So a while back I bought some pasteurized peach cider from a shop on the side of the road. The "100% juice with added ingredients" type of stuff, ya feel me?

I bought an airlock for it because The label says it can ferment and build up pressure so I didn't really want it to explode on my counter and such. Well it's been fermenting for around 3 or 4 months now and I just opened it and the thing smells like wine. I definitely didn't try to put effort into brewing or anything, I was just lazy and never drank it. My question is: is this stuff salvageable? Or should I throw it out before it kills me?

Don't really have any experience with this stuff so any kind of help on what to do with it next would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance!


2 Answers 2


chthon is correct about the fact that pasteurized peach juice will not ferment, with one REALLY big caveat: It won't ferment until you open it. The moment you open the vessel you've exposed it to the yeast in the air and from that moment on it's possible for it to spontaneously ferment. I have fermented peach and strawberry juice in exactly this way before, and both turned out quite good.

Generally, you have to give it a little encouragement; leave the lid open with a cloth over it, aerate it a bit, that sort of thing. The only problem I foresee with your peach wine is that you've fermented at (I'm guessing?) room temperature. Fermenting warm with something as sugary as peach juice will likely get you some rocket-fuel tasting off flavors. Luckily these will mellow out a bit if you let it age a while.


Well, let's clear one thing up. If it says "pasteurised" then it can not ferment. And if it can ferment, then it is not pasteurised.

So, if it did ferment then your peach cider has probably turned into peach wine. If it smells like wine, then it will probably be OK to drink. Be wary of stinking or musky smells. Your wine could of course turn out to be too acid to drink, even if it does smell like wine.

However, although I make grape wine at home, I do not have any knowledge of fruit wines in general. So I hope someone else on the forum can help you further with things to take into account.

What was your goal exactly in buying this? Did you want to brew something, or did you just want something to drink on a later date?

  • Thanks! However, I don't believe you know what you're talking about with your "let's clear one thing up" comment. No offense, because I know little about the matter & have only very light reading about fermentation, but I've read from multiple sources that pasteurized cider can absolutely ferment. Not to mention I am holding a growler of peach cider that says pasteurized right here on the label and has, in fact, fermented. Maybe you are confusing pasteurization with adding preservatives? Again I'm not trying to offend you. Maybe I'm the one who is Wrong, but could u expand on that more?
    – Taylor
    Oct 3, 2017 at 20:23
  • In any case, yeah honestly I'm just a big fan of fruit juices and my laziness took over and I ended up forgetting I had it. The cider began to smell alcoholic so I didn't drink it and it was building pressure so I bought an airlock to keep the growler from bursting. Now I have peach wine I guess. Looks like I need to maybe strain the gunk out of It or something?
    – Taylor
    Oct 3, 2017 at 20:26
  • What I meant was, that if it is pasteurized, it can not start fermenting by itself, because most micro-organisms should be finished off. Of course, pasteurization is not sterilisation, so maybe someone else could shed light on this part of the issue, like the minimum temperature for pasteurization and the kill temperature for yeast.
    – chthon
    Oct 4, 2017 at 6:43
  • You would not strain the gunk out. What you should do is rack you wine into another (cleaned and disinfected) vessel using a racking cane, making sure that you do not disturb the bottom layer.
    – chthon
    Oct 4, 2017 at 6:46

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