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Old 03-21-2007, 12:50 AM   #1
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Default OLD YEAST :mad:

Ok, the other day, I brewed a Victorian Porter. Good recipe, much anticipated. I found out my wyeast pack (London III) was a propagator and not an activator-- I made a starter, but this was for a 12 gallon batch-- soooooo. . ./

when ready to pitch, I frantically looked for some yeast that would be usable in proper pitching numbers-- I had some harvested WL English Ale, about 1-2 months old, large amount of slurry-- so I pitched it.

Took 36 hours to start, had a vigorous ferment for about 7 days, then essentially stopped--- except it still bubbled about once per 60 seconds.

My FG was where I expected it, and I tasted it-- funny off aroma with a funny off flavor-- o/w it tasted like a Porter.

I guess I need some reassurance-- this was the 3rd generation for this yeast-- I'm afraid it did something a bit different than was expected.

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Old 03-21-2007, 12:53 AM   #2
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What kind of beer was the yeast in previously? You may not have made what you intended, but at least it is beer.

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Old 03-21-2007, 12:57 AM   #3
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the beer previously fermented by the strain was an amber ale. I figured it was close enough.

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Old 03-21-2007, 01:00 AM   #4
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Fast fermentation, if 7 days is fast for 12 gallons, can lead to high diacetyl levels (and other by-products for that matter) which will give it an off flavour. The good news is that the yeast will clean that up so long as you leave it on the cake. Give it a week or two as you have nothing to lose. If the batch is crap then it'll be that way in two weeks. If not, you've got some good beer to drink. Bubbling once every 60 seconds is still rather active in my books and it sounds as though the remaining yeast is probably doing exaclty what I said.

The hardest skill to learn when brewing is patience.

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Old 03-21-2007, 01:07 AM   #5
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It doesn't taste like diacetyl-- I've tasted that problem before. Actually there is more of an aroma problem than anything-- I think the flavor will mellow. My concern is if the yeast was either impure or lacked genetic stability-- like I said, essentially, this was the third generation-- I initially made a starter. . . didn't use it, stored it, made another starter, pitched into an amber, then bled it off, stored it, and then used it for the porter.

I'm wondering if the off aroma/flavor is due to the yeast becoming a little "altered."


I think the beer will be drinkable given some time. Although my initial thought was "uh-oh, I f'd this one up."

It still bubbles about once ever 90 seconds, btw, even in secondary--although its a conical fermentor secondary, so I'm sure there's a small yeast cake left. .

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Old 03-21-2007, 03:13 AM   #6
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Well, I take the one bubble per 90 seconds back.

Actually, I looked at my records-- I brewed this back on March 1st. I let it sit in primary until Sunday, when I bled off the trub/yeast. At that time, it was giving off a small bubble every 90 seconds. I went to take a look tonight, and its bubbling again, once ever 20-30 seconds or so. It's actually increased in frequency.

I've never had a yeast pretty much stop, only to revive itself. I think I'll take another gravity reading in about a week. The OG on this was about 1.066, and the initially FG reading was 1.020, which is about in line for the expected attenuation with the English Ale strain I used.

What's up with this??

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Old 03-21-2007, 03:31 AM   #7
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Sounds like your yeast has been born again; look out for copies of Watchtower around your fermenters.

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Old 03-21-2007, 03:32 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Catfish
Sounds like your yeast has been born again; look out for copies of Watchtower around your fermenters.
LOL. Now that's funny
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Old 03-21-2007, 04:28 AM   #9
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I think my last 4-6 batches have been less than stellar and believe it's been because of stretching the limit on my yeast slurry saving. It's not that I go too deep in generations but it may be 2+ months before I get back to it. I had to dump a 5gl batch because of this I believe.

I think I'll be happy getting 2-3 batches out of a single vial but only if I do it within 4-6 weeks max. I'm hoping that's my case anyways otherwise I got other problems .

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Old 03-21-2007, 12:35 PM   #10
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RDWHAHB. Green beer is green beer. Sometimes, my beers that turn out great in the end taste like monkey spit in carboy; other times, beers that taste great in carboy turn up wacked-out in the end. Don't start fretting yet. Once you have two whole 5-gal batches that are spoiled/infected (like me), then you can fret...

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