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Old 09-22-2009, 10:13 PM   #1
Nugent
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Default Your fav yeast for British pale ale

I know that I am spreading my inquiries wide across a number of sections of the forum, but thought I give this section a try. Many of you have chimed in and have been extremely helpful with my thread in the recipes section.

My question for the yeasty part of your brain is which yeast do you swear by for a British pale ale, and more importantly, why? Have you tried a number of different ones and always go back to your old standard, or do you chop and change depending on your grist bill and hop schedule?

Any opinions and comments will be appreciated. I will provide any feedback as I try out some different yeasts. FYI: I can get Wyeast and Danstar at my LHBS; no WL or Safale unfortunately, but would try and source them if they are mandatory for a try.

Thanks, HBTers. I'm always impressed with the collective knowledge and willingness to help in this forum.

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Old 09-22-2009, 10:33 PM   #2
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WLP023 Burton - In my opinion, the best yeast for british beers, its fruitiness complements the beer so well. Once you try it, you'll wonder why you waited so long.

edit: just reread your post, although I've never tried it, Wyeast 1275 Thames Valley ale might also be the same. Mrmalty lists those 2 as coming from the same source, although I am sure they have diverged some in the intervening years.

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Old 09-22-2009, 10:40 PM   #3
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Thames Valley is a workhorse strain - with lots of wonderful English character. It really accentuates the malt and there's a soft complimentary fruitiness.

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Old 09-23-2009, 01:14 PM   #4
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Which strain to choose depends on what you want out of it. Each English ale strain is fairly unique, and each interacts with other ingredients - grist and hops - in a different way.

Me, I like Ringwood, though I might very well be the only brewer on HBT who does! It's a challenging yeast to manage, but if you can manage it it's completely unique. In fact, if you prefer Yorkshire ales, it's about the only widely-available yeast that will give the crucial characteristics thereof.

Bob

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Old 09-23-2009, 01:19 PM   #5
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WLP "British ale" is a new favorite of mine. The taste is extremely "british".
I also like WLP London Ale because of the more complex flavors.

Thames Valley had a strange odor-like off-flavour I didn't like.

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Old 09-23-2009, 01:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NQ3X View Post
Me, I like Ringwood, though I might very well be the only brewer on HBT who does! It's a challenging yeast to manage, but if you can manage it it's completely unique. In fact, if you prefer Yorkshire ales, it's about the only widely-available yeast that will give the crucial characteristics thereof.
I like Ringwood as well! I've a series of bitters planned for Ringwood, as a matter of fact.
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Old 09-23-2009, 01:32 PM   #7
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I still like good old Wyeast 1968 -- superfloc yeast strain!

Very consistent yeast strain and great if you keg.

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Old 09-23-2009, 02:14 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NQ3X View Post

Me, I like Ringwood, though I might very well be the only brewer on HBT who does! It's a challenging yeast to manage, but if you can manage it it's completely unique.

Bob
I read somewhere that if you manage it properly you never need to buy yeast again. There's a brewpub in toronto that uses it and they've been repitching it for over five years. The Ringwood brewery has been repitching it for longer 20+ I think.

Yorkshire ales are lovely, you just have to ask them to take the sparkler off when they serve.

I'm researching for a switch to open fermentation.
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Old 09-23-2009, 03:27 PM   #9
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Several of the breweries in which I worked professionally were Ringwood breweries. I learned a lot about it during that time.

But I can't say as I'd repitch it out beyond a dozen generations without reculturing. In my experience, after ten to twelve generations weird things start happening in terms of flocculation and ester development. Most breweries who report using the same yeast for decades have sophisticated laboratories which constantly monitor the house strain. It's not so simple as just repitching, I'm afraid.

Open fermentation isn't the bugbear many people think. It requires meticulous attention to cleanliness and sanitation, as well as attention to the state of the ferment. Unlike carboys, it's not a "pitch and wait two weeks" method of fermentation; once the krauesen falls, you really need to get it sealed away.

Ringwood, further, doesn't require open fermentation, though it doesn't like back pressure. I've used it with great success in cylindro-conical vessels. It is better suited to open fermentation because it's far easier to rouse an open vessel than a conical in order to get those last few degrees Plato to full attenuation.

Bob

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Old 09-24-2009, 02:39 PM   #10
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I used wyeast 1098 for a British Bitter and it came it underwhelmingly fruity. It STUNK fruity out of the fermenter, but the fruitiness did not make it into the finish product. Just an FYI. I feel like it missed the target style for that fact.

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