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Old 02-05-2014, 05:10 AM   #1
TheLastRebel195
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Default Substitute For Chinese Yeast Balls?

Hey there.

Im interested in making my first batch of Sake, i have 99% of the ingredients needed, the only thing i am missing are these elusive "Chinese Yeast Balls".

I have looked everywhere, and i mean everywhere, from the major stores to little east Asian groceries, i cannot find them anywhere.

So my question is, what can i use to substitute them?

Would say a dry wine yeast do the trick?

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Old 02-05-2014, 11:14 AM   #2
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No. You need something to break the starches into sugar. This is called saccharification (sp?). There is also mold in the yeast balls that accomplishes this. Theoretically, you could use another type of mold and wine yeast, but that's tricky. Also, the yeast in those balls is very alcohol tolerant, which makes for strong stuff.

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Old 02-05-2014, 11:17 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLastRebel195 View Post
Hey there.

Im interested in making my first batch of Sake, i have 99% of the ingredients needed, the only thing i am missing are these elusive "Chinese Yeast Balls".

I have looked everywhere, and i mean everywhere, from the major stores to little east Asian groceries, i cannot find them anywhere.

So my question is, what can i use to substitute them?

Would say a dry wine yeast do the trick?
I ordered mine over the internet, and had them in a few days.
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Old 02-05-2014, 01:34 PM   #4
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One of the guys on this thread, jak1010, is also on eBay and he usually sells the yeast balls, ryr, and angel leaven. He uses the same handle on ebay as he does here, people have given good reviews.

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Old 02-05-2014, 05:46 PM   #5
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So you the majority of you agree that dry wine yeast couldn't be used in this mix?

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Old 02-05-2014, 11:07 PM   #6
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Well you could go more the Japanese Sake route rather than the chines rice wine way you are trying now.

But that requires you go back out to the oriental markets and look for some Koji. Cold mountain Koji is the most popular brand I know of. It is easiest to look for it in the isle where they sell Miso since it is used to make that too.

Koji is just rice with aspergillus oryzae grown on it usually. That breaks down your steamed rice and allows you to add your dry wine yeast. My favorite dry yeast to use is Lalvin K1v-1116.

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Old 02-06-2014, 06:06 AM   #7
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Koji is also a mold, which is necessary to break down the starch in rice into sugars that yeast can ferment. Wine and beer yeast can only ferment sugars. In brewing beer enzymes in the barley break down the starch into sugars during mashing. Mold accomplishes the mashing in making sake and other rice wines. Search most Chinese markets, and many other nationality markets and you will find it. Ask someone there if necessary, just say you are making rice wine and need yeast balls or Jiu Qiu. Where are you located? Ordering online is always an option too as noted above.

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Old 02-06-2014, 10:05 AM   #8
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Koji is also a mold, which is necessary to break down the starch in rice into sugars that yeast can ferment. Wine and beer yeast can only ferment sugars. In brewing beer enzymes in the barley break down the starch into sugars during mashing. Mold accomplishes the mashing in making sake and other rice wines. Search most Chinese markets, and many other nationality markets and you will find it. Ask someone there if necessary, just say you are making rice wine and need yeast balls or Jiu Qiu. Where are you located? Ordering online is always an option too as noted above.
Im located in Ontario, Canada, i am aware of ONTO yeast and have tried ordering online from them, but they would not accept my prepaid credit card, so i went ahead and ordered dry wine yeast from another online store
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Old 02-07-2014, 03:04 AM   #9
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you can also purchase them online through ontoyeast.com.

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Old 02-07-2014, 03:34 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdxal View Post
Koji is also a mold, which is necessary to break down the starch in rice into sugars that yeast can ferment. Wine and beer yeast can only ferment sugars. In brewing beer enzymes in the barley break down the starch into sugars during mashing. Mold accomplishes the mashing in making sake and other rice wines. Search most Chinese markets, and many other nationality markets and you will find it. Ask someone there if necessary, just say you are making rice wine and need yeast balls or Jiu Qiu. Where are you located? Ordering online is always an option too as noted above.
If enzymes in barley break down the starches into sugars could those same enzymes in barley be used to break down the starches in rice?
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