As Title sayes, Pretty new to the whole home brewing scene and I haven't really progressed past the kits yet.
I've followed the instructions perfectly and I know I've been above careful when it comes to sanitizing, Thing is my bottled cider just has this eggy smell. I keep getting told this will go away but its been in the bottle now for about 5 months and it doesn't seem like its getting any better.

(FYI its a Mixed Berry's Cider)

  • 1
    Sulfury egg smell? Like egg that gone bad? – Mołot Apr 14 '16 at 15:01
  • yep exactly that. I tried a bottle after a week of bottling and it was defiantly much worse, but I havn't noticed any real difference in the past few months. trying a bottle about once every 2 weeks. – Tim Mahood Apr 14 '16 at 15:03
up vote 4 down vote accepted

Some yeast strains give sulfur smell during fermentation. That's perfectly normal. If it's in the air, it's no longer in your brew! The fact you can smell it so strongly indicates it is, literally, going away now. It comes from metabolism of sulfur amino-acids. Sooner they are degenerated and sulfur is released, the less chance it'll get released in the bottle.

If it's already in the bottles, then it either is infection, or you bottled too soon. If that's the former, sorry, nothing you can do. If later, you can try to pour it back to fermentation vessel, add fresh yeast and give it more time. It won't get better in closed bottles, because sulfur gases have no way to escape them. Airlock or blowoff tube will work all right.

If it'll still smell like that after two weeks, then you will have a problem. But right now it's nothing to worry about.

  • That's Handy to know thanks. I guess I must have done something wrong tho as I bottled this batch about 4 months ago, – Tim Mahood Apr 14 '16 at 15:12
  • @TimMahood See update to my answer, please. Was you bottle conditioning it? – Mołot Apr 14 '16 at 15:15
  • yep was primed and bottled, even tho I would force carb it isn't that easily done here in Northern Ireland. Getting the gas is just too hard for a small time hobbyist. – Tim Mahood Apr 14 '16 at 15:20
  • @TimMahood there is a good chance you bottled before yeast-produced sulfur gases was released. No harm in trying to let them go. Pouring down the drain is an option now, but it will be an option after two weeks, as well, so no point in hurrying. Pour it back to your fermentation barrel or whatever, put airlock on, add fresh yeast if possible, and give it two weeks. At worst, you'll waste a bit of time nd bit of yeast. At best, you will save your cider. If it's still bad after 2 weeks - sorry. – Mołot Apr 14 '16 at 15:24
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    Sounds good, I've accepted its a learning process so I wasn't expecting everything to be plane sailing. Yeast is a fascinating subject which I've hardly scratched the surface of. Cheers for advice – Tim Mahood Apr 14 '16 at 15:45

Sulphur needs to gas off, it's usually from a slow fermentation that wasn't vigorous enough.

If it's already attenuated there's a couple solutions. But both require putting the bottled cider back into a fermentor.

1) boost it up as a douple cider or Apple wine 4lb cane sugar to 5gal will give it +.040 points, then you can pitch a wine yeast to get it going again.

2) Use C02 to gas it off. Either use a hose to the bottom of the fermentor and give it slow c02 to simulate the c02 in a fermentation, or keg and force carbonate the release c02 by shaking and releasing the valve. Do either until no sulfur is smelled.

OK all. My first cider try. I used a Brewers Best apple cider kit. After fermentation was done (about 10 days), I opened it to be knocked over by sulphur smell, aka rhino farts. However, it tasted ok and gravity was right on at 1.004. This has not gone to bottle yet. I saw some suggestions about adding copper, so I cut a piece of standard plumbing copper pipe I had laying around, 1/2 inch I think, long enough to be over the top of the liquid, but still be able to close my fermenter. I used sandpaper to brighten the outside, ran a small piece through the inside, then quick wash and sanitize. I stirred the cider lightly with it and left in there and sealed it back up. Checked after a day and it was significantly better. Another light stir and closed it. Next day, the smell was completely gone! It cost $0.

  • Don’t add copper to anything post fermentation. Copper can leach out of the metal and into your cider, beer,wine,or mead. Now you are drinking heavy metal and can get copper poisoning. Pre fermentation it is ok to use copper. The yeast will remove it from the beverage. I wouldn’t count on a super short bottle deferment to fully recover the copper. I would pour this batch out and chalk it up to a learning experience. – Peter Campen Oct 21 '17 at 17:02
  • Putting a clean copper pipe in the brew is a novel way to capture sulphur based compounds! Interesting idea....I very much doubt enough copper would leach into the beer enough to be noticed let alone cause harm. Copper water pipes are common throughout Europe. I do agree that the sulphurous odour is usually transient and correct conditioning will remove it. – barking.pete Nov 18 '17 at 18:12

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