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Old 01-23-2013, 02:22 PM   #1
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Default Don't make yeast starters from dry yeast? WTF?

Just read in "Brewing Classic Styles" by Jamil Zainasheff and John J. Palmer page 285, bottom of page, NOT to make a yeast starter from dry yeast. Claim it is much cheaper to buy more yeast and hydrate. Surely not everyone who makes a yeast starter uses White Labs or Wyeast.

As for cost, Wyeast would have cost me $20 from Northern Brewer, $6 for yeast and $14 shipping.

Can anyone think of a reason NOT to make a starter from dry yeast? The goal is to increase cell count. How does liquid yeast work well for starters but it is better just to pitch re-hydrated dry yeast?

Will send the authors an email and see what John Palmer has to say in his book, "How to Brew."


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Old 01-23-2013, 02:37 PM   #2
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Well i believe there is 200 billion yeast cells oer pack or dry yeast versus 100 billion per liquid, and the cost of dry is about half of liquid. So in most cases one pack of dry is enough yeast.

Most people who make starters do use liquid....either washed yeast from previous batches or a new vial/pack to be stepped up to get the appropriate cell count for the type of beer they are making.

What type of beer are you making, and the OG you are shooting for?


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Old 01-23-2013, 02:42 PM   #3
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Yea half a lb of DME for a starter could cost you a couple bucks. For that you could have just bought a second pack of dry and not had to deal with the boiling, cooling, starting, and waiting for high Krausen to pitch your yeast
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Old 01-23-2013, 02:51 PM   #4
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I always heard it had something to do with the yeast cells being dried. they build the cells up with nutrients they need for rehydrating, and if you make a starter, they use up those nuitrients and then run out before getting to the real beer. I've never fully understood it though.
Also, in the book "Designing Great Beers" the author says for an adequate cell count for an average gravity 5 gallon batch, you need 7 grams of dry yeast, and 9.5 grams for an optimum pitch of cells. Since Danstar and Fermentis yeasts both come with more than 9.5 grams, you shouldn't need a starter unless you are making more than 5 gallons, or are making a high gravity beer.
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Old 01-23-2013, 03:22 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Hogarthe View Post
I always heard it had something to do with the yeast cells being dried. they build the cells up with nutrients they need for rehydrating, and if you make a starter, they use up those nuitrients and then run out before getting to the real beer. I've never fully understood it though.

Ditto. To answer the OP's question, yes, I believe in fact everyone who does starters does it with liquid yeast. Not only is a starter with dry yeast unnecessary, it's actually detrimental, as I understand it.

To make this even more controversial, the latest information suggests that with dry yeasts, you don't even need to aerate the wort. Just rehydrate and pitch.

EDIT: Found it - From the FAQ section on Danstar's website:

Quote:
I always aerate my wort when using liquid yeast. Do I need to aerate the wort before pitching dry yeast?

No, there is no need to aerate the wort but it does not harm the yeast either.
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:10 PM   #6
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Thank you all very much. I use dry yeast as no LHBS carries liquid and it is too expensive to order on-line. Had I not read "Brewing Classic Styles" and posted the dry yeast question, brew day would have involved destroying dry yeast on an expensive stirrer in an expensive flask.

Maybe the monitors can create a sticky not to make yeast starters from dry yeast.
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:17 PM   #7
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the no starter for dry yeast has to do with the wort penetrating the dry yeast cell's membrane. when dry yeast is rehydrated it cannot control the flow of liquid through its cellular membrane. somehow the sugar in the starter wort ends up killing up to 50% of the cells. i guess water, at the right temperature, is the only thing needed to get them going. if i wasn't at work i would run down that thread where i got this information. but i will say, the info was initially posted from a dry yeast labs website...possibly danstar?
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:33 PM   #8
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the no starter for dry yeast has to do with the wort penetrating the dry yeast cell's membrane. when dry yeast is rehydrated it cannot control the flow of liquid through its cellular membrane. somehow the sugar in the starter wort ends up killing up to 50% of the cells. i guess water, at the right temperature, is the only thing needed to get them going. if i wasn't at work i would run down that thread where i got this information. but i will say, the info was initially posted from a dry yeast labs website...possibly danstar?
This is in reference to REHYDRATING dry yeast, not making a starter. Although a good number of cells survive rehydrating in wort, a good number also lose their lives due to stuff getting past their cell walls when they can't regulate it well.

Building a starter isn't necessary for dry yeast due to cell count (usually) and the fact that they are pretty much primed for reproduction already and will do so quickly in wort.

Making a start is recommended for most beer gravities because they contain fewer cells and there is higher likelyhood of a higher portion of those cells being useless. Aeration is necessary because the cells have to also build up their sterols for reproduction. Dry cells have already done this as part of the drying process. They are ready to go.
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:41 PM   #9
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All I have to say is that the ONE beer I have ever made that came out terrible (almost undrinkable!) was one I made with S04 dry yeast that I made a starter for.

Worst idea ever I suppose because this beer had the worst off flavor I have ever tasted and there is no explanation for it other than the yeast handling as all other parts of the process were fine. I ended up giving most of that beer away as I could barely choke one down. :/
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Old 01-23-2013, 07:48 PM   #10
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I ended up giving most of that beer away as I could barely choke one down. :/
You gave away beer you thought was terrible?????


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