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Old 03-21-2009, 01:44 AM   #1
LSDracula
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Default what makes a good starter?

Ok so I am making a dark stout extract/steeping grain recipe tomorrow. I used brew calculus and the recipe came out to 1.070. Obviously I made a starter: 1.5 quarts
According to a starter calculator I found I should be under pitching, but not by much.

I have used a stepped method in making the starter. I used a pint of water to 1/2 cup DME 3 times. Meaning I started with a pint starter and stepped it up to 1.5 quarts in the period of 4 days.

The problem is that I followed the process described in John Palmers book and on the BrewWiki starter article that said to use 16oz or a pint of water for every 1/2 cup of DME. In Palmers book it says this starter wort should be 1.040 per the recipe but according to brew calculus it is 1.080.

In a different thread I read that a high starter gravity can strain the yeast. Granted the yeast numbers will be higher but they will be stressed.

The beer I'm making is pretty big 1.070, but I read starting yeast in starter wort that high of gravity is no good.
I would think it would get the yeast ready for what is coming, but IDK I'm not a biochemist

I am brewing tomorrow regardless but for future reference I would like some input since I love heavy, stout, dark, high gravity beer...

I want HBT advice what is better?

#1 Making the entire starter volume at first or stepping the volume like I did?

#2 What should the OG for starter wort be? Close to what you are pitching into or 1.040

+ I plan on decanting the starter I made. So, does that mean I just put it in the fridge tonight and pour off most of the liquid, shake, and then pitch or should I pour off the liquid and then fill with cool/warm water and shake I don't really get it. This is my first starter!

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Old 03-21-2009, 01:54 AM   #2
ArcaneXor
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Originally Posted by LSDracula View Post
#1 Making the entire starter volume at first or stepping the volume like I did?

The entire volume, unless you are reculturing washed or slanted yeast, or you are using a vial that is several years old and has minimal viability

#2 What should the OG for starter wort be? Close to what you are pitching into or 1.040

Between 1.03 and 1.04

+ I plan on decanting the starter I made. So, does that mean I just put it in the fridge tonight and pour off most of the liquid, shake, and then pitch or should I pour off the liquid and then fill with cool/warm water and shake I don't really get it. This is my first starter!

The first method you describe is the correct one. Decant as much of the wort as feasible, swirl it up and pitch. Adding water will do nothing but dilute your beer unnecessarily
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