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Old 12-22-2008, 03:55 PM   #11
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I just use warm tap watter. Generally if your comfortable with the temperature the yeast will be to.

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Old 12-22-2008, 10:39 PM   #12
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I gotta say I've had a similar experience as the original poster. It's actually uncanny--I was going to post this exact topic this evening.

I brewed a foreign extra stout on Saturday and although I usually direct-pitch when I use dry yeast, this time I figured I'd rehydrate per the recommendation in "Brewing Classic Styles" by Zainasheff & Palmer (I was using a variation of the recipe on p.171).

About halfway through the boil, I boiled about a cup of tap water for 5 minutes, covered it, and let it cool. After the wort was finished boiling, I started the wort chilling process and checked on my cup of water. It was down to 91°F so I sprinkled 11g of Nottingham and re-covered it. Once the wort was down to about 75°F I checked on the yeast-water, and the yeast was thoroughly wet-out, forming a uniform layer of sediment at the bottom of the pan. I stirred up the yeast into a slurry and pitched it into the cooled and oxygenated wort. There couldn't have been more than about 10°F temperature difference between the slurry and the wort, so I have no reason to suspect the yeast cells were shocked. I pitched at 6PM Saturday.

By noon on Sunday, I expected fermentation to be well underway (my last 10 batches or so have all taken off in a matter of a few hours and most have finished primary fermentation within 48 hours.) But, now at 18 hours after pitching, there was no activity whatsoever. The wort was sitting at 64°F with no krauesen. I direct-pitched another 11g of dry Nottingham, and by late evening, fermentation was underway.

I haven't given up on re-hydrating, but I'm open to suggestions before I do it again. I actually figured I might dip-out a cup of wort during the boil and let it cool to a suitable temperature and use it for re-hydrating, rather than boiling tap water. But now I see in this thread that the use of wort is not recommended. Any ideas on why?

I'll have to look back through my notes from past batches, but I'm quite certain I've re-hydrated dry yeast in a similar manner a couple times before and everything worked out fine. Puzzling, indeed. To mangine77, I'd still pitch new yeast. Even at 48 hours later, I think you can still hold out some hope that you will be able to make decent beer. And for the future, you should always have a few packets of common dry yeast on-hand for such emergencies. I make it a point to keep US-05, Nottingham, S-33, S-04, & T-58 hanging around in the fridge.

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Old 12-22-2008, 10:47 PM   #13
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I checked on the yeast-water, and the yeast was thoroughly wet-out, forming a uniform layer of sediment at the bottom of the pan.
That's strange. Anytime I have rehydrated dry yeast, it mostly floats on top and foams up after about 15 mins. Did it all really sink to the bottom and just sit there?
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Old 12-22-2008, 11:05 PM   #14
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At first, it floats and spreads out evenly across the top of the water. This is always what happens when I pitch yeast. But once it's wet-out, the yeast grains break up and "dissolve" into the water or wort. (I use the word "dissolve" loosely because I think of it as more of a suspension.) At any rate, when I checked on the yeast-water later on, the majority of the yeast was settled to the bottom.

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Old 12-23-2008, 02:48 AM   #15
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I've tested the impact of rehydration and it's valid from the point of preserving the max number of cells. Is it possible your thermometer is off and you're pitching into 110F water?

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Old 12-23-2008, 11:50 AM   #16
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I've tested the impact of rehydration and it's valid from the point of preserving the max number of cells. Is it possible your thermometer is off and you're pitching into 110F water?
Well, that's what I'm starting to think. So, it's been 48 hours and nothing is happening. I took a real quick peek inside, nothin.

I'm just sitting here waiting for 9am to roll around, so I can go to the HBS and pick up another pack of S-05.

What do you think the odds are that this still turns out to be a decent beer and doesn't get contaminated with all this lagtime??
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Old 12-23-2008, 12:02 PM   #17
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In my case, I used a digital probe thermometer for both the water that re-hydrated the yeast, and the wort that was chilling. The reading I got with the digital probe thermometer when I finished chilling the wort agreed with the reading on the liquid crystal thermometer I got a few minutes later after racking the wort to the fermenter. So there was one check to make sure the thermometer wasn't flaking out on me. It's still possible that something was amiss, but I think it's unlikely that my probe thermometer was way off.

mangine77, just repitch and think positive. You've already done all the hard work. Dropping in another $3 worth of yeast with even an outside chance of saving the effort and cost of brewing a new batch is a no-brainer. Yeah, your chances of infection have gone up a bit, but if your process was fairly sanitary you could still be looking at good clean wort that's just begging to throw a yeast-party.

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Old 07-29-2009, 03:33 PM   #18
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I forgot to boil my water first last on my last batch, do you think this will be a big deal? Water from the tap must be pretty sanitary right?

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Old 07-29-2009, 03:43 PM   #19
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I forgot to boil my water first last on my last batch, do you think this will be a big deal? Water from the tap must be pretty sanitary right?
I used to top off with straight tap water with no problem. If the yeast take off, I don't see a problem. Although it still is ideal to use sterile water.
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Old 07-29-2009, 09:45 PM   #20
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I screwed up one batch. I hydrated the yeast according to instructions, but I used warm tap water. I found out later my tap water (well) sucks. The beer is the worst I have made. Still drinkable, but not good. The next batch I just sprinkled the yeast on the wort and had no problems. Good beer.

I generally use liquid yeast with a starter, but tried the new dry stuff.

Now I wash and save the liquid yeast. I just have better luck.

David

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