Cider Experiment #3–1 week Cider–1 day boom #homebrew

After bottling Cider Experiment #2 (still haven’t posted) Divide! commented that he liked the cider but hated the bottling (this was 100 bottles!).

I thought about it some more, and an experiment was born.

The Hypotheses

“could you make cider lazily, and  just bottle in the juice jugs themselves and be carbonated in a week?”

 

The steps:

My first experimental steps were:

  1. Buy 4 Jugs of cider
  2. Put yeast in all 4
  3. After 1 day, seal the lid for Jug 1
  4. 2 days in, seal Jug 2, do the same for Jugs 3 and 4 on days 3 and 4…
  5. At a week, bring them to a party and see what level of carbonation is best.

The things that held me back was I did not have an event where I could bring 4 gallons of cider.  Then we started planning a party…

I had a big brewing day.  I was making a mild with 2nd runnings from brewing  at Tom Schmidling’s, and I was brewing 3 versions of a CDA with 3 smoked malts (future post).  The counters were full of brewing goodnesses.

    WP_000622

    The Test

    I went for a reduced experiment.

    1. 2 1 Gallon jugs of cider (same as previous).
    2. Put hydrated yeast in both,
    3. Just place the lids on loosely
    4. at 20 hours I closed the lid on #1.
    5. With in 2 hours it was puffing":
    6. WP_000624

      Hmmm, This is science so I should measure
      :WP_000625
      5 hours later, this is starting to look like a bad idea, and by bad idea, I mean explosively bad, and by that, I mean AWESOME.
       WP_000629
      I decided  to take a precaution and put the sealed jug in a pot:
      WP_000626
      Yeah, that is going to blow… I put a grocery bag over the top… Which was a great idea, when 2 hours later, it blew:WP_000631WP_000632WP_000634

    The sound was like a gunshot.  Amazingly, no one woke up for that…

    Since I still had a gallon of cider, or so, in the pot, I decided to pour it into a 2 liter bottle and put an airlock in the top.  Now when you write that sentence the fact that 2 litres is significantly less than 1 gallon seems obvious, but at the time it did not.  The problem was pouring from a large pot into a 2 litre bottle.  I did it in the sink, with the idea that any spills would go into the sink…

    It worked, for filling.  It was tricky, holding a funnel and bottle in one hand, and pouring from a 3 gallon pot in the other (2 liter bottles are not very tip proof).  I poured the cider in, suddenly realizing I has too much in the pot.  I then carefully put pot on the counter.  Did I mention the counter was full of brewing goodness, ginger bread houses, and other things?  Well I carefully set the pot on the counter, making sure it was stable, only to discover it was not.  The liquid in the pot has sloshed toward the middle of the counter letting me thing it was stable, and then sloshed back informing me it was not, by dropping to the floor.  The loud clatter was what woke people up, and made the floor sticky, not the explosion.  I mopped the floor 3 times that night, and it was still sticky the next day.

    Results/Observations

    The results are that you cannot carbonate in the juice jugs, they are not pressure worthy.

    Conclusion

    This was likely a known bad idea Smile had I thought about the jugs [insert joke here].  I could have test the pressure worthiness of the jug before hand.  However, using a 2 litre bottle as a back gave me a further idea, that I could just ferment the 2 gallons in 4 of those. 

    So the idea of just going to the store for cider and the LHBS for wine yeast and having cider in a week, now requires more equipment (bottles seem to hold up to 200PSI), but that can be found material.

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    4 Responses to Cider Experiment #3–1 week Cider–1 day boom #homebrew

    1. t08y says:

      I’d wager that if you were trying to carbonate a *hard cider* and so that all you were doing was adding a little bit of sugar back into a dry cider, the bottles might hold. All the same, the 2 L PET bottles will work much better. I force carbonate all kinds of things at 40 PSI in PET bottles. However, you can still blow those bottles if you have a fermenting beverage inside with lots of sugar. I almost blew my PET bottles when bottle conditioning grape juice. Only almost… In the end, the carbonated grape juice was AWESOME.

    2. jim says:

      Thanks so much for the blog. I was inspired by your cider post to mess around with my bottle priming of cider. I loved the ease and taste of the mini marshmallow addition. Im trying it again with a dozen bottles of a porter:) FYI adding a cup of the cider with the potasium phosphate presevative per gallon of cider doesnt inhibit bottle priming. In fact, its a fine way to make a dozen bottle bombs.

    3. Mike Scott says:

      Sweet! That sounds like something that I would do for sure. I bought 1G of Cider, and haven’t done anything with it yet, I had planned on buying 4 more, but never did. When I read the hypothesis I thought, “hey, that could work”. Glad I read on.

      BTW, I don’t think your RSS feed works, when I subscribe Google reader says that there’s no unread items.

      • Zot says:

        My cider experimenting friend Divide! has taken to using 2 liter bottles with a Schrader valve and then using a co2 bike inflator to carbonate. I was using the rubber ones as well but I found they left a rubber smell. My trials with metal valves and water weld have not worked out yet…

        The RSS feed is wordpress, I am not sure if I have anything to do with it (other than being lame and not posting enough).

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