So I got some apple cider from Sky Top Orchard in Flat Rock, NC to the tune of 5 gallons worth ($35, approximately) and 4 lbs (two quarts-ish) of whatever honey from the grocery store and set off to try to make my first cyser, to uncertain results. 

First, the cider is unpasteurized–props to the orchard for freshness, but adds another step for me.  So I boiled 5 gallons of cider, adding a handful of raisins, some cinnamon and cloves, and a couple cups of brown sugar (can’t fault going for more sweetness).  SINCE I had to pasteurize it myself, I then had to let it sit to cool down to at least 100 deg F or so so it wouldn’t kill the yeast. 

Anyway I used the Wyeast Sweet Mead 4184 strain and am hoping that it won’t cause any problems: it’s been a while since I’ve used it (Orange Cinnamon Mead) and that one turned out way funkier than I thought.  Also used 5 tsps of Fermax yeast nutrient Morning after, only one bubble approximately every 50 seconds, so I stirred the dickens out of it and we’ll see whether I get any more action today when I get home from school.  Sometimes it takes more than overnight for fermentation to really get going so I’ll be patient (I just really don’t want this to screw up). 

Recipe!

  • 5 gallons of apple cider, boiled
  • large handful of raisins (approx 2 cups)
  • 2 cups of brown sugar
  • 2 lbs honey
  • 10 large cinnamon sticks
  • 1/4 cup of cloves
  • 5 tsps Fermax
  • 1 packet Wyeast 4184 added after cooling
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