Culturing up Sweetwater 420 Pale Ale yeast

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rtstrider

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Hey all! I purchased a single bottle of Sweetwater 420 pale ale a few weeks ago, popped it in the kegerator, and forgot about it. When I picked up the bottle it appeared there was a very heavy slurry on the bottom. I figured what the hey why not read the bottle and see if it was bottle conditioned. Low and behold it was! So next thought was hey why not try culturing it up to see if it’s the fermentation strain or a bottling strain? I made up a 150ml batch of 1.020 starter wort and poured the bottle dredges in there. That was Thursday evening. 2 days later and it’s fully krausened! I may brew a plain blonde ale and ferment in the mid 60s to get a feel for the yeast. It’s definitely very fruity smelling. I have a hunch it’s a dry English variety. Has anyone else had luck culturing up this strain?
 

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rtstrider

rtstrider

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Sweet! Let us know how it turns out.

I've read bottling yeast is not always the same yeast that was used in primary. IDK about the Sweetwater 420 brew.

Yeah I wrote Sweetwater on Facebook but haven't heard back yet. Some breweries a VERY tight lipped about that kind of thing where others are very open :) I'm going to cold crash/decant when this has fermented out then pitch it into 1 liter 1.020, throw on the stir plate, and give it a taste once it's done fermenting. It'll be a few months before I can really use this strain. If it's promising from the starter though I'll get it built up to 2 liter 1.040, let that ferment out, then bank it up and freeze it for later use
 

Stormcrow

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Yeah I wrote Sweetwater on Facebook but haven't heard back yet. Some breweries a VERY tight lipped about that kind of thing where others are very open :) I'm going to cold crash/decant when this has fermented out then pitch it into 1 liter 1.020, throw on the stir plate, and give it a taste once it's done fermenting. It'll be a few months before I can really use this strain. If it's promising from the starter though I'll get it built up to 2 liter 1.040, let that ferment out, then bank it up and freeze it for later use
You're an inspiration. I always talk about doing these things, but.... Can't wait to hear how it turns out.
 
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rtstrider

rtstrider

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Makes me think of the Spotted Cow beer with sediment in the bottom of the bottle. Maybe, just maybe...

I've heard they pasteurize the beer unfortunately. From reading through these forums it sounds like they may have originally used Wyeast 2565 and now use a proprietary strain that's banked offsite. I've never personally had spotted cow though so I can't speak too much about it
 
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rtstrider

rtstrider

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The 150ml 1.020 starter fermented out and is very dry and clean. Exactly what I’d expect here. Moving this up to a 1 liter 1.020 starter on the stir plate. Getting the starter wort ready for boil :)
 
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rtstrider

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The starter is finished fermenting at 1L 1.020 so tonight it gets bumped up to 2L 1.040. I already have a nice classic pale ale recipe designed for this yeast once it's stepped up from frozen test tubes. It's going to probably have to wait till closer to the end of the year but it's definitely happening. Going to shoot for a ferment temp of 64F since I don't know what I'm working with.
 

VikeMan

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I can't say whether Sweetwater bottle conditions 420 using the fermentation strain, but they do add yeast at bottling time, which might tend to point away from it being the same.
 
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rtstrider

rtstrider

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I can't say whether Sweetwater bottle conditions 420 using the fermentation strain, but they do add yeast at bottling time, which might tend to point away from it being the same.

I just got off the phone with Sweetwater and they said that's definitely a bottling strain and not the fermentation strain. Live and learn lol
 
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rtstrider

rtstrider

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Sorry, I meant to type any indication of the type of wyeast Sweetwater uses for bottling?

You know I'm not entirely sure. Knowing what I know now I may just separate this into 2 quart jars and just see what happens. Once my brews are caught up I may just give this a go with a light ale smash for giggles. No promises though lol
 

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