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Old 02-01-2013, 09:30 PM   #11
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(b) I didn't know there were even dry lager yeasts. Example?

(c) I assume you mean for a 10-gallon batch. 2 liters in a 5 gallon batch is slightly under what Mrmalty recommends (3 liters).
(b) as someone else noted, W-34/70 and S-23 from Fermentis. Both are very good; I've done quite well in competitions with beers made using them.

(c) yes, OP specified a 10 gallon batch.
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Old 02-02-2013, 12:48 AM   #12
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As per a concern above, we have never had any problems brewing our ales with a single packet of yeast without a starter, they have always hit their fg numbers and the activity usually kicks in full throttle during the first night.
Do you mean packet of dry yeast? If so, you don't make a starter for dry yeast but you should rehydrate it according to the manufacturer specs. One is enough for most OG's.
If you meant liquid smack pack or vial of liquid yeast, yes you are underpitching. Run the numbers in Mr. Malty if you don't believe me. Just because the yeast "worked" [with airlock activity and FG numbers reached] does not mean it was an optimal fermentation. Underpitching has an effect on flavor. Wyeast website snip: "Under-pitching ..will produce an aroma and flavor profile that is less than desirable..".

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Old 02-02-2013, 01:51 AM   #13
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If you meant liquid smack pack or vial of liquid yeast, yes you are underpitching. Run the numbers in Mr. Malty if you don't believe me. Just because the yeast "worked" [with airlock activity and FG numbers reached] does not mean it was an optimal fermentation. Underpitching has an effect on flavor. Wyeast website snip: "Under-pitching ..will produce an aroma and flavor profile that is less than desirable..".
Wow, I ran the numbers on Malty like you suggested and you're right. We usually use the dry packets but on occasion we have used the Wyeast smack packs. They may not have hit optimum fermentation but I havent noticed any off flavors so I guess we got lucky.

That is kind of misleading though, because right on the package Wyeast claims it "is designed to inoculate 5 gallons of wort with the same pitch rate recommended by professional brewers." And on their site they say that it is good for 5 gallons of wort up to 1.060og.

I wonder since you release the nutrient and let the pack incubate and swell up for 3+ hours if it acts as a makeshift starter to increase the count before you pitch? I cant imagine the count would double in a few hours though. Why would they claim that right on the package...?
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Old 02-02-2013, 02:34 AM   #14
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There is a lot of discussion here about wyeast and white labs saying that but they also say to pitch in 70-75* wort and keep it there until fermentation starts-- which is pretty warm so your wort is the starter. They don't want to scare away a purchase. The fine print says use a starter if it is old or you want a faster start (ie no need for the yeast to replicate numbers in the warm wort).
and no the WY nutrient pack is not a starter; it is just a viability test.

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Old 02-02-2013, 02:25 PM   #15
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Instead of a 3 pack starter just do a multi stage step up starting with one pack.

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Old 02-03-2013, 10:42 PM   #16
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Instead of a 3 pack starter just do a multi stage step up starting with one pack.
That would be a great way to save money, but too late. Due to time constraints i just did a single step with 3 packs. I think next time for sure i will try a step starter.
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