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Country Talk Discussion Board

Re: How to make hard cider(?)

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Posted by kevin cole on October 04, 2004 at 09:55:41 from (

In Reply to: How to make hard cider(?) posted by C. Kirk on January 04, 2004 at 16:59:58:

It's easy. Buy a package of champagne yeast and pour it into a clean 8oz glass of your cider (be sure it has no preservatives in it, pasturization is OK). Put foil over the top and let it sit for a couple hours until it starts foaming. Pour it into a gallon of your cider and put on an airlock. Store it in a warm dark place and it should start to foam overnight but may take a couple days. If nothing happens in 2 days there is something wrong with your cider (like an unlisted preservative!). If you are making more, you can next pour the 1 gallon into 5 gallons and so on. With storebought cider it will come up to about 4% alc. in a couple weeks and should be poured into a secondary fermentor and let sit for a couple months. After 2 months it should be pretty "dry" and ready to bottle. If you want sparkling cider, add a tsp. of sugar to each bottle and cap them and store at about 55 for another couple months. They can be consumed at any time but get a bit fizzier and better with age to a couple years. If you want apple wine, just bottle with no sugar.

things that can go wrong:
If the pH is too high, it can easily get infected with bacteria and go bad. 1 tsp per gallon of acid blende can fix this.

Stuck fermentation is usually from no yeast nutrient, too much sugar, or too little patience in growing the initial yeast population.

Be sure to keep the fermenting cider in a cool dark place!

If you want a stronger cider (or wine) you should add about 1 lb sugar per gallon to get alcohol to the 12% range. Also, tannin (1/4 tsp/gallon) and acid blende (1.5 tsp/gallon) and yeast nutrient (1 tsp/gallon) may help with flavor and fermentation.

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