Author Topic: Hard cider fermentation stuck?  (Read 3988 times)

evil_morty

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Re: Hard cider fermentation stuck?
« Reply #15 on: October 06, 2015, 11:24:36 PM »
so looking over some recent years...

1.010
1.004
1.009

maybe that's considered sweet to some of you guys?  keep in mind these are 4.5%ish ABV.

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Hard cider fermentation stuck?
« Reply #16 on: October 07, 2015, 12:20:11 AM »
Last year, with my gelatin and chilling techniques, my ciders finished at 1.010, 1.007, 1.011, and one of them I didn't measure but was in the same neighborhood.  These I thought were all very well balanced between sweetness and tartness.  The year before that (2013), I got 1.006, 1.010, and 0.998.  While they had great flavor, I thought those were generally too tart and dry for my preference (especially the 0.998).

I think acidity bugs me more than dryness.  There is an art to getting the right blend of apples/juices to keep the acidity from clenching down hard.  Malolactic fermentation can help ease the acidity.  But if you don't do that, or don't manage your acidity by other means (starting with a high quantity of bland low acid apples), you'll most likely wish you'd finished or backsweetened up to around 1.010.

I've made some very tasty ciders that finished way down around 0.992.  Very enjoyable apple flavor... HOWEVER, that's also very dry, with nothing to balance the dryness or tartness that will become totally exposed.  Personally I don't backsweeten -- not that there's anything wrong with it, except to me I think it makes the cider taste a little artificial and I'd rather be drinking the pure product.  Also I no longer add any sugars up front either.  So... going from approximately 1.045 to 1.050 to approximately 1.010, I'm ending up with about 5% ABV.  Perfect for me.

My opinions.  Yours will differ.  Do your own thing.  Do what makes you happy.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2015, 12:22:14 AM by dmtaylor »
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Offline 69franx

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Re: Hard cider fermentation stuck?
« Reply #17 on: October 07, 2015, 01:03:49 AM »
I hear you Dave, planning on trying again and leaving out the sugar. Also going to go with 05 vs the 04 I used last year. And now that I have 6 1G wine jugs, I may try a few different things rather than 1 big batch. Also, after reading a lot of what you have posted, I was likely too hot: high 60's-low 70's last year. I'll  run them lower this year for sure
Frank L.
Fermenting: Ringler Pilsner (thanx Ron)
Conditioning: BVIP (thanx Denny)
In keg: Traquair House Clone (Skotrat style)
In the works:  Czech Dark Lager, American Pale Ale

Offline orerockon

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Re: Hard cider fermentation stuck?
« Reply #18 on: October 07, 2015, 02:37:37 AM »
I made a cider last year, my first and only so far, and had a lot of troubles(?) with it. You can see original pic and the thread here:
https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=20354.0

In the end, I bottled it at 1.014, down from 1.064. It was way too sweet for any of my friends, even white wine drinkers, and definitely was not what I was looking for so it wound up going down the drain after about 15 bottles worth of sampling and toying with it to help it out.

There were a lot of thoughts that it looked keeved but that was not an effect I was trying to obtain and it definitely wound up sweeter and slower to the finish. Good luck, but I am sure I would have loved my cider to be stuck at 1.000 or 0.999. I am jealous and plan on trying again soon

You keeved it real good. I keeved one carboy last winter by accident (experimenting with wild beasties from my trees) and took one to dry (WLP). It happened very late, after the 2nd rack, and the cauliflower thingie was huge. I just siphoned off of it to bottle. Other than the color (the wild was more straw than cider color) there was little difference, neither were particularly sweet, I just preferred the WLP one, had more depth. One thing I did notice is is that it carbonated a little like champagne.