bottle conditioning

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from Heather

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Apr 26, 2011, 11:10:21 AM4/26/11
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I'm curious as to how people bottle condition their cider, mostly in calculations.

I bottled a whole bunch of cider on May 9, and put some of it into beer bottles with caps. Half of those I added a little bit of juice. The juice was at 1.045 SG, and I added enough to bump up the cider to 1.003, as Andrew's book suggested nothing beyond 1.005 for beer bottles. That batch carbed out just fine, though it added some acid and changed the flavor of the cider in a way I'm not keen on. Admittedly, the juice was storebought (filtered and pasteurized) as to not cloud it up , and I probably should have hunted around to find one with a better flavor profile. Lesson learned.

I was all set to add sugar to the second batch to also raise it to 1.003 when my beer making husband intervened. He said I needed to be using a nomograph (http://www.howtobrew.com/section1/chapter11-4.html). He thought I should carb it to the same level as a porter, and made the calculation. The result was much less sugar than I had planned to use. The results: well, it has lees like it carbed, but it sure doesn't look or feel carbed. The flavor is much better and closer to the original product, but I'm not sure there was enough sugar to modify it, so this is all theory and not conclusive.

So, how do people calculate to bottle condition? If you use a nomograph, what level of "Volumes of CO2" do you choose? Do you use juice, sugar, or other to carb?

Heather


Claude Jolicoeur

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Apr 26, 2011, 12:31:58 PM4/26/11
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Heather wrote:
> I'm curious as to how people bottle condition their cider, mostly in calculations.
> I was all set to add sugar to the second batch to also raise it to 1.003 when my beer making husband intervened. He said I needed to be using a nomograph (http://www.howtobrew.com/section1/chapter11-4.html). He thought I should carb it to the same level as a porter, and made the calculation. The result was much less sugar than I had planned to use.....
> So, how do people calculate to bottle condition? If you use a nomograph, what level of "Volumes of CO2" do you choose? Do you use juice, sugar, or other to carb?

I don't use any nomograph... I had a look at it, and wondering what
the temperature scale is intented for - is it the temperature at which
you will be drinking the cider? Also, I don't see what "volume of CO2"
stands for - would that correspond to pressure?

In any case, I usually use about 400-500 ml of dextrose per 5 US gal
batch for priming, which would be about 250 to 350 grams, or about 9 -
12 ounce weight. So, that is over the top of the graph... If I drink
my cider at 45F and extend the scales, I would find about 5 vols of
CO2. In any case, it works well with those quantities of priming
sugar.
Claude

Andrew Lea

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Apr 26, 2011, 1:04:22 PM4/26/11
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On 26/04/2011 17:31, Claude Jolicoeur wrote:
> Heather wrote:
>> I'm curious as to how people bottle condition their cider, mostly
>> in calculations. I was all set to add sugar to the second batch to
>> also raise it to 1.003 when my beer making husband intervened. He
>> said I needed to be using a nomograph
>> (http://www.howtobrew.com/section1/chapter11-4.html). He thought I
>> should carb it to the same level as a porter, and made the
>> calculation. The result was much less sugar than I had planned to
>> use..... So, how do people calculate to bottle condition? If you
>> use a nomograph, what level of "Volumes of CO2" do you choose? Do
>> you use juice, sugar, or other to carb?
>
> I don't use any nomograph... I had a look at it, and wondering what
> the temperature scale is intented for - is it the temperature at
> which you will be drinking the cider? Also, I don't see what "volume
> of CO2" stands for - would that correspond to pressure?

That nomograph makes no sense at all for cider. I can only assume it is
intended for some 'typical' beer and makes big assumptions about the
fermentability of the residual native wort sugars? I don't understand
the temperature scale either. Perhaps someone can interpret that for us?
Claude and I are obviously missing something!

Taking a worked example, it recommends 4 oz sugar per 5 US gallons to
get a carbonation of "3 vol" at 48F. None of that stacks up. Working
from first principles, 4 oz per 5 US gallons equates to (4*28)/(5*3.8) =
5.9 g/L of sugar. This will yield about 3 g/L of CO2. That is about 1.5
vol carbonation, not the 3 that's quoted. So, I can only assume the
difference is intended to be made up by the residual wort sugars. They
are not present in cider.

A typical carbonation level for cider is "3 vol" or 6 g/L. That can be
achieved by adding around 10 - 12 g/L of priming sugar. Just about what
Claude uses! You will find that is pretty much the standard level - one
flat teaspoon per pint in old money!

BTW "Carbonation volume" is defined as that volume of CO2 which is
dissolved in a unit volume of liquid of measured at STP (760 mm Hg
pressure, 0 degree C). "1 vol" corresponds to 1.964 g/L of CO2.

Andrew


--
Wittenham Hill Cider Page
http://www.cider.org.uk


from Heather

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Apr 26, 2011, 1:31:30 PM4/26/11
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Claude's message also hasn't come though yet, so I only see what he wrote from what Andrew included in his message, so I can't really comment on that.

Thank you Andrew, for putting some science into this. I almost included why it was frusting me so much - volumes vs psi. I even looked up graphs trying to get it to match up to your book but only frustrated myself further (http://www.ebrew.com/primarynews/ct_carbonation_chart.htm) as nothing was agreeing (Andrew said on page 93 that 1.005 SG would be 45 psi at 15 degrees C, and 45 doesn't even register on that chart).  I see now, thanks to your explanation, that the reason they probably were not working was because of the residual sugars in beer (though I understand some charts were for pressuring kegs). There was even a caluclator, but, again, for beer.

I've got to quit listening to beer makers and stick to the cider books for references.

Heather.



> Date: Tue, 26 Apr 2011 18:04:22 +0100
> From: y...@cider.org.uk
> To: cider-w...@googlegroups.com
> Subject: Re: [Cider Workshop] Re: bottle conditioning
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from Heather

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Apr 26, 2011, 8:47:54 PM4/26/11
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Okay, my husband believes on the nomograph that the tempature gives some indication as to how much CO2 would already be beer to begin with. So something colder would take less sugar compared to something warmer taking more sugar to both achieve the same amount of CO2 volume because the colder one would already have more CO2 in it to begin with.

Heather


From: for_h...@hotmail.com
To: cider-w...@googlegroups.com
Subject: RE: [Cider Workshop] Re: bottle conditioning
Date: Tue, 26 Apr 2011 17:31:30 +0000

Andrew Lea

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Apr 27, 2011, 3:30:46 AM4/27/11
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On 27/04/2011 01:47, from Heather wrote:
> Okay, my husband believes on the nomograph that the tempature gives some
> indication as to how much CO2 would already be beer to begin with. So
> something colder would take less sugar compared to something warmer
> taking more sugar to both achieve the same amount of CO2 volume because
> the colder one would already have more CO2 in it to begin with.
>
> Heather

Ah, good thinking. That could explain some of the 'missing' CO2. I will
sit down later with my Henry's Law spreadsheet and try to work out how much!

Roy Bailey

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Apr 27, 2011, 10:52:38 AM4/27/11
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On Apr 26, 6:31 pm, from Heather <for_heat...@hotmail.com> wrote:
>  I see now, thanks to your explanation, that the reason they probably were not working was because of the residual
> sugars in beer (though I understand some charts were for pressuring kegs). There was even a caluclator, but, again, .for beer.
>
> I've got to quit listening to beer makers and stick to the cider books for references.
>
A policy that is, in my opinion, essential.

Oh, if only the members of CAMRA/APPLE in this country would also
remember that beer and cider/perry are two completely different
drinks.

Roy.

Andrew Lea

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Apr 29, 2011, 5:19:12 AM4/29/11
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On 27/04/2011 08:30, Andrew Lea wrote:
> On 27/04/2011 01:47, from Heather wrote:
>> Okay, my husband believes on the nomograph that the tempature gives some
>> indication as to how much CO2 would already be beer to begin with. So
>> something colder would take less sugar compared to something warmer
>> taking more sugar to both achieve the same amount of CO2 volume because
>> the colder one would already have more CO2 in it to begin with.
>>
>> Heather
>
> Ah, good thinking. That could explain some of the 'missing' CO2. I will
> sit down later with my Henry's Law spreadsheet and try to work out how
> much!

I've done a few more calculations now .....

According to Henry's Law, saturation CO2 at 45F (7C) is around 1.25 vol.
Going back to the previous posting for that condition, we had a
shortfall of 1.5 vol at an indicated 3 vol carbonation. So if the beer
or cider is just saturated with CO2, the sum of these now gives a
shortfall of only 0.25 vol.

Taking another example, at 75F (25C) 5 oz of sugar per 5 Gallons is
shown by the nomograph to give 3 vol carbonation. That amount of added
sugar is (5*28)/(5*3.8) = 7.4 g/L which will give 3.7 g/L of CO2. That
is around 1.85 vol of CO2. Henry's Law shows that at 75F the saturation
of CO2 is 0.75 vol. Putting those together we get 2.6 vol, a shortfall
of 0.4 vol.

In either case there is a calculated shortfall which is presumably made
up by the supersaturation of CO2 in a freshly-fermented beer with
residual gravity together with the long-term fermentable potential of
that gravity, and the nomograph appears to be valid for that situation;
the temperature correction allowing for the lower saturation of the
existing CO2 at higher temperature.

However, it is not necessarily valid for bottle conditioning of a fully
fermented dry cider where, at very best, the existing CO2 level will be
at saturation only and quite probably a good bit less, and where there
is no residual gravity. Under those conditions, following the nomograph
will lead to less carbonation than expected. QED.

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