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Old 03-24-2011, 02:12 PM   #1
KoedBrew
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Default Easiest Yeast Starter!

So Yeast starters are crucial, Right? I think so it has made a world of difference in my beers. I don't know if everyone does it this way but I think it is much easier than DME.

After I gather the correct amount of Wort for a batch of beer, I add an extra 1/2 gallon to a gallon of hot water to the Mash tun as I start my boil...
I let that water sit in the mash tun until I get my boil going or until I have some spare time. I then get one of the empty spring water jugs I used and collect as much wort runoff as I can from those grains. Last time I got over a half gallon of 1.030 wort...then stick it in the fridge.

Make sure SWMBO doesn't think it is Ice tea (happened!)

Fast forward to 3 days prior to brew day, pull out that jug pour it in a pot, boil for 10-15 minutes, cool, and place in your favorite yeast starter jar with yeast, and boom it will be foaming in a couple hours!

Much better than DME if you ask me??

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Old 03-24-2011, 02:15 PM   #2
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I've thought about this as well. Yet, people do say that the yeast cells need to get their start in a wort that is close to the target of your actual wort. I'm sure others can explain why. Here again, I guess if you like it and it works well for you...

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Old 03-24-2011, 02:43 PM   #3
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I doubt that a smack pack is the same OG as your proposed beer. I hydrate safale 04 in cooled boiled water for 15 minutes then add a teaspoon of brewing sugar and stir / agitate well to let in some air. In 2 hours I usually have a 3 inch rocky head formed, when I add it to my brew.....

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Old 03-24-2011, 02:56 PM   #4
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I have not used dry yeast in beer in over a year. I just like the smack packs and vials better.

@ Kansas - you don't want it the same gravity you actually want to build up to that gravity. I can make it whatever gravity I want I just have to boil off some of the water.
Edit: It was actually 1.030 when I captured it from the mash but a 15 minute boil on that small amount of wort turns to about 1.040.

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Old 03-24-2011, 03:06 PM   #5
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For giggles I took the last runnings on my last brew on threw the dregs of a Rogue bottle in there. A week later, I had a nice layer of Pacman! Woot! The way I sparge I tend to have extra liquid left over, so I'll be taking to this method a bit more often since it's easy and efficient.

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Old 03-24-2011, 03:25 PM   #6
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Ha! I plan on stealing, sorry borrowing Ommegang yeast, and I was thinking about taking some of Vinny's Brett from some of his beers.

Ommegang uses a proprietary Belgian strain for all their beers and I think I will us a bottle of Hennepin to develop my own batch of it

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Old 03-24-2011, 10:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
@ Kansas - you don't want it the same gravity you actually want to build up to that gravity. I can make it whatever gravity I want I just have to boil off some of the water.
It was 1.010 when I captured it from the mash but a 15 minute boil on that small amount of wort turns to about 1.020. If you want a 1.040 just boil longer...

I guess it sounded to me like you were using the 1.01 as your starter. We all seem to do things a bit differently. So far I've tried to stay close to that 1.03-1.04 mark that Palmer recommends. I get the boil it down idea. Not sure I would have thought of it, but it makes sense.
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Old 03-24-2011, 11:25 PM   #8
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It's a lot easier and cheaper to throw some extra grain in on mash/brew day, bottle the starter and use the starter for your next brew. The critical thing is to make sure your sanitation is sound and your starter is free of bugs. I find if i leave the starter out at room temps, by next week any bad bacteria would already start to take hold. Like I said in another post, I'm done buying expensive DME.

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Old 03-24-2011, 11:27 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kansasbrew View Post
I've thought about this as well. Yet, people do say that the yeast cells need to get their start in a wort that is close to the target of your actual wort. I'm sure others can explain why. Here again, I guess if you like it and it works well for you...
It's really important to make your starter at about 1.040 OG or so. You're growing yeast, and you want reproduction. Any higher OG and you may start stressing the yeast. You want to make every thing optimal for yeast reproduction, and definitely DON'T want to simulate your OG. I have some beers that have an OG of 1.090! YOu don't want that in a starter, you want to propagate yeast!
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Old 03-25-2011, 12:09 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KoedBrew View Post
I have not used dry yeast in beer in over a year. I just like the smack packs and vials better.

@ Kansas - you don't want it the same gravity you actually want to build up to that gravity. I can make it whatever gravity I want I just have to boil off some of the water.
It was 1.010 when I captured it from the mash but a 15 minute boil on that small amount of wort turns to about 1.020. If you want a 1.040 just boil longer...
This is a great idea. Its so simple and a why didnt I think of this. I truly dont enjoy making starters with DME . Its the only thing I dont like about brewing. I would sooner boil down some last runnings to whatever gravity and pitch instead of messing around with a powder.
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