Happy HolidaySs Giveaway - Winners Re-Re-Re-Re-Drawn - 24 hours to Claim!

Get your HBT Growlers, Shirts and Membership before the Rush!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Recipes/Ingredients > Safale S-04: wtf?
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 09-01-2009, 07:33 AM   #1
robertjohnson
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Walla Walla, Wa.
Posts: 93
Default Safale S-04: wtf?

I've been having problems with off-flavors from S-04. It tastes dirty and musty, almost like dry-rotted wood. It's the same exact flavor in only the batches fermented with this yeast and get more noticeable during the conditioning process. I even split a batch three-ways to check on yeast flavors and only this yeast produced them. I could describe all other controls I've used to isolate the flavor, but suffice it to say that it's definitely the yeast, not infection and not oxidation or anything else. So, what's up?

I've usually fermented this in the 67-71 range. It's a little high, but it didn't take off at all for me below 65 until I brought it back up to temperature. Others in the thread have said they've had success below 65, so I'm wondering what's up with my yeast handling...

I cool down boiled water to around 86-92, pitch the yeast into it according to the mr malty calculator, wait a while, then gradually add wort to bring them into equilibrium at my fermentation temps. I do the same thing for every yeast and feel like I've got the process nailed. Works for everything else. What else could it be with this yeast? I've heard Jamil say certain yeasts work better for certain set-ups but, come on, wood fungi!?!?

__________________
robertjohnson is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-01-2009, 03:35 PM   #2
craven_morhead
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Denver
Posts: 263
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Hm... you're pitching fairly hot; maybe -04 doesn't handle hot pitching temps as well? I've gotten tasty beers out of it without any of the musty flavors, and my fermenting temps have been similar.

__________________

Primary: Cascade/Amarillo IPA

craven_morhead is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-01-2009, 03:49 PM   #3
mmb
FNG
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
mmb's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Mid-Michigan
Posts: 24,945
Liked 3204 Times on 3106 Posts
Likes Given: 181

Default

Your "pitch" is your re-hydration process, correct?

You actually pitch to wort at the 68 - 71 temp, right?

I do S-04 at 65 - 68 but it's gone as high as low 70s without going musty/dusty or wood.

__________________
White Dog Aleworks and Drafthouse
mmb is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-01-2009, 03:54 PM   #4
menschmaschine
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Delaware
Posts: 3,278
Liked 34 Times on 28 Posts

Default

Your procedures seem sound. I've fermented S-04 at 71-72 before and never had these types of flavors. I know you said it's not an infection, but with the type of flavor you're getting and the fact that it gets worse during conditioning seems to point in that direction. It's worth reconsideration anyway.

__________________

END TRANSMISSION

menschmaschine is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-01-2009, 04:07 PM   #5
robertjohnson
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Walla Walla, Wa.
Posts: 93
Default

Yeah, sorry, I pitch the yeast at fermentation temperature but rehydrate it at 86-92. I thought it was infection at first too, menschmaschine, but I've fermented multiple batches at once and the yeast is really the only common denominator. And it's been in every safale 04 batch. Here's what I'm thinking:

1. I also do long primaries and I'm wondering if maybe that has anything to do with it. Since it rips through fermentation fast and then flocculates really fast, it sits on the yeast cake for about two and a half weeks without much really going on. I haven't had any problems with this for any other yeasts, but this could be what's imparting that flavor. I don't know, would that make the difference? What sort of schedules do other people use with this?

2. I also condition at about 70-75* in my basement, so that could be it. That would also explain it showing up only after bottling. What temps are other people conditioning at?

If anyone lives in walla walla (doubtful), I'd gladly show what I'm talking about.

__________________

robertjohnson is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-01-2009, 04:37 PM   #6
bierhaus15
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: , New York
Posts: 1,514
Liked 76 Times on 56 Posts
Likes Given: 10

Default

I had previously stopped using s-04 as all my beers brewed with it had a distinct yeasty-tang that as you said, got stronger as it aged. I even entered one of the beers into a comp (it was a special bitter) to see what the judges thought. The beer scored a 33 and one of the judges commented that the beer tasted like I had used s04 and fermented it too high. He was right.

Now whenever I use s04 I ferment it as low as it will tolerate. No more off flavors.

__________________
bierhaus15 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-01-2009, 04:42 PM   #7
menschmaschine
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Delaware
Posts: 3,278
Liked 34 Times on 28 Posts

Default

Theoretically, if the fermented beer sits for a relatively long time and at relatively high temperatures on the cake, it could produce off-flavors from decaying yeast cells. Not autolysis, per se, but decaying yeast cells, which decay faster at higher temperatures. Perhaps S-04 is more prone to producing off-flavors in this way. You could contact Fermentis and see what they say.

__________________

END TRANSMISSION

menschmaschine is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-01-2009, 06:09 PM   #8
Saccharomyces
Be good to your yeast...
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Saccharomyces's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Pflugerville, Texas
Posts: 5,444
Liked 85 Times on 54 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default

I really think you need to keep this yeast on the cool side because it can get quite estery over 68*F in my experience.

By 67-71 do you mean room temp or actual fermenter temp? If you aren't using any fermentation temp control a 70*F room temp will be a 77*F ferment which will be quite estery with any ale strain.

My guess is that it's just really estery and you personally don't like the ester profile of the yeast, so I suggest using a different yeast.

__________________
[How to Calculate Mash Efficiency | Do I Need a Yeast Starter? | My Ghetto Fermentation Chamber | Twitter | 6 Gal. HDPE Fermenters | Slanting Yeast | No Sparge Brewing]

Quote:
Originally Posted by Soperbrew
big brother only monitors facebook and untappd
Saccharomyces is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-02-2009, 02:48 AM   #9
robertjohnson
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Walla Walla, Wa.
Posts: 93
Default

I ferment in a water bath that sits in a defunct refrigerator and base my temperature readings on the bath. I assume it can't be more than a few degrees warmer inside during active fermentation, and I only let it hit 70 after the krausen has subsided. I guess I could always get one of those strips to stick on your fermenter. In any case, I'll try one more batch with it (eventually) and keep it at 65.

Menschmachine: Yeah, I was thinking that since it ferments and flocculates so quickly that it might also be more prone to producing dead yeast flavors. I'll see if I can find anything out.

__________________
robertjohnson is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-02-2009, 02:57 AM   #10
The Pol
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 11,774
Liked 75 Times on 64 Posts
Likes Given: 14

Default

I like S-04... not A LOT, but I like it.

I keep the fermentation at about 65F, seems to work well.

I have never had the flavors that you describe... I use this yeast in my Ofest and Holiday Ales and they are both superbly malty and clean.

I second what Sacc. sayes... get it warm, 68F and up... and it will get a little English on ya!

__________________
The Pol is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply



Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Safale WB-06 Evan! Recipes/Ingredients 22 02-21-2013 05:02 AM
Using Safale # US-05 Kauai_Kahuna Mead Forum 13 10-13-2011 06:03 PM
Safale WB 06 neuron555 Recipes/Ingredients 12 07-28-2009 03:14 AM
safale k-97 Fat Bar Steward Recipes/Ingredients 1 12-02-2008 05:00 AM
safale 56 / 05 jarvis311 Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 17 05-25-2007 02:06 PM



Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS