Author Topic: First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?  (Read 263 times)

Offline Joe_Beer

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First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?
« on: July 23, 2020, 12:23:35 AM »
I bought a gallon of straight apple juice (unfiltered and all) and thought I'd dump some yeast in to see what comes of it. Picked up a 3-pack of Cider House Select Premium Cider Yeast off amazon. It says it's suitable for 5-6 gallons. Since I'm making only a gallon, I figured I'd pitch about a 1/4 of the pack (along with a cup of table sugar) and maybe save some for next time. I put the cap on, shook it up a bit, and left it sit. It was about 73F when I pitched it (room temp of basement). 12 hours later, the airloc is only just starting to move down off the MAX line (maybe 1/4") . Is this stuff really this slow or should I go pitch the rest of the packet?  I did end up proofing some of the yeast from the packet this afternoon and it took a good hour or two but it's got some froth developing (so might be OK).

Offline erockrph

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Re: First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2020, 02:14:41 AM »
I haven't used that specific yeast, but in general cider doesn't have as much nutrients as beer so if you don't add yeast nutrients it can be a bit sluggish to start. it will still make cider just fine, but you may find that it takes a bit longer than expected. Cider fermentations also put out a fair amount of sulfur, and I've found that batches made with yeast nutrient tend to clean up the sulfur more quickly than those without nutrient added.
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Offline Joe_Beer

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Re: First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2020, 02:46:56 AM »
Thanks for the input. Forgot to mention - I did add a bit of nutrient (fermax I think?) about a 1/2 teaspoon. Hopefully any sulphur cleans up.  It is finally bubbling a bit so yeah, definitely slower to get started than the couple beers I've done so far.

Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2020, 06:41:57 PM »
Cider fermentations also put out a fair amount of sulfur, and I've found that batches made with yeast nutrient tend to clean up the sulfur more quickly than those without nutrient added.
What yeast do you use? I've never used an official cider yeast to make cider and the only time that I've gotten sulphur was when I used a lager yeast in the low 50s.
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Offline Joe_Beer

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Re: First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?
« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2020, 09:22:01 AM »
What yeast do you use? I've never used an official cider yeast to make cider and the only time that I've gotten sulphur was when I used a lager yeast in the low 50s.

Yeesh.. yeah, that doesn't sound tasty at all. I was going to use some US-05 but seems like I read a few stories about that not turning out so well for some folks. This is what I used: Cider House Select Premium Cider Yeast (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00N2WGUPW). No idea if it's any good or not. It's been perking away about one bubble/sec for the past 24 hours so definitely working. I suppose I should have just pitched the whole packet but was kinda curious if I could make the yeast stretch for a few batches so we'll see how it turns out. I'm not cooling this stuff all and my ambient basement temp at night gets right up near the top end of the ideal range. Maybe this would be a good Kveik experiment due to the fruity flavors it imparts. hrm..


Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?
« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2020, 05:17:13 PM »
What yeast do you use? I've never used an official cider yeast to make cider and the only time that I've gotten sulphur was when I used a lager yeast in the low 50s.

Yeesh.. yeah, that doesn't sound tasty at all.
It tasted fine, the sulphur smell didn't carry over to the taste once the fermentation was done.
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Offline erockrph

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Re: First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?
« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2020, 06:48:28 PM »
What yeast do you use? I've never used an official cider yeast to make cider and the only time that I've gotten sulphur was when I used a lager yeast in the low 50s.

Yeesh.. yeah, that doesn't sound tasty at all.
It tasted fine, the sulphur smell didn't carry over to the taste once the fermentation was done.

Right, the sulfur ages out given enough time. To be honest, I've picked this up from every strain I used before I started adding nutrients, but ale strains were the worst. I've gotten sulfur from US-05, S-04, Notty and T-58, as well as 71-B. I've gotten relatively sulfur-free batches from 71-B, D-47, Cote des Blancs and Safcider, but I've used nutrient for all of those. With pectic enzyme, nutrient, and cold-crashing, I generally go from orchard to clear cider in the glass in about 3 weeks. It was almost double that when I was using ale strains and without nutrients, mainly to age out the sulfur.
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Offline Saccharomyces

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Re: First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2020, 04:36:14 PM »
Cider is one of those things where using a POF+ (phenolic off-flavor positive) yeast strain can be a good thing.  Traditional cider is more like wine than beer and a large percentage of the most popular wine yeasts are POF+ due to the closer to wild nature of wine strains.

Offline erockrph

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Re: First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?
« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2020, 05:01:41 PM »
Cider is one of those things where using a POF+ (phenolic off-flavor positive) yeast strain can be a good thing.  Traditional cider is more like wine than beer and a large percentage of the most popular wine yeasts are POF+ due to the closer to wild nature of wine strains.

Interesting food for thought. Any thoughts on pitch rate and fermentation temps for a POF+ strain in cider? Normally for a hefeweizen, I pitch about half of my typical ale pitching rate and ferment in the low/mid 60's to give a bit more phenolics rather than just making a banana bomb. Obviously, a cider would be a bit different because there is no ferulic acid to convert to 4VG, but I could imagine that those pathways may potentially convert other precursor compounds from fruit to create interesting aromatics.

This fall I may have to split a pitch between a dunkleweizen and some hard cider...
Eric B.

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Offline denny

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Re: First time making a gallon of cider, How much yeast?
« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2020, 05:50:52 PM »
Cider is one of those things where using a POF+ (phenolic off-flavor positive) yeast strain can be a good thing.  Traditional cider is more like wine than beer and a large percentage of the most popular wine yeasts are POF+ due to the closer to wild nature of wine strains.

Interesting food for thought. Any thoughts on pitch rate and fermentation temps for a POF+ strain in cider? Normally for a hefeweizen, I pitch about half of my typical ale pitching rate and ferment in the low/mid 60's to give a bit more phenolics rather than just making a banana bomb. Obviously, a cider would be a bit different because there is no ferulic acid to convert to 4VG, but I could imagine that those pathways may potentially convert other precursor compounds from fruit to create interesting aromatics.

This fall I may have to split a pitch between a dunkleweizen and some hard cider...

Anecdotally,  in the 30 or so batches of cider I've made I haven t seen pitch rate make any difference in terms of flavor.  What has made a difference is yeast strain and apple variety.
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