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Old 06-10-2007, 06:43 PM   #1
fritz_monroe
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Default Harvesting yeast question

I've read a couple of the threads around about how to harvest yeast from a batch of beer. But I don't quite understand why you would want to harvest yeast.

I guess if you managed to get your hands on your favorite brew's propriatary yeast, but most of the threads talk about typical brewing yeast.

So, why would I want to go through harvesting and washing the yeast when it's not a special yeast?

Thanks.

<edited for correct wording> (it's not scrubbing.

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Old 06-10-2007, 06:53 PM   #2
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Washing it just means getting it separated from the trub and wort, not "scrubbing" it. It's done as a way to save money, or, as you stated, to keep supplies of your favorite. Liquid yeast is expensive, and if you can make it last 3 or more batches, then you've just brewed for the cost of using dry yeast.

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Old 06-10-2007, 07:02 PM   #3
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Yea, I meant washing. Oops, I'll fix that.

I guess at some point in my career I'll get to harvesting yeast, but for 3 or 4 batches a year...

So do you guys store it away to use at a later batch? Or use the same yeast over and over in consecutive batches?

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Old 06-10-2007, 07:05 PM   #4
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For many people especially those that are all grain and buy bulk, liquid yeast may represent over 30% of the cost of their beer. Reusing yeast like 3-4 times may get you down to $15/5 gal.

I have gotten to the point where I am not buying yeast unless I need the yeast for a specific flavor (hefeweizen, Kolsch, etc.). Otherwise I am just going to use a clean fermenting dry yeast and save $6 for [probably] the same end result.

On top of that, if you have to buy from the internet harvesting yeast lets you have yeast ready to go at any time.

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Old 06-10-2007, 08:29 PM   #5
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Quote:
Otherwise I am just going to use a clean fermenting dry yeast and save $6 for [probably] the same end result.
What do you keep on hand for this? I see Nottingham mentioned all over the place. Would that be the yeast of choice for you? That's what I bought as "back up" yeast to keep on hand.
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Old 06-10-2007, 08:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fritz_monroe
What do you keep on hand for this? I see Nottingham mentioned all over the place. Would that be the yeast of choice for you? That's what I bought as "back up" yeast to keep on hand.
I think most people would recommend Nottingham as a good back-up dry yeast. I plan to use it as my standard ale yeast. Again, moving to liquid if I need something specific.
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Old 06-10-2007, 09:25 PM   #7
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Nottingham is a great clean quick attenutive dry yeast. I've fooled lager beer snobs intothinking they were drinking a lager when I brewed with this yeast at 16C. ( it can be used as low as 14c)

Safale 04 and Safale 05 are great ale yeasts with some frutiness.

Windsor has more fruitiness and isn't all that floculent and danstar mentions that it has been used for hefe's. I'm going to try that to see how it turns out. I do have banana smells coming out of my string dark strong trappist ale, but I have windosor and safbrew 33 both in there.

Which brings me to...

Safbrew 33. Great for trappists. Also much used at lower temps for Kölsch.

And I know a guy here that has a 6 bbl system and uses Saflager 23 for all his lagers now. (for 250 grand he's willing to sell the equipment...)

There is a new dry lager strain available frm fermentis now, anoth saflager, but I can't remember the number. Morebeer.com has it for sale.
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Old 06-10-2007, 11:13 PM   #8
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I took a bomber of Pils to my brew club meeting and it got pretty good reviews. You should have seen the noses go up when I told them I used S23 dry yeast. I suppose I could be naive since I don't have a batch done with a "proper" pils lager liquid yeast, but I think it works well. I also heard of US-05 being a damn good dry yeast for your American ales.

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Old 06-11-2007, 04:14 AM   #9
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I did somethin like this in another thread...I won't do it anymore so someone remember where this is as a reference...thanks...

1 vial of yeast $7.00 - 1 use

Washed - 5 samples.

Each sample used once = 5, plus 5 more samples from each = 25.

So far we have 1 vial used 31 times.

$7.00 divided by 31 = $0.23 each use.

Simple math...

31 X 7 = $217.00

Which would you rather do? Wash yeast or use new each time?

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Old 06-11-2007, 05:00 AM   #10
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Nottingham is my backup also...

Another reason not yet mentioned for harvesting yeast is to pitch alot for a big beer. The process is to brew a regular strength beer and pitch using the yeast you want for your big beer. When fermentation is done you use the yeast from the primary to pitch your big beer. Your first batch is your "starter" - but you get to drink the beer you made!

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