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EASY HARD APPLE CIDER

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FromScratchWoman:

--- Quote from: Fugg on November 09, 2011, 01:48:36 PM ---Is this a typo? I think I know what was meant to be said, but some clarification would be nice:
1st freeze yields 40 proof/ 20% ?
2nd = 80 proof / 40% ?

or 1st = 40% alcohol, 2nd = 80% or 160 proof? I can't imagine that to be the case.

--- End quote ---
That is the theoretical case..alcohol does not freeze so the water content  freezes on the bottom,first freeze leaves a 40% layer on top second freeze gets you to 80% next freeze sends you to the hospital ;D but the volume would decrease with each accidental freezing..I theoretically gave my self an imagined headache this made up morning from some lovely pretend 40% Apple jack in a dream last night...in my dream it tasted fantastically of apples and was wonderful warmed with fresh cream and mulling spices on a woodstove.. :beer:

Doc K:
The percent alcohol in Applejack will really depend on how long/hard you freeze the hard cider.  You don't really even have to perform two different freezes.  In the "old'n" days, they would just leave the cider barrel out in the cold in the winter.  Some places far north would let the barrel freeze solid and then drill a core to the liquid center and have something close to 80 proof Applejack (that would be 40% alcohol).

Applejack is notorious for causing hangovers.  When we heat distill an alcoholic beverage, the by-products of fermentation like fuse alcohol (complex alcohols), methanol (a simpler alcohol, aka "wood alcohol"), and other more complex by-products are left behind or easily separated due to the known boiling temperatures.  When distilling alcohol, we typically aim to keep only the ethanol (or normal "drinking" alcohol) portion. 

However, when we freeze cider or any other alcohol for that matter, we are actually performing a method of distillation known as (surprise!) Freeze Distillation.  Freeze distillation does not give us the option to separate the aforementioned by-products, so they are instead concentrated in the freeze distilled product along with the desired concentration of ethanol.

It is mainly these concentrated by-products (especially the wood alcohol) that is responsible for the intense hang-over from drinking a bit too much Applejack.  If you drank the equivalent amount of heat distilled alcohol, you wouldn't have the hangover.  In fact, a person can have the "hangover" without even feeling a "buzz" from the Applejack - this is likely from a higher percentage of wood alcohol and the toxic effects it has on the human body.

With all that said, Applejack is safe to drink in moderation, just like any other alcohol.  The quantity of wood alcohol is well below life endangering toxic levels... if drank in moderation.  However, if you drink way more than you should, then you run the risks of physical damage not only from the ethanol, but also the wood alcohol.

Hope that clarifies things a bit.

Doc K

downinmississippi:
I just got started with Apple Ciders and so far i'm loving how easy they are.

Am going to try out that Edworts receipe when i get my big bottle in.

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