Friday, September 12, 2003

Yeast Propagation

One of the side-benefits of moving to Pennsylvania that I hadn't considered is that apples grow easily here (unlike Texas, where it doesn't get cold enough). Suddenly right now apples and apple juice are abundant. And I have a lot of time on my hands, so it seems that this is the perfect opportunity to limber up my brewing equipment, replace those bits and pieces which are lost, and brew up a couple of batches of cider for the long cold months ahead. To this end I have 5 gallons of unpasteurized cider in our third fridge(why do we have three fridges? Damned if I know), along with a pitchable Saison yeast.

Cider is a good place to re-enter brewing since it doesn't require quite the work of beer. There is no hour-long boil along with timed additions of small amounts of hops and a rapid chill (one of the lost items is my counterflow chiller). This frees me up to concentrate on sanitation & bottling and not get distracted. It also lets me explore the best way to make gravity work for me in siphoning in this hilly country. Texas & Florida both rather lacked useful slopes, making siphoning more challenging.

Update:Made and pitched. It looks like the apple juice has a specific gravity of 1042. Should make a nice mild cider!