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If you don’t like US-05, try some of the others. I’d suggest you try Nottingham. Dry packs, easy to keep on hand, just as easy to use, produces fine ales.
Good advice. I am a fan of both US-05 and Nottingham, but I can see how some may not like one or the other. Just depends on what you want in your beer!
 

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I like US-05, not for its supposed "cleanliness" (Kölsch yeasts are way cleaner, if cleanliness is what's needed) but for its nice peachy esters. The joy is mired however by its excessive and inconsistent tartness. It just comes about or doesn't, and most often it does. I tried the yeast in many ways: dry sprinkling, rerhydrating, making starter, slurry harvesting up to 3rd generatioln, cold fermentation, hot fermentation. I'm still to find out what makes some beers tart. Definitely, not an infection, it's a different kind of acidity than what Lactobacillus brings about in my rare infected beers. It also doesn't seem dependent on the grist or fermentation temperature (though, cold-fermented batches seem to come out acidic more often than the warm-fermented).
To me, it's a very unpredictable yeast, I never know what I get from it in the next batch. I'd like to stop using it alltogether but its unique peach nose and also that it's present in so many recipes makes me to continue my search for the US-05 sweetspot. Haven't found it yet, I must confess.
 
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Miraculix

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I like US-05, not for its supposed "cleanliness" (Kölsch yeasts are way cleaner, if cleanliness is what's needed) but for its nice peachy esters. The joy is mired however by its excessive and inconsistent tanginess. It just comes about or doesn't, and most often it does. I tried the yeast in many ways: dry sprinkling, rerhydrating, making starter, slurry harvesting up to 3rd generatioln, cold fermentation, hot fermentation. I'm still to find out what makes some beers tang. Definitely, not an infection, it's a different kind of tanginess than what Lactobacillus brings about in my rare infected beers. It also doesn't seem dependent on the grist or fermentation temperature (though, cold-fermented batches seem to come out acidic more often than the warm-fermented).
To me, it's a very unpredictable yeast, I never know what I get from it in the next batch. I'd like to stop using it alltogether but its unique peach nose and also that it's present in so many recipes makes me to continue my search for the US-05 sweetspot. Haven't found it yet, I must confess.
Sounds like my personal mystery with the coming and going head retention problem. I cannot give you any advice but just wanted to say, what would home-brewing be without these little things that we just cannot get a grasp on. Probably boring :D.
 
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No doubts, that well may be very true for many!

For me, I hate uncertainty and unpredictability in brewing, as well as in life in general. I pre-calculate my brews the most thorough way, down to a single gram, and plan the process to a tiniest detail. That's why I like brewing: there's not much places left in this life where I still keep the full control. There's no place for spontaneousness in my book; order and planning is everything. And when something works not as planned and the chaos comes loose, I get pretty frustrated. I'm looking at you, Fermentis US-05.
 

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No doubts, that well may be very true for many!

For me, I hate uncertainty and unpredictability in brewing, as well as in life in general. I pre-calculate my brews the most thorough way, down to a single gram, and plan the process to a tiniest detail. That's why I like brewing: there's not much places left in this life where I still keep the full control. There's no place for spontaneousness in my book; order and planning is everything. And when something works not as planned and the chaos comes loose, I get pretty frustrated. I'm looking at you, Fermentis US-05.
Hahahaha, that might the the true reason why it seems only to affect you. The wise us05 tries to teach you a valuable lesson, to use Yoda's words:

Embracing and accepting the chaos you must!
 

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I like the philosophic turn of this humble yeast conversation :)
My feeling is that I'm already forced to "embrace", "accept" and "tolerate" too much Chaos around me, which I have no means of control, to allow this schit to creep into my Brewhouse too.
So, US-05 chaotical tartness will be tamed or... Or no "or-s".
It will be wrestled, subdued and tamed some day, period. 😁
 

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When I first started homebrewing, one of the first kits I brewed came with Cali dry yeast. I thought it was really good. After being told it was just repackaged US-05, I purchased four 11 gr packets of US-05 from my usual online store because they didn't carry Cali yeast. Well, the first time I used it the beer tasted terrible and I figured being new to brewing it had to be something I did wrong. Just recently I brewed an all grain kolsch recipe and had some US-05 on hand and figured it won't be a kolsch but how bad could it really be? It tasted like some funky peach wine and I didn't care for the flavor at all. I don't remember Cali yeast tasting at all like this. It was fermented at 68f. At this point I've pretty much made up my mind that I won't be buying anymore US-05 and I strongly believe it's not the all purpose good for all yeast it's made out to be.

Yuck!


DMF
 

dmtaylor

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When I first started homebrewing, one of the first kits I brewed came with Cali dry yeast. I thought it was really good. After being told it was just repackaged US-05, I purchased four 11 gr packets of US-05 from my usual online store because they didn't carry Cali yeast. Well, the first time I used it the beer tasted terrible and I figured being new to brewing it had to be something I did wrong. Just recently I brewed an all grain kolsch recipe and had some US-05 on hand and figured it won't be a kolsch but how bad could it really be? It tasted like some funky peach wine and I didn't care for the flavor at all. I don't remember Cali yeast tasting at all like this. It was fermented at 68f. At this point I've pretty much made up my mind that I won't be buying anymore US-05 and I strongly believe it's not the all purpose good for all yeast it's made out to be.
The only dry yeast I'm aware of that's called "Cali" or "California" by the actual packager is Mangrove Jack M54 "California Lager", which is probably actually a repack of Fermentis K-97 German Ale yeast, not US-05 which is entitled "American Ale" yeast by the manufacturer. People might say US-05 is from Chico, California, and they might be correct. But what was the source of information about your "Cali" yeast? Did it say so on the pack, or did somebody verbally imply that this pack of yeast was meant for California-style ales or lagers? There is also a big difference between California ale and California lager, two totally different types of beer. California lager generally refers to Anchor Steam, a warm fermented lager, which is nothing like an ale brewed with a Chico yeast such as US-05. This can all be confusing for sure. If you meant to make an Anchor Steam or a Kolsch-style beer, but used US-05 and fermented cool, yes that's not going to turn out quite right. And yes, likely peachy, as you found out. This is not to say that K-97 or M54 would have turned out a whole lot better -- those yeasts have their own problems too in my experience -- tart, hazy, and yeasty instead of peachy. Better choices for a hybrid ale/lager might include BRY-97, S-04, S-23, or W-34/70.
 

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The only dry yeast I'm aware of that's called "Cali" or "California" by the actual packager is Mangrove Jack M54 "California Lager", which is probably actually a repack of Fermentis K-97 German Ale yeast, not US-05 which is entitled "American Ale" yeast by the manufacturer. People might say US-05 is from Chico, California, and they might be correct. But what was the source of information about your "Cali" yeast? Did it say so on the pack, or did somebody verbally imply that this pack of yeast was meant for California-style ales or lagers? There is also a big difference between California ale and California lager, two totally different types of beer. California lager generally refers to Anchor Steam, a warm fermented lager, which is nothing like an ale brewed with a Chico yeast such as US-05. This can all be confusing for sure. If you meant to make an Anchor Steam or a Kolsch-style beer, but used US-05 and fermented cool, yes that's not going to turn out quite right. And yes, likely peachy, as you found out. This is not to say that K-97 or M54 would have turned out a whole lot better -- those yeasts have their own problems too in my experience -- tart, hazy, and yeasty instead of peachy. Better choices for a hybrid ale/lager might include BRY-97, S-04, S-23, or W-34/70.
I was reffering to Cellar Science Cali Yeast,


Going to give K-97 and S-04 a try but definetly didn't like US-05

DMF
 

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Going to give K-97 and S-04 a try but definetly didn't like US-05
If you don't like US-05, you most likely won't like K-97 and S-04 as well.
Those three Fermentis yeasts strangely have much in common. Some make complains for their "breadiness". I never get it, but my complaint (that seems to be corroborated by others, though not as often as the "breadiness") is their excessive tartness. US-05 is the least tart of the three. To me, K-97 is tarter and S-04 is even more tart.
 

Miraculix

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If you don't like US-05, you most likely won't like K-97 and S-04 as well.
Those three Fermentis yeasts strangely have much in common. Some make complains for their "breadiness". I never get it, but my complaint (that seems to be corroborated by others, though not as often as the "breadiness") is their excessive tartness. US-05 is the least tart of the three. To me, K-97 is tarter and S-04 is even more tart.
Strangely, I have not had this tartness with the newer packs of S-04. When did you try it last time? It looks like they have changed something regarding production process or yeast strain used during the last months. Multiple people said that the newer version is much cleaner than the "old" version and not tart at all.

Breadyness is imo always connected with yeast being still in suspension. Once the beer dropped clear breadyness was gone in all of the cases I have whitnessed it. That is actually the best feature of S-04, it really drops like a stone and sticks to the bottle.
 

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If you don't like US-05, you most likely won't like K-97 and S-04 as well.
Those three Fermentis yeasts strangely have much in common. Some make complains for their "breadiness". I never get it, but my complaint (that seems to be corroborated by others, though not as often as the "breadiness") is their excessive tartness. US-05 is the least tart of the three. To me, K-97 is tarter and S-04 is even more tart.
I've actually tried K-97 with an Altbier but not a Kolsch. I didn't mind it or taste any kind of "tart" it tasted clean to me. What I hate about US-05 is the peach flavor. I've used a lot of Muntons Dry Ale Yeast which is an English yeast and I've had good results with it too.

DMF
 

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When did you try it last time?
No less than 2 years ago, I think. Tried S-04 many times in many ways, hated it intensely and never touched it again. Although I still have some 4 or 5 sachets, long past their BBF date (which means little to a knowledgeable homebrewer, as we know). Even being as frugal as I am, still couldn't make myself to use those sachets up.
Pure hate, hate, hate - because I spoiled back then quite a load of rare and expensive Chevallier malt, putting immense efforts into following historical English recipes and processes to a tee and consistently getting batch after batch of acidic, barely drinkable slop. Which I (being frugal) must drink up. Alone. Which I did. The beers weren't infected or something, they were perfect other than the yeast choise. Hence, the hate.
Won't buy it again even if it's better now. M36 is a way superior and safe substitute: same esters, same dynamics sans the acidity.
 
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CascadesBrewer

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Strangely, I have not had this tartness with the newer packs of S-04. When did you try it last time? It looks like they have changed something regarding production process or yeast strain used during the last months. Multiple people said that the newer version is much cleaner than the "old" version and not tart at all.

When would you say the timeline would be from "new" to "old"?

I did a split fermenter Porter about 3 years ago using S-04 and WLP013. I got a bit of a tartness in the S-04 and enjoyed the WLP013 a bit more (though many liked the S-04 better). I just made a Best Bitter with S-04 and I thought it turned out quite nice with no tartness I could detect. Maybe I will have to give S-04 more chances in the near future.
 

dmtaylor

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If you don't like US-05, you most likely won't like K-97 and S-04 as well.
Those three Fermentis yeasts strangely have much in common. Some make complains for their "breadiness". I never get it, but my complaint (that seems to be corroborated by others, though not as often as the "breadiness") is their excessive tartness. US-05 is the least tart of the three. To me, K-97 is tarter and S-04 is even more tart.
I have said in the past, and can confirm with my current batch, that S-04 is not tart at all. But K-97... hell yes.

If S-04 is bready, the bread is very slight and I only notice it if I really look for it hard. It's not immediately noticeable or distracting like other yeasts can be.

When would you say the timeline would be from "new" to "old"?
I am not exactly sure. It's recent. I brewed with it a couple times in 2021 with no problems. Prior to that, I had not tried it for many years, so I cannot pinpoint when the change happened.
 
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Miraculix

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When would you say the timeline would be from "new" to "old"?

I did a split fermenter Porter about 3 years ago using S-04 and WLP013. I got a bit of a tartness in the S-04 and enjoyed the WLP013 a bit more (though many liked the S-04 better). I just made a Best Bitter with S-04 and I thought it turned out quite nice with no tartness I could detect. Maybe I will have to give S-04 more chances in the near future.
Probably one year? maybe two? I am not sure tbh.
 

Miraculix

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No less than 2 years ago, I think. Tried S-04 many times in many ways, hated it intensely and never touched it again. Although I still have some 4 or 5 sachets, long past their BBF date (which means little to a knowledgeable homebrewer, as we know). Even being as frugal as I am, still couldn't make myself to use those sachets up.
Pure hate, hate, hate - because I spoiled back then quite a load of rare and expensive Chevallier malt, putting immense efforts into following historical English recipes and processes to a tee and consistently getting batch after batch of acidic, barely drinkable slop. Which I (being frugal) must drink up. Alone. Which I did. The beers weren't infected or something, they were perfect other than the yeast choise. Hence, the hate.
Won't buy it again even if it's better now. M36 is a way superior and safe substitute: same esters, same dynamics sans the acidity.
Yes, I like that m36 as well. HAs been a long time though.... thanks for the reminder.
 
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