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Cyser and Yeast

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earthday5

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Hi,

I'm making a cyser (honey and apple juice) for the first time and have a yeast question/issue. My recipe calls for a Lalvin EC 1118 yeast. I tried this yeast but got no fermentation. I had a Montrachet yeast and tried it. The ferment started quickly. Question: Did I make a mistake, or am I OK?

Any comments appreciated...earthday5.
 
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TheTooth

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How long did you wait after adding the Lalvin EC 1118 yeast? There is a typical lag time before fermentations really take off. You may have jumped the gun adding the second yeast. If so, you'll just have both yeasts fermenting your wine. Not bad, per se, but it will be harder to duplicate the recipe in the future.
 
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earthday5

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Hey, Tooth:

I waited 24 hours. Not enough time? I really didn't think about a lag time... I'm sure I'll learn more.

Do you have any thoughts about using the Montrachet yeast on a mead wine? This is only my second batch of wine, the first was concord, which was better than I thought. I grow my own grapes here in North Carolina (or at least those the squirrels don't get).

What wines do you make?

Thanks for your comments.



Earthday5
 

TheTooth

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Hi Earthday,

I'm still fairly new to winemaking. I have made a port from a kit and I am in the process of making a riesling from a kit. I have also made a few different meads and hard apple ciders.

Additionally, I have made a lot of beer over the past few years. I'm just starting to branch out form my beer brewing into mead and wine.

There is typically a lag time than can be anywhere from a few hours to a few days, depending on the activity of the yeast (lower lag times when an active starter is pitched) and the temperature of the must.

Honestly, I don't have enough experience making mead to have an opinion on the specific strain you have used. I have only used two strains so far. I didn't keep very good notes the first time around, but I used Lalvin D47 for the second mead. It seems ok so far, but it's still way too young to know (made it in June). It's a medium-dry mead, so I think it'll need some more aging before it'll really be ready to drink.

If you are looking for a good book on mead making, I think this is the best: "The Compleat Meadmaker" by Ken Schramm (http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias=aps&field-keywords=the+compleat+meadmaker&x=0&y=0).

Hope this was of some help,
Tooth
 

Joshua1980

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Hello Earthday!
Cyser is my favorite type of mead to make. I've made quite a few batches of mead the past few years, but I've really only dabbled in grains and grapes...
One thing I've found with almost all of my meads is that there has been quite a bit of lag between pitching and the initial fermentation. EC-118 is the yeast I've used most often, and I usually don't see anything happening for about 2 days.
I don't think you've hurt it at all using the second type of yeast, but the flavor will prolly end up different, as said above

Hope tis was helpful!
 

Tom

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If its gonna take that long you may be better off making a starter. Or at least rehydrate the yeast prior to pitching.
Try adding some Nutrient as well.
 

Luc

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Tom has a good point here, make a yeast starter 24 hours upfront when preparing your must. That way you are sure to have a healthy yeast colony that hits the must and fermentation should start in an hour to a few hours.

If you do not know how to make a yeast starter look here:
http://wijnmaker.blogspot.com/2007/08/gist-starter-yeast-starter.html

As the yeast strains sold over there are different from what is sold in Europe I might be wrong, but some things came to my mind when I read this.

The EC-1118 yeast has (if my information is correct) the killer factor. That means that it produces an enzyme that inhibits other yeasts. So the Lalvin might inhibit the Montrachet yeast.
The EC-1118 has also a highre alcohol tolerance as far as my knowledge goes. So the Lalvin strain will be the most dominant.

That is all theory, in real live you will be ok.

Luc
 

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