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Danstar London ESB Dry Ale Yeast - Anyone use it yet?

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donovanlambright

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If you keep the wort fermentable, step mashing or mashing long at 62c, you wouldn't need to do that. Also including some simple sugars, for example 10% helps with that. After all, it's an English yeast and wants to be treated as such.

Although, rousing the yeast is actually also part of some traditional British brewing methods.
That's a good thought. The recipe called for mashing at 66.66C and I would be concerned about changing the mouthfeel too much. On the other hand, maybe I'll try that and taste them both side by side. :)

Edited to correct the mash temp--I was looking at the wrong page in my notebook.
 

CPlazas

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First time using this yeast. I've brewed yesterday the Fuller's ESB clone posted on BYO website. Reading this thread I wonder how I'll be able to achieve FG of 1.014.

I've modified my brew to fit my BIAB setup and ended up with and OG of 1.053 (instead of 1.057 as planed). Mashed @ 67 °C as indicated on the website. Bubbling started vigorously after a couple of hours @ 19 °C and it even managed to spill a bit out of the airlock seal. I cleaned it and it's still going.

Now, about the FG, there was nothing on the recipe indicating the usage of simple sugars to achieve a FG lower than 1.020. However some people mentioned that it should lower during secondary at a higher temperature. Should I plan on adding sugars or should I just let it be and raise its temps after a week or so?
 

Franktalk

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You could do either, but, whichever you do, give it lots of time to finish. One of the things about this yeast is that if you give it long enough, it will ferment some more. I always use it in beers with some simple sugars, and I get good attenuation with it.
 

Elric

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First time using this yeast. I've brewed yesterday the Fuller's ESB clone posted on BYO website. Reading this thread I wonder how I'll be able to achieve FG of 1.014.

I've modified my brew to fit my BIAB setup and ended up with and OG of 1.053 (instead of 1.057 as planed). Mashed @ 67 °C as indicated on the website. Bubbling started vigorously after a couple of hours @ 19 °C and it even managed to spill a bit out of the airlock seal. I cleaned it and it's still going.

Now, about the FG, there was nothing on the recipe indicating the usage of simple sugars to achieve a FG lower than 1.020. However some people mentioned that it should lower during secondary at a higher temperature. Should I plan on adding sugars or should I just let it be and raise its temps after a week or so?
Yeah, I tried it for my recent esb instead of s04 and only got 1.022. Overall not really impressed with the yeast, don't think I will be using again.
 

CPlazas

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You could do either, but, whichever you do, give it lots of time to finish. One of the things about this yeast is that if you give it long enough, it will ferment some more. I always use it in beers with some simple sugars, and I get good attenuation with it.
Thanks for the input. It's been a couple of days and activity on the airlock stopped as many users reported. The good thing is that I already do give plenty of time for my beers to ferment so it's not a problem. About adding simple sugars, I think I'll give a try without doing it. Hopefully it works with time if not then I know next batch should have some.

Yeah, I tried it for my recent esb instead of s04 and only got 1.022. Overall not really impressed with the yeast, don't think I will be using again.
Did you add sugars? How long was it fermenting?
 

TheCache

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reading through this thread is interesting. My brew is slightly different, it's an extract brown: 6.6 lbs LME, 1 lb Belgian candi syrup and about 1.9 lbs of steeping grains. Minimal hops, all put into the boil before the 30 minute mark.

The OG was 1.054. I pitched two rehydrated packages of Lallemand London ESB at about 67 degrees. I held the temp during fermentation between 65-67. Fermentation went wild in about 8 hours and continued up through around 46 hours and then all visible activity stopped. A gravity reading after 5 days read 1.02, I allowed the temp to rise to around 70 to see if it would drop a little further, but after 8 days gravity is still 1.02. I was expecting a final around 1.014.

I figure I'll leave it for another 5-7 days to see if it picks up again. At least I hit the 1.020 mark, which seems to be the magic number for this yeast. The beer (without carbonation) tastes pretty good, it is a little sweet, but not excessively so and it may enhance the flavor of a brown ale anyhow.

Is there anything I can/should do to get the yeast moving again, or do I just wait it out, or is this it?
 

Elric

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No sugars added, two weeks fermenting. Exact same approach with s04 would normally get me to 1.017 or lower in about 10 days, and I'm not getting anything unique enough off the yeast flavor wise to make me have any reason to use this under attenuating yeast again
 

khannon

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Interesting, I've used this yeast numerous times in my mockingbird bitter..
for a 10 Gal final, I use
17# Maris Otter
1.25# C60
.5# flaked oats
mash 90 mins at 154
4 oz of challenger hops(total) with 1 at 60min, .5 at 15 mins, and 2.5 at flameout.

I ferment at 64-66 F, ramping to mid 70s as it finishes. Starting with 1.044-1.048 I have ended with 1.012-1.016, I always let this beer age 6 months or so, but fermentation is usually done in a week and a half or so.

Carb it low and it's a great bitter. I've used other yeasts and I don't always get the bitter/esb out of it, the the recipe works pretty well with saison yeast too, so sometimes I split the batch.

It's even taken 2(local) medals with the danstar yeast.. I think part of it is that it's not a "big beer" or even a "medium beer" yeast and needs to be treated that way.
 

Elric

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I think part of it is that it's not a "big beer" or even a "medium beer" yeast and needs to be treated that way.
it's called esb, so it should at least handle the abv range of the style. I was going for a 5.7 brew and ended up with a 5.2. I mean, it's pretty poor attenuation if your 1.048 brew finishes a point below what my 1.061 was supposed to attenuate to according to brewers friend with that yeast selected.
 

ba-brewer

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Interesting, I've used this yeast numerous times in my mockingbird bitter..
for a 10 Gal final, I use
17# Maris Otter
1.25# C60
.5# flaked oats
mash 90 mins at 154
4 oz of challenger hops(total) with 1 at 60min, .5 at 15 mins, and 2.5 at flameout.

I ferment at 64-66 F, ramping to mid 70s as it finishes. Starting with 1.044-1.048 I have ended with 1.012-1.016, I always let this beer age 6 months or so, but fermentation is usually done in a week and a half or so.

Carb it low and it's a great bitter. I've used other yeasts and I don't always get the bitter/esb out of it, the the recipe works pretty well with saison yeast too, so sometimes I split the batch.

It's even taken 2(local) medals with the danstar yeast.. I think part of it is that it's not a "big beer" or even a "medium beer" yeast and needs to be treated that way.
Is it just this particular beer you age for 6month or do you age others that long too?

I have found that if I let my Bitter(s) age a month or two I get much more character. I used to kick the kegs in less time than I wait to drink them now.
 

khannon

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I age varying beers for different times..

NEIPAS, IPAs, pale ales I tend to go as quick as possible on, Belgians, saisons(which could be Belgian or french) I tend to go a month or 3, some others like my bitter or tripel, or stouts, I tend to wait a few months, and some of the sours could be year(s). I just blended( a few months ago, or more) a 3 year traditional(almost) gueze for my youngest's 21st birthday, took a 1 year, 2 year and 3 year, blended, and it will condition a year(until Jan) when his birthday is. His first(served) beer was at Cantillion, and he took a look at his sibling's 21st birthday beers that we had brewed, he requested probably the biggest brew I've done..(There are pics of ~30Gals in corked and capped 750's in another thread that are awesome though, I had to buy a rack to put in my "beer cave" to support ~120 bottles). We kept some to put into local comps once they start happening again.

It's all about building a pipeline, and planning brews appropriately. Doing 10 gals at a time helps, though working in IT, this whole covid thing has had me buying beer just to keep up. I would love to get to the point that I could age some of my "standard" beers a bit longer. I think some of the browns and milds could use a bit more time.

All of that being said, in normal times, the 6(ish) month aged bitter goes almost as quickly as my IPAs, the kids have friends(that have told me they are over 21) that have determined that drinking here is cheaper than a night out, so a 5(ish) gal keg lasts less than a week unless it's a sour or something odd, so maybe I have to start making crappier beer or something..
 

khannon

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it's called esb, so it should at least handle the abv range of the style. I was going for a 5.7 brew and ended up with a 5.2. I mean, it's pretty poor attenuation if your 1.048 brew finishes a point below what my 1.061 was supposed to attenuate to according to brewers friend with that yeast selected.
I don't disagree, but finishing at 1.012-1.016 leaves a malty beer that can still have some hops character. That is what many english beers accentuate, the malt, not a super hoppiness or bitterness. and honestly ending with a balanced 4-4.2% beer is what I'm looking for. I'll grab one of the saison yeasts if I want to drop to less than 1.00, making a nice dry ester filled beer.
I like to keep my grain bill simple, and other than some IPA/NEIPA, my hops bill is pretty simple. In certain beer the yeast shines, whether that is a hefe, a bitter/esb, a belgian, a sour, or even an NEIPA, I love what the little critters do for us.

Like I told my neighbor when he returned a tool(with beer) to me the other day, "The right tool makes all the difference, even if I'm that tool."
 

Northern_Brewer

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Is it just this particular beer you age for 6month or do you age others that long too?

I have found that if I let my Bitter(s) age a month or two I get much more character. I used to kick the kegs in less time than I wait to drink them now.
Most British homebrewers would say brown bitters peak at around 2-3 months, after that you start losing the fruitiness. They can be good for up to a year, but after 6 months they definitely start changing into something a bit different, like going from Santenay to Nuits-St-Georges.

Outside the world of US yeast labs, a lot of British yeasts are weakly phenolic - there's definitely a bit of phenolics in a good pint of Harvey's Best for instance - so it's not a ridiculous idea to have a bit of Belgian-ness in there, something like T-58 can work quite well. You probably want to be generous with aeration to control the phenolics on a full-blown Belgian yeast though.

it's called esb, so it should at least handle the abv range of the style. I was going for a 5.7 brew and ended up with a 5.2. I mean, it's pretty poor attenuation if your 1.048 brew finishes a point below what my 1.061 was supposed to attenuate to according to brewers friend with that yeast selected.
The yeast can handle the ABV, it just needs appropriate recipe design to accommodate the attenuation. Although

a) ESB is not a style of beer, other than in one old version of BJCP guidelines
b) The yeast is not called ESB, its official name is LalBrew® London English-Style Ale Yeast.
 

CPlazas

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So many different experiences, I've wished I saw before I brewed my bitter. Can anyone with more experience comment on using this yeast for this recipe: Fuller's ESB Clone - Brew Your Own

I was looking for a Fullers clone as my first British brew since I really enjoy their ESB. I've read some people commenting that this was the closest to the original. Anyways, of all yeasts I only had access to Lallemand's which is why I've used it. If I knew I'd probably mash at a lower temperature of like 60 and ramp it to 67.

Most British homebrewers would say brown bitters peak at around 2-3 months, after that you start losing the fruitiness. They can be good for up to a year, but after 6 months they definitely start changing into something a bit different, like going from Santenay to Nuits-St-Georges.

Outside the world of US yeast labs, a lot of British yeasts are weakly phenolic - there's definitely a bit of phenolics in a good pint of Harvey's Best for instance - so it's not a ridiculous idea to have a bit of Belgian-ness in there, something like T-58 can work quite well. You probably want to be generous with aeration to control the phenolics on a full-blown Belgian yeast though.



The yeast can handle the ABV, it just needs appropriate recipe design to accommodate the attenuation. Although

a) ESB is not a style of beer, other than in one old version of BJCP guidelines
b) The yeast is not called ESB, its official name is LalBrew® London English-Style Ale Yeast.
Is it possible that they switched names? There is an older technical sheet for it with the name London ESB English-Style Ale Yeast.
 

dmtaylor

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The yeast can handle the ABV, it just needs appropriate recipe design to accommodate the attenuation. Although

a) ESB is not a style of beer, other than in one old version of BJCP guidelines
b) The yeast is not called ESB, its official name is LalBrew® London English-Style Ale Yeast.
I totally agree with your first statement. I see the London-whatever yeast as a great tool in my toolbox, and a good brewer can design around the attenuation thing without a problem to come out with a beer that tastes like whatever they like. Also I'll mention, I don't think the finished beer has THAT much more body or sweetness as compared with an average beer, i.e., though the final gravity might be "high", the beer doesn't necessarily taste thick or syrupy, definitely not. The alcohol is the main thing impacted, resulting in a more "sessionable" beer. And the more malt we can pack into a low alcohol beer, the tastier the low alcohol beer in my opinion.

Regarding (a), meh, I don't care what people call the style or don't call the style. It's a strong or special bitter or whatever, all fine by me.

Regarding (b)...... this yeast is in fact marketed differently in different places. Here's how it appears on my LHBS shelf:

1601299887418.png
 

dmtaylor

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Great questions, which unfortunately I cannot yet answer. I just bought some London ESB and will form opinions on that later. In the meantime, you might want to try Munton's ale yeast, which is very similar, very low attenuator like the others, but has a huge fruity ester thing going on like tutti fruitti.
Update to this old post: I found the London ESB yeast to give a pretty darn clean result, almost even lager-like I would say, at least fermented cool in the low 60s F and given a long conditioning time of 2+ months. If there were esters, they were mild and didn't last long. I like this at least in a malty style of beer because it lets the malt really shine through. I do wonder however if the hop character is meanwhile muted by this yeast.
 

Northern_Brewer

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Regarding (b)...... this yeast is in fact marketed differently in different places. Here's how it appears on my LHBS shelf:
I think it's just a question of them rebranding it, but inventory in the old packets haven't worked their way through the system yet - I imagine it sells rather more slowly than their Voss or Verdant.

Same has happened with the old Munich becoming Wit, which at least avoids the confusion with Munich Classic, which seems to have happened as the same time as they moved to the new look for their packets. Lallemand US is showing "London English-Style" and the new packets on their website.
 

CPlazas

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Just took a sample from the fermenter and it is exactly at 1.020 SG.
 

dmtaylor

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Same has happened with the old Munich becoming Wit...
Wit!?!?!? I was right!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 
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Elric

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I think it's just a question of them rebranding it, but inventory in the old packets haven't worked their way through the system yet - I imagine it sells rather more slowly than their Voss or Verdant.

Same has happened with the old Munich becoming Wit, which at least avoids the confusion with Munich Classic, which seems to have happened as the same time as they moved to the new look for their packets. Lallemand US is showing "London English-Style" and the new packets on their website.
my package is still the London ESB packaging, so I stand by my complaint. I care less about the attenuation than the flavour profile honestly. I have zero fruity esters coming from it. I feel the yeast flavor contribution is as important to me in a strong bitter as the malt and I just didn't get it with this yeast. Since I brew small batches I still have a half pouch so I'll give it another chance with a different recipe and see if I like it any more.
 

CPlazas

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Good news, it really resumed fermenting exactly 2 weeks after putting it into the fermenter. It's been going for a couple of days now. I'll let it sit for a week and take a gravity reading to see if it's around my FG.
 

Elric

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Update of my own. I don't dislike the yeast/recipe as much as my early impressions... I was performing a rookie mistake drinking it fresh out of the fridge. I have had a couple now where I have taken them out and let them warm a bit before drinking and the malt is there more and there is a bit of fruity esters present that the cold was suppressing.
 

Miraculix

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That was also my impression with this yeast. I think 95% of the time, the people that are complaining about this yeast are actually blaiming the yeast for their own mistakes. This is a British yeast and must be treated accordingly. It needs highly fermentable wort, otherwise the fermentation will finish at 55-60%. That is a normal thing for british yeasts. A good idea would be to give it a long rest at 65C and a mashout step at 77c, or to do Hochkurz mash, 45 minutest at 62 and then about half an hour at 69 plus the 15 minutes mashout at 77. Also to include about ten percent of the fermentables as simple sugars is of benefit with a yeast like this. I made quite some nice beers with this yeast this way. The only thing that I do not like is that it was quite powdery, but keeping the beers in the fridge solves this issue in about a week.
 
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