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Old 02-23-2013, 07:23 PM   #1
jimmarshall
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Default Keep warm to start fermentation?

Ive read before on the instructions with my kit that I need to have my wort at like 75-78 degrees when I pitch, and then move it to a cooler area when fermentation starts.... Any truth to this?

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Old 02-23-2013, 08:52 PM   #2
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75-78 is pretty high to pitch. You're likely to get some major off flavors. Of course it depends on your type of yeast too. I usually pitch my yeast at about 64-67 and leave it there if you can. Happy brewing!

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Old 02-23-2013, 08:55 PM   #3
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It really depends on the yeast. Some strains ferment at higher temps than others. Look up the strain of yeast online and see what it's preferred range is. Start the batch somewhere near the mid-range--unless you have a special need for pushing the yeast to either extreme.

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Old 02-23-2013, 08:58 PM   #4
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That instruction is a carryover from the "old days," (read: 20-30 years ago) when the quality of the yeast was poorer than what we have today. As Sleephla says, you're better of pitching in the mid 60's or lower. A warm initial temperature means increased ester production. Pitching cooler (and keeping your fermentation temperature lower for at least the first day or two, if you can) will give you a cleaner tasting beer.

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Old 02-23-2013, 11:38 PM   #5
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So why does it say to rehydrate dry yeast in 90-100 degree water? Won't that have the same effect as pitching warm?

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Old 02-23-2013, 11:46 PM   #6
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In the first phase of yeast your not likley to create off flavors. About 6-8 hours in you should be fine to have it that warm. After it starts eating the sugars, the second phase of the yeast, is when your gonna create the off flavors.

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Old 02-24-2013, 01:31 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by mechanicalBRew View Post
So why does it say to rehydrate dry yeast in 90-100 degree water? Won't that have the same effect as pitching warm?
When you rehydrate yeast, all you are doing is waking it up, and it is not for very long. Yeast prefer temps around 95 F, unfortunately, when fermenting at that temperature, it produces some undesirable flavors.

I think the jury is still out as to whether it is best to pitch yeast at a high temperature and bring it down to fermentation temperature within a few hours (this helps get the yeast going), or to pitch low and bring the temp up to fermentation temps (this reduces esters created by the yeast).

Personally, I don't pay much attention to it. I make sure I am below 75 F (today I pitched at 66 F) and have the brew in a water bath to get it to the right temperature within a few hours.
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Old 02-24-2013, 02:15 AM   #8
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So why does it say to rehydrate dry yeast in 90-100 degree water? Won't that have the same effect as pitching warm?
Nope. Yeast rehydration done in sterilized (boiled then chilled to 95-100*F) water (tap or spring, not distilled) allows the yeast to re-establish normal cell membrane functions in a friendly (and fairly neutral pH) environment.

Early in the rehydration process the yeast can't tell the difference between good & bad substances, so pitching it dry into wort, even at the right temp, causes a lower percentage of cells to survive in good health.

Pitching dry into too warm wort = kill even more cells, damage some of the others and may cause the production of off-flavors.

I like to pitch rehydrated ale yeast at 65-66*F.
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Old 02-24-2013, 02:29 AM   #9
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It's Safale us-05. Ended up pitching @ 63 degrees. First batch fermented way too hot, worried about off favors... Decided not to take that chance here.

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Old 02-24-2013, 05:17 AM   #10
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We pitch at 65*-68*

Seems to work great, vigorous fermentations, clear beer with no off flavors....

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