cider before it finished let it carbonate in the bottle and hopefully the bottle will expand and the yeasts should be killed by ? too high pressure or the CO2 or the lack of oxygen?
will the bottles split or anything?
 

bum

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The bottle would be killed before the yeast. Bad idea.
 

twizt1d

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the only way ive been able to make a sweet cider is to ferment the batch right out then back sweeten in the keg with apple juice
from then on its kept at serving temp and i give the keg a small purge every now and then just incase its slowly fermenting away in there
 

nuggetron

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sweet sweet
a few tests to set up next weekend im thinking
i will try the chilled once i have desired alcohol content, maybe try the poisoning technique, may try the boiling one, try the excessive alcohol one and maybe back sweetening with lactose with several bottles to find the right concentration

thanks everyone
may be a costly experiment but could be worth it
 

nuggetron

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one last question

is lactose fermentable at all?
if i was to sweeten with lactose once it was fermented completely would any further fermentation be likely to happen? or will it be safe to bottle then
happy to bottle into plastic to play it safe
 

hobartbrewer

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The problem I see with lactose sweetening is the fact that milk contains 50g of lactose per litre. So if you drop in say 1kg of lactose (which isn't really sweet at all) into a 20l batch thats the same lactose quantity as milk. Everyone is "lactose intolerant" it's just the matter of degree. Some people are with only one glass of milk, others will exhibit issues after drinking 10 cups.

The reason I mention this is if you are a moderate? beer drinker you can consume nearly 2l of beer in one sitting and thats the equivalent of drinking 2 litres of milk in regards to lactose. If the alcohol doesn't give you the runs the lactose probably will? :) And if you give it to friends who are sensitive ... well.
 

hobartbrewer

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one last question

is lactose fermentable at all?
if i was to sweeten with lactose once it was fermented completely would any further fermentation be likely to happen? or will it be safe to bottle then
happy to bottle into plastic to play it safe
Lactose is too complex a sugar for the yeast to digest, so no, it doesn't ferment.
 

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