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Old 07-13-2005, 11:55 PM   #1
Dark_Ale
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Default Liquid Smack Pack

I am brewing a all grain 5 gallon batch of an English Pale ale. I have always used dry yeast but heard that the liquid smack packs were better. Anyway, I am torn between making a starter or not I have never used liquid yeast. The guy at the brew shop says I dont need a starter but I have read that I should make a starter. On previous brews the dry yeast gives me pretty rapid fermentation withen a few hours. I guess I just need to know what to expect
first question do you think I should make a starter?
second' If you make a starter I read you should add it while its fermenting rapidly, but it says that some put the starter in the ice box to settle the yeast then pour some of the liquid off and add the slurry.
I know its just beer...LOL anyway just trying to get a little better with my process. Thanks for the help.



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Old 07-14-2005, 04:51 AM   #2
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You don't have to pitch a starter.....the activator packs will do the job. But, the general concensus is that the yeast will do the job better with a starter.

Just mix 3/4 cup DME with 2 cups of water (or double that, as most recommend), and boil for 5-10 min. Cool to <80F, and pitch your yeast. I use gallon milk-type jugs.....cut a small slit in the cap, and stick an airlock in there. Everything sanitized, of course.

It should make kreautsen......even if it doesn't, you'll be able to see that the yeast propogated in the bottom of the jug. Make one up 2-3 days before brewing, and you'll be fine!

BTW...I can't take credit for discovering the above info....ORRELSE taught me all that.



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Old 07-14-2005, 05:09 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam75
You don't have to pitch a starter.....the activator packs will do the job. But, the general concensus is that the yeast will do the job better with a starter.

Just mix 3/4 cup DME with 2 cups of water (or double that, as most recommend), and boil for 5-10 min. Cool to <80F, and pitch your yeast. I use gallon milk-type jugs.....cut a small slit in the cap, and stick an airlock in there. Everything sanitized, of course.

It should make kreautsen......even if it doesn't, you'll be able to see that the yeast propogated in the bottom of the jug. Make one up 2-3 days before brewing, and you'll be fine!

BTW...I can't take credit for discovering the above info....ORRELSE taught me all that.
So once I pour my starter into my primary, pour all of the starter in right, liquid and all?
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Old 07-14-2005, 03:47 PM   #4
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I posted this in another section, but saw this thread and thought I'd re-post to try and get an answer before tomorrow morning:

My question:

I'm planning to brew Friday around 2:45pm (Summer hours on friday!) Should I take my smack pack out of the fridge before I leave the house at 7:15am? If I am to take it out, should I "smack" it before i go? Should i just wait until I get home, take it out and smack it at room temp?

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Old 07-14-2005, 07:49 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark_Ale
So once I pour my starter into my primary, pour all of the starter in right, liquid and all?
Yep!

Quote:
Originally Posted by attym
I'm planning to brew Friday around 2:45pm (Summer hours on friday!) Should I take my smack pack out of the fridge before I leave the house at 7:15am? If I am to take it out, should I "smack" it before i go? Should i just wait until I get home, take it out and smack it at room temp?
Let it warm to room temp and smack before you go to work. Really, you'd be OK to do this a couple hours before you brew, but it'll for sure be ready by the time you get home. You've really got to beat the crap out of them to burst the inner pack. I lay mine on the counter to do it. Even then, I've had a couple that didn't burst. Another reason I just use a starter.

Best of luck!
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Old 07-15-2005, 08:29 PM   #6
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there are several way's to skin a starter! :~)

the smack pack will work fine by itself, and taste a whole helluva lot better than the dried yeast.

just follow the directions on the back of the Wyeast packet. works every time....

24 hours before i brew, i use make a 1300 ml starter in a Pyrex flask. i warm 1300 ml water in a stainless pot, add 1 cup light dried malt extract, stir to disolve. bring to a gentle boil for 15 min. remove from heat, cover lid tightly with foil, and put in an ice bath in the sink. when it cools to the touch, remove foil cap, pitch packet/vial of yeast and cover whith a cleaned and sanitized air lock. you'll see activity within a couple hours. you can get several types of directions of www.whitelabs.com and www.wyeast.com. they all vary a little, but i'm sure the results are the same (depending on the size of the starter). higher gravity beers and lagers need a larger starter (2 qt).

i pitched my starter into my Irish red ale saturday @ 3:45, and had activity at 5:00. when i used vials of yeast, it woulkd take 15-24 hours to see any activity. mo bedda for the beer.

good luck!

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Old 07-18-2005, 04:02 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeRoux's Broux
there are several way's to skin a starter! :~)

the smack pack will work fine by itself, and taste a whole helluva lot better than the dried yeast.

just follow the directions on the back of the Wyeast packet. works every time....

24 hours before i brew, i use make a 1300 ml starter in a Pyrex flask. i warm 1300 ml water in a stainless pot, add 1 cup light dried malt extract, stir to disolve. bring to a gentle boil for 15 min. remove from heat, cover lid tightly with foil, and put in an ice bath in the sink. when it cools to the touch, remove foil cap, pitch packet/vial of yeast and cover whith a cleaned and sanitized air lock. you'll see activity within a couple hours. you can get several types of directions of www.whitelabs.com and www.wyeast.com. they all vary a little, but i'm sure the results are the same (depending on the size of the starter). higher gravity beers and lagers need a larger starter (2 qt).

i pitched my starter into my Irish red ale saturday @ 3:45, and had activity at 5:00. when i used vials of yeast, it woulkd take 15-24 hours to see any activity. mo bedda for the beer.

good luck!
Ok made starter Saturday morning, I never seen much activity, but I could see a nice thick layer of yeast in the bottom. I shook it up good sunday afternoon, and pitched withen an 1hr my airlock was singing
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Old 07-18-2005, 04:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeRoux's Broux
there are several way's to skin a starter! :~)

the smack pack will work fine by itself, and taste a whole helluva lot better than the dried yeast.

just follow the directions on the back of the Wyeast packet. works every time....

24 hours before i brew, i use make a 1300 ml starter in a Pyrex flask. i warm 1300 ml water in a stainless pot, add 1 cup light dried malt extract, stir to disolve. bring to a gentle boil for 15 min. remove from heat, cover lid tightly with foil, and put in an ice bath in the sink. when it cools to the touch, remove foil cap, pitch packet/vial of yeast and cover whith a cleaned and sanitized air lock. you'll see activity within a couple hours. you can get several types of directions of www.whitelabs.com and www.wyeast.com. they all vary a little, but i'm sure the results are the same (depending on the size of the starter). higher gravity beers and lagers need a larger starter (2 qt).

i pitched my starter into my Irish red ale saturday @ 3:45, and had activity at 5:00. when i used vials of yeast, it woulkd take 15-24 hours to see any activity. mo bedda for the beer.

good luck!

If you are using a pyrex erlenmeyer flask you can boil the water right in the flask. Most of those flasks are made to be autoclaved (120 degrees C).
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Old 07-18-2005, 04:43 PM   #9
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cool stuff hu? nice to have the ferment start so quick. it'll really improve your brews. you'll be glad you did it......
keep us posted.

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Old 07-18-2005, 04:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cygnus128
If you are using a pyrex erlenmeyer flask you can boil the water right in the flask. Most of those flasks are made to be autoclaved (120 degrees C).
have you ever done it like that? it's a mess. to try and to add the DME into that small flask opening, that crap get's every where . the steam from inside the flask makes all the DME cake to the inside wall and lip of the flask (plus the measuring cup!). half ends up on the stove top or stuck to the the flask. it's just easier to use a stainless pot, then use a funnel to get it into the flask. i learned after the first time
plus, when you add DME to BOILING WATER = major boil-over and stove top mess.......i learned that too!


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