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Old 04-20-2009, 06:33 PM   #1
thelorax121
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Default Question about underpitching?

I brewed up a robust porter on Saturday, and was forced to pitch a smack pack of wyeast American Ale after it had been prepping for about 5 hours, because the LHBS was out of dry yeast. I know that I under pitched the yeast, and fermentation got off to a vigorous start about 24 hours after pitching. My question is, will this underpitch result in my porter being overly estery, or will the heavy flavors of the beer mask them somewhat, and also, will I have to repitch some yeast to get it to fully attenuate? The OG was 1.065, and I am fermenting at about 69-70 degrees. I am about to rack some blonde ale fermented with safale 05 and I could repitch a portion of the slurry today to overcome the inital underpitch if that would make any difference. Thanks for the input.

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Old 04-20-2009, 07:23 PM   #2
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24 hours isn't a problem. The attenuation range for Wyeast American Ale isn't much less than S-05

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Old 04-20-2009, 09:16 PM   #3
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I get more fusel taste when I underpitch. You shouldn't have to pitch more yeast. They will eventually eat everything they can.

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Old 04-20-2009, 10:55 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketman768 View Post
You shouldn't have to pitch more yeast. They will eventually eat everything they can.
This is not always true. One of the major problems with not pitching enough yeast is underattenuation.
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Old 04-21-2009, 02:59 PM   #5
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Ok, well Ill check the gravity in a few days and see if I need to give the yeasties a bit of back up

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Old 04-21-2009, 07:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by double_e5 View Post
This is not always true. One of the major problems with not pitching enough yeast is underattenuation.
I think in this case he's fine. 1056 is a pretty good attenuator and being a more complex beer, it should mask any possible off flavors.
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Old 04-21-2009, 07:57 PM   #7
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Underpitching is not all about underattenuation. By underpitching you are forcing the yeast to bud off too many daughter cells. You really want to keep it to 4 or 5 buds. You get more than 7 or so going on it scars the cell wall and leaves it far less pliable, meaning they have a harder time regulating what goes in and out. This leaves a lot of alcohol inside the cell which is one of the least healthy things for it and will lead to no re absorption of diacetyl or acetaldehyde and possible autolysis.

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Old 04-21-2009, 08:02 PM   #8
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You will be absolutely fine. I do not make a starter for my robust porter and I never have problems with it. I usually use American II (1274???) for that beer, but 1056 will do just fine. I would not worry about it.

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