Category Archives: hard cider

Hard Cider Update

IMG_1223After a few days my cider started bubbling– I was surprised because I didn’t expect that from my preserved cider. I let it bubble for about a week, then it stopped. I racked the cider and put the stoppers and airlocks back in. There are no more bubbles, so the yeast is now completely spent. We sampled it and tastes just fine, but there wasn’t much of a “hard” bite to the cider. On to more fermentation!

I found this website and followed their suggestion of making a nice hearty starter with more champagne yeast, some apples and some un-preserved cider. I found the unpreserved cider at a local grocery store, Donelans.

Can you see the bubble in the airlock below? It is hard to take a picture of a moving bubble. The other picture is the starter I made yesterday. I will add all of the cider and starter together into the large 5 gallon container after the starter starts for two days.

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Here is the starter and the cider from before ready to be mixed together. The preserved stuff was definitely still fermenting! Yay! It was all carbonated and delicious. Maybe I had over-yeasted it enough to get it going when I first started. The bucket I am using is from my beekeeping days. I hope to have bees again in the future, but I just don’t have a space right now. Plus they take some time. You can just buy the gate and drill into your bucket. The smaller spigots are better for beer and cider, but this is interesting, too.

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I just want to point out that the beautiful rustic sofa table behind some of my pictures was made by Eugene Albright, a master Adirondack Rustic artist from Glens Falls, NY. He makes pieces like this, ready to buy, and also does a lot of custom work. His website currently sucks, but check him out at the juried Rustic Furniture Fair at the Adirondack Museum this and every fall.

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Filed under adirondack, apples, beer, beer spigot, champagne yeast, hard cider, honey gate, Making Stuff, rustic furniture

First hard cider attempt

We have an avid hard cider drinker in the house, so of course I’ve been thinking it is time to make some cider. Long ago I made beer, and even had some hops growing on the house. And I’ve been fermenting a lot of kombucha recently so I’ve refamiliarized myself with the process.

I found so much information online that it started getting confusing, so I decided to just throw myself into it. A quick visit to Beer and Wine Hobby got me champagne yeast and some new airlocks and stoppers. I started with 3 gallons of local pasteurized cider and put half a gallon in a small glass container with a little yeast, and I put the rest in 5 gallon food-grade pail with the rest of the yeast. I am hoping for a dry cider, so I didn’t add any honey or sugar.

Everything seemed to be going well until I read the fine print on the cider ingredients where it states:

Ingredients: Freshly squeezed apple cider, potassium sorbate (as a preservative).

I’m pretty sure this will blow the whole fermentation this first time around, but since it was already all poured in I will see what happens. I think I’ve got a source for un-preserved cider but if not I will wait until next Fall’s apple season

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Filed under Cooking, fermentation, hard cider, hops, Making Stuff