Author Topic: cider help  (Read 2194 times)

Offline ajdeco1759

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cider help
« on: October 05, 2011, 08:17:38 PM »
Good evening fellow homebrewers, I am in need of some guidance. I started a hard cider a few weeks ago and I was very impatient and used early pressed cider instead of waiting till November when the cider is good and sweet. It came out of the primary very tart, possibly a little to much to my liking. Is there anything I can do/add to counter balance the tartness? any info would would be greatly appreciated.


   Andrew

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: cider help
« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2011, 08:30:28 PM »
How do you plan to package it?  Do you plan for it to be still or sparkling?  Do you have kegging equipment?

There are a few options, but knowing what you want for the finished product and what equipment you have will help determine your best course.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline euge

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Re: cider help
« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2011, 09:23:37 PM »
You can back-sweeten it to taste. Then stun the yeast with campden tablets. Bottle or keg. Tom's right- more info please.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline tomsawyer

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Re: cider help
« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2011, 08:36:57 AM »
You can do a malolactic fermentation to convert the malic acid to the softer lactic acid, but it won't work if you've already added Campden/kmeta since the malolactic bacteria are sensitive to SO2.

You need to add sorbate not just Kmeta if you are going to backsweeten, kmeta doesn't kill yeast.  Sorbate prevents yeast from multiplying but also doesn't kill yeast, so you want it to drop clear before you backsweeten to minimize the amount of residual yeast.

You can also make another batch of cider using apples that aren't as tart, and blend.  Right now I'm fermenting a batch of cider made from sweet and slightly tart apples, and I'm planning to blend with stuff later in the month made from winesap and other tart varieties that come ripe towards the end of October here in MO.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline ajdeco1759

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Re: cider help
« Reply #4 on: October 09, 2011, 10:04:29 PM »
I plan on bottling the cider and using a normal dose of dextrose to to carbonate. I was also gonna cellar it until December hoping it will mellow the tartness out a bit.

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: cider help
« Reply #5 on: October 09, 2011, 10:40:13 PM »
The problem is, if you intend to bottle and carbonate it, you need the yeast to be viable.  But viable yeast will ferment any sugar you add to backsweeten it.  At this point, you are kind of limited in your options.

You can sweeten it with non-fermentable sugar, including lactose, stevia, or any of the artificial sweeteners.

You can sweeten it with something fermentable, but refrigerate all of the bottles from the time they have as much carbonation as you like until they are all gone.  If the yeast you used as any kind of cold tolerance, you don't want to do this.
Tom Schmidlin

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Re: cider help
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2011, 01:19:38 PM »
You can sweeten it with non-fermentable sugar, including lactose, stevia, or any of the artificial sweeteners.

Aspertame (Nutrasweet) hydrolyses in solution and looses its sweetness over a few weeks/months. Sucralose (Splenda) is stable long term.

I've also had cider sweetened with powdered maltodextrin. The sweetness didn't really last in the bottle, but it gave the cider nice body that counteracted the dryness too.
Jimmy K

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Offline ajdeco1759

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Re: cider help
« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2011, 08:11:34 PM »
Alrighty, thanks guys for all the info.   


   Andrew

Offline tomsawyer

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Re: cider help
« Reply #8 on: October 11, 2011, 05:22:47 AM »
Powdered Splenda is 99% maltodextrin.
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Offline rjharper

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Re: cider help
« Reply #9 on: October 11, 2011, 08:45:53 AM »
I've used Splenda in the past to back-sweeten, very successfully.  Of course there is the small sub-population who don't care for the stuff...

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: cider help
« Reply #10 on: October 11, 2011, 11:18:19 AM »
I used Splenda on my last batch of cider.  It tasted great for about a month, and then.... tasted like artificial sweetener.  In a BJCP competition, my fears were confirmed when the judges all said it tasted like artificial sweetener.  I'm never doing that again.

I agree that sorbate is the way to go for backsweetening.  If you want carbonation, keep the dose lower than recommended and some of the yeast will survive to carbonate.  If you want a still cider, then add the recommended doses (or maybe slightly less than recommended) of both sulfite and sorbate, which will kill all the yeast.
Dave

"This is grain, which any fool can eat, but for which the Lord intended a more divine means of consumption. Let us give praise to our Maker, and glory to His bounty, by learning about... BEER!" - Friar Tuck (Robin Hood - Prince of Thieves)

Offline euge

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Re: cider help
« Reply #11 on: October 11, 2011, 11:19:25 AM »
I used splenda to backsweeten a couple ciders. Nice without any synthetic flavor. IIRC I pitched about 20 packets for 5 gallons.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman