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I'm planning to serve some homemade cider, hot and mulled at a market stall in the coming weeks. I'll be siphoning out of a 23L demijohn (like this: http://www.toowoombahomebrewers.com.au/Wine/Accessories/glass-demijohn-23-l to serve.

The plan is to heat the cider in a big pot to the right temperature (say, 70C), pour a little into the demi to let it adjust, then fill it up. I might need some sort of heat source to keep it warm, but I won't have power. I'm thinking about a very low gas flame with a lot of diffusion (fine metal screens) underneath the demi. Then again, 20L of hot liquid stays hot a long time, maybe I won't need to worry.

Am I mental? Am I going to explode the demi? We clean them with a hot-water pressure cleaner, and they're fine, but I wonder about having them full of hot liquid. Last thing I need is 23L of scalding cider exploding everywhere on the night.

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hmm...two questions in a row of people taking risks with carboys because of cider! Must be potent stuff! ;) – mdma May 8 '13 at 23:33
up vote 4 down vote accepted

Don't do it. They are not meant to be heated. You could heat it before hand and put it into an insulated cooler, and that would hold the heat for a long time.

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This, or use a small gas burner and a big pot to dispense it, I've had a lot of hot/warm cider, and it's never been carbonated, so you won't need to worry about this. Anything that isn't heat/shock resistive glass (Pyrex, brosillicate, etc...) shouldn't be used with heat. – Doug Edey May 8 '13 at 22:42
Doug, I ended up going with something like what you suggested: I tested the Demi with water at about 65C, with no problems, and it only dropped about 10C over 4 hours. On the night, I heated the cider in a stainless keg, transferred it into the demi, and had a couple of large beakers on top of gas burners, which I siphoned into from the demi: Looked great - like a bit of a science experiment, and folks loved it. Sold about 30L of cider that way! – Beejamin Jun 11 '13 at 1:24

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