View Full Version : Primary cyser fermentation done, anything I missed besides aging to remove harshness

06-22-2016, 11:53 AM
First time cyser

84oz Organic Apple Cider (2/3 of a gallon)
1 1/2# Wildflower honey
10 raisons
Warmed to 70 deg, dumped into carboy. Shake, shake, shake to aerate

1/2t Red Star Pasteur Champagne yeast,
1/2t nutrient
Carboy with airlock, after 13 days, somewhat clear amber, 1" thick lees sludge & bubbling stopped
[Next time, I'll stir to aerate during first few days, and add nutrient in stages]

Original SG: 1.110
Fermented SG: 0.991 15.6% ABV

Re-racked to new carboy
Added 2fl oz honey + 8fl oz apple juice + 8fl oz water to sweeten & lower the ABV a bit

Updated SG: 1.004 13.9% ABV
Degassed by shaking & letting gas escape several times [or was that stupid to do??]

It still tastes a bit dry (which might be ok) and definitely on the harsh side (too harsh).
Now aging in the carboy with airlock, no obvious activity on day 2 of re-rack

* Is there anything else I should do besides let this age a month or two or three? I like cider
on the drier side, so not sure if I should sweeten this up more or not. I'm more concerned
about the harshness. My reading seems to indicate it will mellow with time. Sure hope so!
I also assume if I end up wanting more sweetness, I can add a little more honey or juice down
the road?

* I'd welcome any other observations or tips also, as I'm just learning


06-22-2016, 02:36 PM
What are you calling harshness? 15% ABV is at the limits for that yeast, maybe you're tasting fusel alcohols? Or is it acidic (apples can be). Both conditions will improve with age.

06-22-2016, 02:55 PM
If you like the taste of vanilla, that can take the edge off a harsh cyser...

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06-22-2016, 05:43 PM
Not following a staggered nutrient addition protocol has most likely led to fusel alcohol production and the associated harshness. Aging many months will cure this most likely.

Shaking to degas after SG reaches 1.030 or lower just leads to long time to clear. You should have racked instead. This degases and helps clear you mead.

07-02-2016, 07:52 AM
You can also stir gently with a sanitized slotted spoon (keeping the surface as "unbroken" as possible) to degas as well.

How about some dead yeast hulls to help at this point? I've been reading about adding those (some boiled yeast) to help clear off flavors... would it be ok at this point to add those?

07-03-2016, 11:20 PM
Yes adding dead yeast cells is like adding small sponges that will absorb some of the problem. With no mention of temp control and no mention of SNA it's most like hot as hell with fussels. A long ageing period might fix most of that.