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Old 03-10-2008, 10:28 PM   #1
Powchekny
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Default Is it possible to use the yeast sediment at the bottom of a homebrew as a starter?

OK, this question may very well belie my ignorance - so be it

Can one simply pour the accumulated yeast sediment from a bottle of homebrew into a new batch of homebrew as a starter? Would it work at all? Only if the beer was relatively fresh, maybe?

I'm guessing no because nobody seems to do this, but why?

I became curious because the yeast at the bottom of my bottles of homebrew seems so clean.

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Old 03-10-2008, 10:30 PM   #2
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You can do it with bottle conditioned commercial brews so I'd bet you could with a homebrew, but why bother. If you want to reuse yeast, just wash the yeast cake from your primary.

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Old 03-10-2008, 10:30 PM   #3
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I tell you what, I like the idea. Perhaps we could save that last 1/4" + its yeast in a jar in the fridge, and pitch it for your next beer...

+1 on the question.


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Originally Posted by c.n.budz
You can do it with bottle conditioned commercial brews so I'd bet you could with a homebrew, but why bother. If you want to reuse yeast, just wash the yeast cake from your primary.
I guess I should look up how to wash the yeast, but I've been under the impression that it's a little more difficult than just collecting the last 1/4" of each homebrew. I'm going to do something like this soon, so here goes... *searches "yeast washing"*
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Old 03-10-2008, 10:32 PM   #4
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Sure, it can be done. But when you say "pour it into a new batch", I think you're mis-speaking (mis-typing?). You wouldn't pour that tiny amount of yeast straight into the wort and expect it to do much. You'd want to make an actual starter---boil up a small batch of wort several days prior, pitch the bottle yeast, and let the yeast multiply...

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Old 03-10-2008, 10:32 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replies, I may well try it. and .. I swear you guys couldn't answer questions any faster if you were a paid brewing emergency response team

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Old 03-10-2008, 10:32 PM   #6
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Yes is the short answer...

It would be much easier to wash yeast from the carboy.
Take a look at this link...
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthre...=yeast+washing

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Old 03-10-2008, 10:39 PM   #7
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I'd heard "Yeast washing" mentioned before - being new to this, I had no idea what people were referring to. Now I know.

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Old 03-10-2008, 10:40 PM   #8
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That thread about yeast washing is great, it give all the information you'd need.

Using the yeast from a bottle is a bit more difficult. You'd have to increase the volume step by step and there is a better chance of an infection due to bacteria or wild yeast possibly growing much faster that the 'good' yeast. It is possible, but washing and using the yeast from the cake in the primary is definitely much easier and more reliable. (not to mention cheaper, you'd need more flasks/jars/bottles and sanitizing stuff and DME to use from the bottle, and there's a chance that you won't get enough of a population for a good pitch)

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Old 03-10-2008, 11:56 PM   #9
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Here's a pretty good how-to on culturing yeast from bottles.

http://www.byo.com/departments/1361.html

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Old 03-10-2008, 11:59 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Powchekny
brewing emergency response team
B.E.R.T. !!!
I like it!
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