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Old 05-03-2010, 12:35 AM   #1
Aug 2009
North Georgia
Posts: 430
Liked 7 Times on 6 Posts

Hi all. I brewed a Belgian Strong Ale a couple of months ago and washed my yeast. I was so proud of my accomplishment until I found out that at 8+% ABV, it is not recommended to repitch my yeast.

I just finished racking a Pale Ale which came in at just under 7% ABV. I have the ingredients to do an IPA. I went ahead and bought yeast but thought again about washing my yeast. I was just thinking. How high, ABV, is too high to wash and repitch yeast?

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Old 05-03-2010, 01:19 AM   #2
Aug 2009
Atwater, OH
Posts: 4,317
Liked 56 Times on 53 Posts

Just make a starter a couple of days in advance and you'll be fine. Yeast are pretty resilient.
Originally Posted by Revvy View Post
And I'd like to see my 1.080 beers ready from grain to glass in a week, and served to me by red-headed twin penthouse pets wearing garter belts and fishnet stockings, with Irish accents, calling me "master luv gun," but we can't always get what we want can we? :)

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Old 05-03-2010, 01:06 PM   #3
Aug 2009
Charlottesville, VA
Posts: 2,174
Liked 44 Times on 40 Posts

Jamil says over 5% and you're pushing it... I like to save the yeast from a smaller beer (like a pale ale, brown ale, irish red), rinse it, and divide into about 4 containers. Then I build starters for my beers from these smaller cultures, sometimes having to step them up. When I get to the last container, I make a smaller beer again to restock.

You'll probably get people who will say, "Your beer will be fine if you use the 7% yeast," and you're right - I'm sure you'll make beer from it. But will it be as good as it could? That's the reasoning I use EVERY time I'm tempted to do something lazy in brewing, like not making a starter or pitching onto a yeast cake. I mean, we put so much time, effort, and money into crafting a perfect recipe with just the right balance of this and that malt and hops. And then we think it's okay to get lazy with the most important ingredient?

You can practically throw any balance of malt and hops in a beer and it'll turn out fine so long as you take excellent care of your yeast. So pitch that new packet of yeast and make yourself a small beer for rinsing/storing!

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Old 05-03-2010, 01:46 PM   #4
petep1980's Avatar
Nov 2008
Posts: 1,905
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At $7 a smack pack you'll be "fine enough".

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