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#21 pharmer



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Posted 17 December 2018 - 09:03 AM

If you take a dry hard cider & run it through the still you get kickass apple brandy.

I’ve got 12 gallons of cider that should yeild 2.5 gallons of brandy that goes into a charred white oak cask for aging. It’s on the “to do” list.

Who wants to stop by Bear Swamp for a tasting?

address please :)      I'll bring some of mine


11 gallons in carboys are perking along nicely. They live in the basement at an almost steady 60 degrees which is ideal for the wine yeast recommended at the brew store. I kept one gallon of the original juice ( procured from a nearby orchard who brag on growing cider apples)  and froze it for later use as a back sweetener or flavor enhancer if it gets too flavorless.


Maybe mid march it will be all finished, filtered, and bottled. Party that night :)   then let much of it sit for another couple months and have nice cold hard apple cider for the warmer months.


This fermenting thing is addictive. Bought a 6 gallon wine kit which went well, was a big hit with the family, and keeps the cost of good wine down waaaaaaay low. I'm not much of a drinker but this puts me in a spot where I and several friends could be  :)

Edited by pharmer, 17 December 2018 - 09:36 AM.

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#22 pharmer



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Posted 19 December 2018 - 08:59 PM

Old Bear


My juice has been fermenting for about three weeks. Getting one bubble a minute through the airlock for a few days now.


Would you say it's time to rack off and get the wine away from the lees?

Edited by pharmer, 19 December 2018 - 08:59 PM.

#23 OldBear



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Posted 23 December 2018 - 12:11 PM

Holidaze boocoo busy — just found this. Sorry bro.

I like my hard cider dry so I use Red Star Champagne yeast & let it ferment in the carboys until it’s done fermenting, everything settles & it clears.

When I bottle, I decant from carboy into 5 gallon pail w/ spigot & add about a quart or so of sweet cider that I froze when pressing.

I bottle in one liter glass bottles with wire collar caps to hold the pressure. The sugar in the sweet cider ferments & makes for a nice effervescence.

Kinda like a brut champagne, but lighter. Makes kickass mimosas.

Perhaps not the best technique, but works for me.

I have friends that use secondary fermenters & bottle before fermentation is complete. They produce some great cider, but it always strikes me as being more fussy than I want to handle.

Since getting the still, I’m tossing a few extra pounds of extra sugar in each carboy since the yeast will handle up to 18%.

& I’m all about maxing the kick.

#24 pharmer



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Posted 27 December 2018 - 11:18 AM

I see you're a minimalist :)


Tested mine today.


Drier than I was hoping for. Maybe should have stopped it a couple days back but have a fall back plan of a gallon of frozen juice from the original batch. I'll back sweeten with that and probably add more yeast for carbonation and stop that with a pastuerization after bottling.  Lots of labor but should get me where I want to go. Also going to add a touch of vanilla bean and cinnamon bark at some point.


Close to 6% so I'll stop it there. I'm an ethanol lightweight and would like to drink three of these and still be able to work with sharp objects or drive a golf cart etc  :)


Going to kill the yeast now and rack off the lees and let it sit until it clears.

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