This year's batch(es) of hard cider start today.
The first five gallons were purchased today at the Minneapolis Farmer's Market from Fireside Orchards. The fresh cider has a Specific Gravity of 1.051. It's a pretty simple process... I simply pour the cider into a carboy with a vial of Whilte Labs' #775 English Cider yeast, and stop it up with an airlock.
The plan is to let this go in the primary for about 4 weeks. Then when it is racked over to the secondary, and the yeast is all wiped out, I'll make up the difference of what is lost to sediment with some fresh, pasteurized apple cider. The cider has some of its own yeast, so it is pasteurized so the fermentation process doesn't take off again. All of the sugar in apple juice (cider) is fermentable, so we want to add some back to sweeten the end product.
I'll be back with updates!