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Bodenski

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Today I learned a valuable lesson. I've had 3 gallons of cider sitting in a carboy for about a month. I've been a little impatient and really wanted to bottle it. (Well, I wanted to bottle 2/3rds of it, some sweetened, some not, and the rest in a 1 gallon jug to continue to bulk age.)

So I washed all the bottles and other supplies (which took a while to do, since I bought them off someone and wanted to make sure they were clean), racked the first gallon off into the 1 gallon jug, and was ready to measure out the priming sugar for the 2 gallons I had left.

Here's where the mistake occurred. I thought to myself "if I don't degas the liquid before I bottle it, then the CO2 might be too much and I'll get bottle bombs." So I get my little degassing wand and start to degas my remaining 2 gallons. That were still in my carboy, you guessed it, sitting on top of some lees! :( 10 seconds later I realized my mistake, but it was too late. My nice clear cider was now cloudy as all get out as I stirred up everything that had fallen out over the last month!

After some choice words (at no one in particular, since it was clearly my own fault), I poured the 1 gallon back into the carboy, degassed it a little more (since at this point I'm hopping it will help it clear faster) and put it back down in my basement to clear for another 3-4 weeks.

So for all the washing I did I got exactly zero done. The only good thing is that I tasted a bit of the cider before I racked off the first gallon, and found that it's 10X better than what it was last month. My hope now is that I didn't oxygenate it too much as I poured the 1 gallon back into the carboy ( I was pissed at that point and didn't care, but looking back I should have siphoned it instead of pouring it angrily) but hopefully the degassing helped to take some of that back out as well.

So the lesson is don't degas your beverage when it's sitting on top of lees that you've waited so patiently to fall out!

The one thing that might make me feel better is to hear that even you more experienced wine makers have made dumb mistakes as well. Anyone care to share a story so I don't feel alone?
 

Jericurl

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Stirring up a bunch of gunk always seems to make it clear quicker. Weird I know, but there it is. Something about binding the suspended matter quickly. If you have any bentonite, adding a little bit of that will make it clear super fast as well.
 

Bodenski

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Stirring up a bunch of gunk always seems to make it clear quicker. Weird I know, but there it is. Something about binding the suspended matter quickly. If you have any bentonite, adding a little bit of that will make it clear super fast as well.
I have some sparkaloid that I bought to use for my Dragonblood that is currently in primary. I guess I could use some of that as well. Or since everyone says that cider gets better with time, I might just wait. (I've known for a long time I'm not a patient person. This is probably the wrong hobby for someone who hates to wait!)
 

bkisel

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Nope, nothing like that has ever happened to me... That's my story and I'm sticking to it!
 

drainsurgeon

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Bodenski, I did that to a batch of peach, mango, pineapple this summer. I was amazed how fast it cleared the second time. Don't beat yourself up too bad because 1) we all make mistakes (except bkisel), and 2) wine is very forgiving. I'm sure it will be fine in no time. Relax and grab a glass of wine and watch it clear before your eyes! :HB
 

CheerfulHeart

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Bodenski, my first batch of cider/wine was a comedy of my errors. I didn't know I had not degassed it nearly enough and I forgot to add k-meta and sorbate before racking it into glass jugs. Add the fact I stored the jugs in an area that reached temperatures well over 100 degrees for a week straight last summer and you can guess what happened next. BANG! 5 bottle bombs. I didn't know glass and 5 gallons of liquid could travel as far as it did. Fortunately no injuries or damage except to my ego. :)

I hope this helps you feel better. :h
 

Bodenski

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I hope this helps you feel better. :h
Yep, all the stories help! Now I just need a good success story to balance this one.

As a wise man once said: "Never make the same mistake twice Keep inventing new ones instead!" I have a feeling I might make some more before it's all said and done . . .
 

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