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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Underpitched = off flavours?
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Old 02-22-2014, 05:34 AM   #1
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Default Underpitched = off flavours?

So I recently brewed an ESB and pitched with Wyeast 1968 ESB yeast, I know that its a bit of a difficult yeast (and beer) to get just right but I way overshot my OG and that gave me a way undersized yeast starter. I'm not a yeast expert so I'm just wondering what effects under pitching will have, I think I might be under by as much as 62 billion cells (using Beersmith calc). I did get good fermentation, went from 1.07 to 1.02 but the beer tastes like ****, basically just good for getting drunk and probably hungover. I did a diacetyl rest and had fermentation temps in the proper range also.

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Old 02-22-2014, 06:00 AM   #2
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I've never used that particular yeast, but with underpitching you can get more esters being produced. Banana, stone fruit, horse rectum, etc. Those usually aren't desirable. It may also be why you finished at 1.020, but obviously I don't know your recipe.

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Old 02-22-2014, 06:01 AM   #3
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Underpitching is a definite cause of many different off flavors as you are stressing the yeast when you do that. Consistent fermentation temp is another very important thing.

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Old 02-23-2014, 02:20 AM   #4
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What flavors are you getting? I'm having some problems with that yeast and I have few batches going. It made this weird tart/acid/cidery flavor in the bottles that it for sure didn't have when I bottled it.

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Old 02-23-2014, 03:18 AM   #5
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1968 is a great yeast but finicky.

It likes to be pitched slightly cold and allowed to rise, I like to ferment it at 62-64, but as it slows it needs to be roused and warmed a few more degrees to finish.

It is highly flocculant so without the warm up it tends to drop earlier. The beer clears extremely well and leaves a very slight fruity element compared to a clean ale yeast.

Btw, 1.070 is kind of high for an ESB, was this an all grain batch?


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Old 02-23-2014, 07:17 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duboman View Post
1968 is a great yeast but finicky.

It likes to be pitched slightly cold and allowed to rise, I like to ferment it at 62-64, but as it slows it needs to be roused and warmed a few more degrees to finish.

It is highly flocculant so without the warm up it tends to drop earlier. The beer clears extremely well and leaves a very slight fruity element compared to a clean ale yeast.

Btw, 1.070 is kind of high for an ESB, was this an all grain batch?


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How do you package the beers you use this yeast in?
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Old 02-23-2014, 04:02 PM   #7
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I have kegged it and bottled it successfully just like any other strain of yeast, not exactly sure what your concern would be with packaging?


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Old 02-23-2014, 06:55 PM   #8
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What temp did you ferment at?

WY1968 as other have said is finnicky and can drop out if you have temp swings. Try and keep ferm temp stable and below 70F. I would often give it a gentle stir myself near the end as it tends to floc out.

It also doesn't attenuate very low so when I use it I mash low (ex: 148F when making a Fullers ESB clone). Because of the low attenuation you have to be careful with your grain bill - not to introduce too many sugars that can't ferment with (for example) crystal malts.

What was your recipe? Looking at my notes I tend to get about 73-75% attenuation with WY1968 with the few recipes I've done. If you start at 1.070 and finished at 1.020. that's 71.4% attenuation which is in the range that Wyeast actually states: 67-71%

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Old 02-23-2014, 07:35 PM   #9
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WY1968 is the only yeast I use, and since I have kept a tight control on the fermentation temperature, I get predictable results. I start all of my beers at 62* F, and usually will hold 62* F for two weeks, then take a gravity sample to see where it is just for comparison, and slowly raise the temperature up to 70* F over the course of two or so weeks. Since I ferment "cold", I don't worry about needing a D-rest. This the same procedure I always use, and recently won a Best of Category Stouts and Porters. It ain't broke, and I ain't gonna "fix" it either,.

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Old 02-23-2014, 07:57 PM   #10
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MindenMan: Yours is not that different from my fermentation schedule with WY1968 - I start just a tad higher (64-66F) and then rise slowly to 68-70F and hold for a week or so once I'm a few points from terminal gravity. Like you said, if it ain't broke, don't fix it!

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