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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > 7 month old yeast, opinions???




View Poll Results: Should I reuse the Yeast?
Yes 11 73.33%
No 1 6.67%
Try it and find out. 3 20.00%
Screw it, just drink the beer off the top. 0 0%
Voters: 15. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-26-2012, 10:55 PM   #1
hotrodhed120
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Default 7 month old yeast, opinions???

I have some Lallemand Windsor yeast sitting in the bottom of a gallon jar that has been in the bottom of my refrigerator for the past 7 months waiting on my next wheat beer. Before storing in the fridge:
1) washed two yeast cakes and stored in one jar.
2) made a 1.050 DME starter about 3/4 gallon and once the yeast settled from the first step I decanted the liquid off the yeast and added the starter wort on top of the yeast.
3) I immediately put the yeast in the fridge.
Once the yeast cooled off it did not produce much gas, but over the past couple months there has been no excess co2 and over the past couple of weeks a dark tint has discolored the very top of the yeast cake. I honestly planned on using this yeast before now but due to time constraints I have not been able to brew since May. I would like to use this yeast in the next week or so but if you think this may be a mistake using yeast this old let me know.





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Old 12-26-2012, 10:59 PM   #2
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I have used yeast that old, I am making a starter with some right now.



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Old 12-26-2012, 11:42 PM   #3
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Awesome, I really didn't want to throw this away!

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Old 12-27-2012, 12:48 AM   #4
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Default Ditto

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gear101 View Post
I have used yeast that old, I am making a starter with some right now.
I also have the same yeast that is older than that. I placed it in a starter on Christmas eve.
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Old 12-27-2012, 06:20 AM   #5
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Another issue is that Windsor is not typically a wheat beer yeast, it is a British strain typically used in those styles of beer. Reuse the yeast, but in a different type of beer.

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Old 12-27-2012, 06:21 PM   #6
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Look, smell, taste, then decide. It shouldn't taste meaty or dead. It should be light tan not brown, and it should have a fresh yeasty smell.

If that's all fine, pitch it into a starter. For my money I'd buy another pack for $3.99, but that's just me.

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Old 12-27-2012, 07:49 PM   #7
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I misspoke the the type of yeast, it is actually Lallemand Munich. I had just sorted through my yeast in the fridge and that stuck in my head for some reason. I think I'll try letting it warm up and if it takes off in the wort it is in now I'll probably use it, otherwise I don't think I'll mess with it. I usually don't do starters, unless it is ~5 gallons. I would rather use this second gen. yeast rather than starting over with a new package of yeast.

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Old 12-27-2012, 07:53 PM   #8
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How about option 5) have it tested. I would be happy to do it for free. For details see this:
http://woodlandbrew.blogspot.com/p/normal-0-false-false-false-en-us-x-none.html

That way you will have a much better idea of how many cells you are starting with, how many are viable, and if there is a considerable amount of bacteria. Recovering low viability yeast is simple enough. If it has a fair amount of bacteria there are a several things that can be done as well.

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Old 12-27-2012, 07:54 PM   #9
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Prepare a fresh starter, and use a scoop (1/4 cup?) of this, aiming for the good stuff on the bottom and staying clear of the dark stuff. It will wake up and take off. Yeast is very resilient.

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Old 12-27-2012, 08:02 PM   #10
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Yep if it smells fine and doesn't look black or something, go for it. I've regularly used yeast from more than 2 seasons ago and no issues. It's hardy stuff...



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