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Beer Style: Common Cider
Recipe Type: other
Yield: 5 US gallons
I can almost hear the howls of protest now, "what, no boil, no sulfites to kill wild yeasts", but this has worked for me. One important caveat, champagne yeasts cause a COMPLETE fermentation of the available sugars in the cider. My first batch smelled like cider but was the dryest tasting beverage you could imagine. Hydrometer reading indicated a F.G. of 1.001. This batch was more like an apple wine than anything else. The batch using ale yeast was much sweeter, much lower in alcohol content but not as clear. My advice is experiment, and enjoy the mistakes.
I've made hard cider two years running, both times in the Fall, during the apple harvest. I used the same method both times and had a fair amount of success.
Place cider in sanitized carboy, add yeast, and fix airlock. It may take upwards of 7 days to ferment out, depending on yeast chosen. Bottle with corn sugar as you would with beer, if you want a sparkling cider, or without for still.
Source: Tom Maszerowski