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Cider Additions

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Cider Additions

Posted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 7:58 am
by megDC
Was wondering if you could tell me what each addition for cider does, if it is necessary, when its typically used during the making process, and the pros and cons?

Yeast Nutrient
Acid Blend
Pectic Enzyme
Carlson Tablets


Re: Cider Additions

Posted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 3:14 pm
by dmtaylor
They're all worthless, IMHO. It's all unnecessary insurance. The yeast doesn't care if you add chemicals to their cider or not, they'll ferment it the same either way. People have been making hard cider for thousands of years and didn't add any of that crap and loved it just fine. I am proud to continue that tradition today in the 21st century.

Re: Cider Additions

Posted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 3:26 pm
by siwelwerd
dmtaylor wrote:They're all worthless, IMHO. It's all unnecessary insurance.

Not quite... now don't take that to mean you can't make great cider by just throwing yeast at some apple juice (who hasn't made at least one tasty cider this way?). But these things are not worthless. Largely unnecessary, perhaps, but not worthless.

"Yeast Nutrient" is a horribly vague term. But cider must typically lacks many of the nutrients yeast require for growth, such as FAN. Adding in nutrients like DAP and/or Fermaid K can provide for a healthier, faster fermentation. If you supplement your apple juice with a lot of sugar to raise the gravity, you might consider nutrients to prevent stressing the yeast. Acid blends are used to balance the cider; adding some acid can help an otherwise flabby cider balance out to a nice refreshing one. I wouldn't worry about acid blends until you know what you're doing. Pectic enzyme is used to reduce a haze caused by pectins, which can set if you boil the cider (or any other fruit juice) before fermentation. Don't boil your cider, and you don't need to worry about it.

I have no idea what the heck a Carlson tablet is. Do you mean campden tablets, perhaps? Carlson most likely refers to the LD Carlson brand.

Re: Cider Additions

Posted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 8:51 am
by megDC
Thanks. I think the Carlson tablet is a brand of Potassium Metabisulfite/campden.

Re: Cider Additions

Posted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 9:16 am
by TheDarkSide
The campden tablets with potassium sorbate will stabilize the yeast if you plan to backsweeten and bottle. Otherwise it will just ferment right out again and create bottle bombs. If you are kegging and keeping it cold, it's not needed.

You can also use the campden tablet to kill off any bugs in unpasteurized cider.

I used yeast nutrient in my last batch...don't know if it helped or not but I had it and it was good insurance.

Re: Cider Additions

Posted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 11:24 am
by screwgie
My last batched I used a pectin enzyme because I planned to stove top pasteurize the bottles. But never got that far since I bottled conditioned and then just stuck them in the fridge because I became very thirsty.... :aaron

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