I am making an attempt at harvesting some dregs, I haven't checked on it yet, but I'm hopeful that it is doing its thing. I am trying to harvest some Brett, how will I know if it's ready to be pitched? And how is everyone harvesting their own?
What are the steps youve taken thus far? When harvesting from bottle dregs you need to start small, ~200ml of 1.020 wort, you probably wont see much activity with that step but it should get things woken up. Then feed it 500ml of some 1.040 wort and see if things progress, you'll see some activity and if not you should see a yeast layer on the bottom of the vessel. After that you should probably step it at least one more time with 1L of 1.040 wort, by which point you may have enough for a batch, but its all a guessing game.
You have to evaluate by how the yeast reacts when you feed it. You really cant build it up too much, but you can do it too fast so starting low and slow is the way to go.
This past friday evening i had a couple brews with the old lady and saved the dregs. I waited for them to be room temp and boiled up a starter wort, cooled the wort to room temp and added it to the dregs of two bottles. I added approximately 3/4 of a cup of starter wort to each at about 1.020 grav. Wrapped the top of the bottles with sanitized paper towel and topped it all off with some aluminum foil to keep everything in place. Then i put it away and i plan to check on it today after work. Thanks for the advice. Im hoping i didnt muck anything up when i put it together
Aluminum foil on top would have been fine, even if sanitized I would think the paper towel still has a lot of particles you dont want dropping into your starter. Sanitation is of the upmost importance when yeast culturing, stick to tools that are easily rinsed/sanitized.
Checked my yeast last night and there was ACTIVITY! I was so excited! It is sitting in there bubbling away. Okay, now when i add the 1.040 wort, should i dump the 1.020? Just want to get all my facts straight before i take the next step. I have never cultured my own yeast before and i want everything to go right. I put in the 1.020 on friday evening last week, when would be a good time to add the 1.040?
If you have space in the vessel you can just pour the fresh 1.040 wort right on top. If you dont have space then let it finish and decant the spent wort leaving the yeast slurry at the bottom behind, then pour your fresh wort on top of the little yeast cake you have. Then watch it grow!
Keep in mind you must be very sanitary while doing these things, do it in an area with no cross wind or anything as well.
I'm in the process of doing this for the first time, as well. I started with 100ML of 1.030 OG wort on the dregs of two Bell's Porters. After two days, I added 200ML of 1.030 OG wort and let it go on the stir plate for 24 hours. I then cold crashed, decanted and let it sit (in a mason jar with the sanitized lid ) for about a week or so in the fridge. I pulled it out yesterday, let it warm up and pitched it into 2L of 1.030 - 1.040 wort and put it on the stir plate. Krausen had formed overnight. I'm now debating if I cold crash it and decant between now and tomorrow morning.
I also did mine in a mason jar and i now have 2 jars full of brett yeast that i cant wait to use! im pretty stoked about how well it worked! thanks for everyones advice and all that jazz! i wouldnt have been confident in doing it without the advice i have received. I didnt have a stir plate or anything of that nature, but everything has been working out great so far!