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Old 05-19-2010, 05:56 PM   #1
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Sep 2009
Linden, NJ
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Hey guys I have about 3/4 cup of slurry in a jar with some beer that's been in my fridge that's been there for like 4 months and was thinking of using it for my next batch. It looks healthy looking at it. What do you think? Would you use it for your next batch?

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Old 05-19-2010, 05:59 PM   #2
Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
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Dec 2007
"Detroitish" Michigan
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Bobby M recently did a test on year old stored yeast here; http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f13/test...bility-126707/

And my LHBS cells outdated tubes and packs of yeast dirt cheap 2-3 dollars each and I usually grab a couple tubes of belgian or other interesting yeast when I am there and shove it in my fridge. and I have never had a problem with one of those tubes.

I usually make a starter but I once pitched a year old tube of Belgian High Gravity yeast directly into a 2.5 gallon batch of a Belgian Dark Strong, and after about 4 days it took off beautifully.

Same with jarred yeast.

With any stored, old yeast you just need first to apply the "sniff test" if it smell bad, especially if it smells like week old gorilla poop in a diaper left on the side of the road in the heat of summer.

Then make a starter, and if it takes off you are fine. The purpose of a starter is to reproduce any viable cells in a batch of yeast....that;s how we can grow a starter form the dregs in a bottle of beer incrementally...and that beer may be months old.

Even if you have a few still living cells, you can grow them....That's how we can harvest a huge starter (incrementally) from the dregs in a bottle of some commercial beers. You take those few living cells and grow them into more.

If yeast can be grown from a tiny amount that has been encased in amber for 45 million years, 45 million year old yeast ferments amber ale we really don't need to sweat too much about yeast viability....

we just need to think in terms of making starters. Viability isn't really an issue if you are reproducing a lot of healthy cells. Which is what you are doing when you make a starter.....
Really even with "old yeast" if there is a few cells, they will reproduce.

There's nothing wrong with using old yeast at all...and as for cheap, even dry yeast has gone up in price this year. I used to by US-05 for $1.89 as far back as a year ago, now it is over three bucks.
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Old 05-22-2010, 06:10 AM   #3
Jul 2008
Los Angeles
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I've been able to take yeast out of old jars (6 mos +) and get fermentation every time. I used to just drop it straight into the bucket and wait. Now I do everything via a starter in a PET bottle first just so I can be sure the yeast hasn't picked up any "oddness" before pitching into a fresh batch.
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Old 05-22-2010, 06:42 AM   #4
Aug 2009
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I recently pitched a starter of 1056 that I washed in January. It took off quickly in the starter and just as quickly in the carboy.

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