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Old 10-10-2008, 03:46 PM   #1
OGreuelRules
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Default Yeast starter questions...

Ok, so I'm looking to brew a Belgian Strong Golden Ale this weekend, and I've made a yeast starter from my Wyeast Strong Ale activator. I did some calculations on Mr Malty to determine that in order achieve the cell count I need to handle my planned OG of 1.090 I needed to make about 2 gallons of starter. I used 1 lb of Extra Light DME (probably not enough) in 2 gallons of water, pitched my yeast - plenty of action going on. This is my first starter, and here's my dilemma - when the primary fermentation is completed with the mini-wort & the original yeast, what should I pitch to my final wort on brew day? I've read that I could pitch the whole bunch, in which case I should only brew a 3 gallon wort (planning a 5 gallon batch), correct? I've also read that I should decant the "beer" out of the carboy & pitch the remaining yeast. Is this not just trub? I want to make sure I'm getting good yeast out of this and not just waste material. Any info would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks!
Michael

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Old 10-10-2008, 03:51 PM   #2
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2 gallons? That's not a starter but a batch of beer. Just bottle that and you're done.

The recommended pitching rate for a 1.090 ale is 285-340 billion cells so if you start with a wyeast activator pack that has 100 billion cells you'd need to make a 4 qt starter to get around 305 billion cells. So for 4 qts water I'd add 1 1/3 cup dme. But really you could just do a 3 qt starter with 1 c dme and that would be fine.

Since you already made the starter I'd crash cool it overnight and pour off most of the beer and try to pitch only the yeast.

BTW check out John Palmer's book his charts on yeast counts and pitching rates are a great resource.

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Old 10-10-2008, 03:53 PM   #3
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Hoooookay, well what's done is done - any reason I can't cultivate any yeast from this batch?

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Since you already made the starter I'd crash cool it overnight and pour off most of the beer and try to pitch only the yeast.
So I don't need to worry about any waste at the bottom - just pitch the lot?
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Old 10-10-2008, 04:59 PM   #4
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No, the stuff at the bottom is the yeast. You want to put that in the beer and decant off the beer on top of it. With such a big starter you don't need all that extra 'beer'.

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Old 10-13-2008, 02:20 PM   #5
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Thanks for all the info - I brewed yesterday & saw plenty of action in the fermentor no more than 1.5 hrs after pitching my starter. First time I've reaped the rewards of using a blowoff tube...thank god. Looks good so far!

-Michael

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