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Old 11-07-2012, 01:46 PM   #1
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Default cottage cheesy smack pack anyone??

hi everyone, opinions wanted please! i get all my stuff in the post since there aren't any local supply places here. everything is delivered the next day since the country is small. my wyeast packs have always arrived in good health and fermented away in the starters. but the last one i got was weird. it's 1968 london, with a manufacture date this september. it was ballooned out as if smacked when it arrived, fully inflated but not quite about to explode. of course the nutrient pack was already broken. i read around a bit and saw that other people have sometimes had this happen but that the yeast was fine. since i want to brew pretty soon i decided to throw this into the starter and check how much yeast i harvested at the end, which i can just rinse and measure the slurry volume. rather than complain and have another re-sent. when i opened the package after giving it a good shake and poured it into the starter it was cottage cheesy, really clumpy. i have never seen this before, even in a more flocculent yeast. i gave it a good shake and it seemed to go into suspension, so it's stirring away now (i'm at work so i won't check it for a few hours). i resealed the empty pack and took it to work where i pipetted in a ml of sterile water to rinse and then took off a ml into a fresh tube, and it was really chunky cheesy. i shook and vortexed, it's still chunky. i will plate some of this out to see if odd things grow, or if nothing grows. but meanwhile has anyone seen this before?? how can it be lumpy/chunky?? thanks for any opinions or suggestions.

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Old 11-07-2012, 01:53 PM   #2
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There are so many different strains of yeast, and not all of them look the same, many indeed look like cottage cheese, and even form what I call "krausen Kurdels" on the surface of the beer.

Relax.

Fermentation is ugly and stinky, even when perfectly normal.

Remember the ONLY way to know how a yeast is performing is to make a starter with it. Not judging it by appearances. Make a starter and you'll know whether the yeast is viable or not.

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Old 11-07-2012, 04:44 PM   #3
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hm, has anyone had chunkiness specifically with fullers/1968? i have used it a few times before and never seen anything like this. well i should know in a few hours how healthy the yeast is, and i have enough time to build up the cell count no matter what.
thanks

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Old 11-07-2012, 05:26 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dinnerstick
hm, has anyone had chunkiness specifically with fullers/1968? i have used it a few times before and never seen anything like this. well i should know in a few hours how healthy the yeast is, and i have enough time to build up the cell count no matter what.
thanks
Yup, 1968 is some pretty chunky stuff, not to worry
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Old 11-07-2012, 05:33 PM   #5
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Same here. Cottage cheese looking. Made a pumpkin ale with it, and the beer came out great.

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Old 11-07-2012, 06:39 PM   #6
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Shake the heck out of it before opening and maybe it won't be as chunky. I've seen some pretty good chunks from some yeast starters and vials.

Now if it SMELLS cheesy, you might have a problem.

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Old 11-07-2012, 07:10 PM   #7
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1968 is extremely clumpy. When it's churning on my stir-plate, I refer to it as the "egg drop soup":


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Old 11-07-2012, 07:31 PM   #8
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great, thanks everyone for the reassurance. i've just never seen it like that before, so was being cautious!! i still don't get why my 'lab sample' stayed very chunky after some heavy borderline abusive shaking, but upon returning home the starter is clearly happy as a pig in detritus.

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Old 11-08-2012, 06:25 AM   #9
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at 18 hours the starter was normal for an active starter, creamy and frothy, and at 24h looked like the canucker's flocky starter video above. finished fermenting, packed up, sign in the window, gone fishing. excellent. i know i'm repeating myself but i've just never seen this from this strain before. the last few times i used it was harvested, stored a few months, rinsed, and regrown in new starters, i wonder if my memory is fading and i selected for less flocculent cells. anyways thanks again all

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