Wyeast Bioligist recommends 18-24 Hour Starter MAX and 3 Packs of Yeast per 5 Gal Batch

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.

BandonBrewingCo

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 6, 2012
Messages
217
Reaction score
73
Location
Innsbruck
Thought this was very interesting where he states 1 pack of wyeast in 2 Liter starter is doubled in 18-24 hours. The video below he states he packs at a rate of 3 packs per 5 Gallons of wort!

I can't find any discussion on these videos even though they are quiet old...



 
I don't have the bandwidth to watch where I am right now but 3 smack packs is $$ for an average gravity brew. Maybe he's just going by cell count.
 
Sounds about right. I always start with a single pack and do at least a 2 step of 1-2L decanted into another 5L starter for a 18g batch of 1.050 ale and a 3 step of 1-2L decanted into another 5L decanted and into another 5L for a 18g batch of lager. Im sure I may be overdoing it but at the end of the day I maybe waste 5 dollars on a batch that cost 70. It's cheap insurance. Cheers
 
Sounds like they should increase their base cell counts if they are advocating always using a starter or pitching multiple smack packs. I’ve always assumed that they were packaged to target an acceptable pitch rate for 5 gallons of wort @ 1.050 SG.

Imperial Organic Yeast and GigaYeast have already migrated to 200B starting cell counts, and are only marginally more expensive than Wyeast and White Labs. Even my local yeast guys, Inland Island, are packaging 200B cells. Seems like there’s less and less reasons to stick with the big dogs, unless you’re looking for a special strain.
 
Sounds like they should increase their base cell counts if they are advocating always using a starter or pitching multiple smack packs. I’ve always assumed that they were packaged to target an acceptable pitch rate for 5 gallons of wort @ 1.050 SG.

Imperial Organic Yeast and GigaYeast have already migrated to 200B starting cell counts, and are only marginally more expensive than Wyeast and White Labs. Even my local yeast guys, Inland Island, are packaging 200B cells. Seems like there’s less and less reasons to stick with the big dogs, unless you’re looking for a special strain.
Definitely would be great if they increase the cell count but not if it makes it alot more expensive as alot of us start with single packs and build them up for that exact reason. I'm sure you can make good beer with 1 pack but that's the bare minimum and leaves little room for errors. Not to sound smug but I'm the type of brewer trying to make the best beer on the planet and will stop and almost nothing until I get there. Some brewers are just trying to make beer easily and aren't overly picky. Cheers
 
Thought this was very interesting where he states 1 pack of wyeast in 2 Liter starter is doubled in 18-24 hours. The video below he states he packs at a rate of 3 packs per 5 Gallons of wort!

I can't find any discussion on these videos even though they are quiet old...





Odd since Wyeast's official recommendations contradict this. 1 pack, no starter for 5 gallons at 1.060 or less. Empirical evidence backs this up too.
 
I don't have the bandwidth to watch where I am right now but 3 smack packs is $$ for an average gravity brew. Maybe he's just going by cell count.

I'll bet he gets a deal on his smack packs. :)

I haven't watched the videos but I'm trying to figure out how I'm producing great beer without using three smack packs...or 2-liter starters.

I use one smack pack (or White Labs pure pitch tube) for everything I brew, including lagers. I never use more than a 1 liter starter, even for lagers. In fact, with lagers, I do a 1-liter starter, oxygenate the starter wort, and pitch that starter into the fermenter at roughly 18 hours after it begins. I don't crash the starter, I don't decant it, the whole 1 liter goes in. Then I let it sit at 70 degrees or so for another six hours before I start moving the temp down to 50 degrees.

I just kegged a dark lager today that I brewed 8 days ago. I could drink it right now, but I'm going to let it condition a bit.

My point is that I'm not doing anything close to what that biologist is saying, and my beer is doing....rather well.

I'll bet almost no one else is doing that that biologist is saying, either.
 
Last edited:
Well in his case its $0 for yeast.
Yeah, he can easily talk that way.

I think he makes the case that a single pack doesn't "pack" enough yeast, even for a 5 gallon, 1.050-1.060 pitch. That totally contradicts what the labs have been claiming all along: a simple, single pouch pitch is plenty.

We do agree yeasts starters are needed, unless your money is worth less than your time and a half pound of DME.
 
I'll bet he gets a deal on his smack packs. :)

I haven't watched the videos but I'm trying to figure out how I'm producing great beer without using three smack packs...or 2-liter starters.

I use one smack pack (or White Labs pure pitch tube) for everything I brew, including lagers. I never use more than a 1 liter starter, even for lagers. In fact, with lagers, I do a 1-liter starter, oxygenate the starter wort, and pitch that starter into the fermenter at roughly 18 hours after it begins. I don't crash the starter, I don't decant it, the whole 1 liter goes in. Then I let it sit at 70 degrees or so for another six hours before I start moving the temp down to 50 degrees.

I just kegged a dark lager today that I brewed 8 days ago. I could drink it right now, but I'm going to let it condition a bit.

My point is that I'm not doing anything close to what that biologist is saying, and my beer is doing....rather well.

I'll bet almost no one else is doing that that biologist is saying, either.
This is one of those homebrewer things. If your happy with "rather well" then you've succeeded. As I said above I'm aiming for professional product at home. I want to make a Pliny the elder clone and have mine chosen by a large group of people as the better version in a blind taste test. Maybe making a 5 litre starter only makes a 2% difference in the finished product that most can't taste. To me that 2% is worth the time and effort no matter how much time/effort/ money is required to get it. Don't take this as a elitist type thing I'm just saying we all have different end goals. My goal is 10/10 finished product. I would never and have never pitched a single vile into 5 gallons without at least a starter of some sort. Cheers
 
After watching the video again he doesn't state that a single vile isn't enough to do the job it's that HE personally used 3 vials and for the reasons he states. I think the packaging is going on the fact if you used it fresh it will ferment 5 gallons of 1.050 wort all the way. Obviously that the bare minimum requirements. I'm actually surprised I seem to be the odd man out here I thought it was pretty common to disregard the bare minimum numbers on the pack and build it up.cheers
 
After watching the video again he doesn't state that a single vile isn't enough to do the job it's that HE personally used 3 vials and for the reasons he states. I think the packaging is going on the fact if you used it fresh it will ferment 5 gallons of 1.050 wort all the way. Obviously that the bare minimum requirements. I'm actually surprised I seem to be the odd man out here I thought it was pretty common to disregard the bare minimum numbers on the pack and build it up.cheers

A yeast calculator will tell you one pack is not enough (or optimal) for a 5 gallon batch unless it is fresh and low gravity. Im not surprised that the wyeast guy is saying he uses 3 packs. Some of the better lager brewers are using 5 packs for lagers in 5 gallons and then repitching slurry.

IMHO the yeast companies should be packing way more yeast into their packages rather than the small amount they do. Imperial yeast are making good steps in that direction.
 
A yeast calculator will tell you one pack is not enough (or optimal) for a 5 gallon batch unless it is fresh and low gravity. Im not surprised that the wyeast guy is saying he uses 3 packs. Some of the better lager brewers are using 5 packs for lagers in 5 gallons and then repitching slurry.

IMHO the yeast companies should be packing way more yeast into their packages rather than the small amount they do. Imperial yeast are making good steps in that direction.
Well said. I agree
 
I don't think they're trying to sell more yeast with this, they always say use a smack pack plus starter if required. I found the 18-24 hour starter time the most interesting though
 
This is one of those homebrewer things. If your happy with "rather well" then you've succeeded. As I said above I'm aiming for professional product at home. I want to make a Pliny the elder clone and have mine chosen by a large group of people as the better version in a blind taste test. Maybe making a 5 litre starter only makes a 2% difference in the finished product that most can't taste. To me that 2% is worth the time and effort no matter how much time/effort/ money is required to get it. Don't take this as a elitist type thing I'm just saying we all have different end goals. My goal is 10/10 finished product. I would never and have never pitched a single vile into 5 gallons without at least a starter of some sort. Cheers

In my case, rather well is....terrific. A little understatement. I believe my beer is better than most commercial beers I've had. In some cases the commercial beer is similar (Pisgah Brewing in Black Mountain NC has tremendous beer, IMO. I felt like I was drinking my own). Others have offered similar comments.

I don't disagree that minor improvements can add up; that actually has been the philosophy I've followed. Every place I can make even minor improvements to the process, I do it. I believe that all adds up.

But having said that, I originally developed my method for starters, then found in White and Zanischeff's "Yeast" book that it is a reasonable approach. I talked with a professional brewer this summer about my approach. He said they have a 30-barrel fermenter but can only brew 15-barrel batches, so what they do is pitch the yeast into the fermenter with the first batch, and it's oxygenated and going, and then later they add the second half. Same approach as I use.

So....while the approach is unconventional, it's defensible based on what's in the Yeast book as well as my conversation with a professional brewer. I know most don't want to fool with oxygenating a starter, but I believe it produces a better and healthier yeast. As well, I often have activity in the fermenter within just a few hours. I pitched some 2112 starter into a fermenter yesterday at 4pm; at 8pm I already had bubbling. And it's going like mad today.

In the end, everybody gets to do what makes them happy. This makes me happy, and makes great beer.
 
In my case, rather well is....terrific. A little understatement. I believe my beer is better than most commercial beers I've had. In some cases the commercial beer is similar (Pisgah Brewing in Black Mountain NC has tremendous beer, IMO. I felt like I was drinking my own). Others have offered similar comments.

I don't disagree that minor improvements can add up; that actually has been the philosophy I've followed. Every place I can make even minor improvements to the process, I do it. I believe that all adds up.

But having said that, I originally developed my method for starters, then found in White and Zanischeff's "Yeast" book that it is a reasonable approach. I talked with a professional brewer this summer about my approach. He said they have a 30-barrel fermenter but can only brew 15-barrel batches, so what they do is pitch the yeast into the fermenter with the first batch, and it's oxygenated and going, and then later they add the second half. Same approach as I use.

So....while the approach is unconventional, it's defensible based on what's in the Yeast book as well as my conversation with a professional brewer. I know most don't want to fool with oxygenating a starter, but I believe it produces a better and healthier yeast. As well, I often have activity in the fermenter within just a few hours. I pitched some 2112 starter into a fermenter yesterday at 4pm; at 8pm I already had bubbling. And it's going like mad today.

In the end, everybody gets to do what makes them happy. This makes me happy, and makes great beer.
I guess we will have to agree to disagree on this one. No doubt if you're happy with the beer you make keep doing it. However to suggest pitching a single pack of yeast with a 1L starter into a lager is abit of a stretch. The recommended pitch rate is 410 billion cells per 5g/1.050 batch. Your suggestion would only equal appx 251 which imho is WAY low. Alot of pros have to do 2 brews to fill a fermenter but there's no way there underpitching by that much with so much money at stake.cheers
 
I guess we will have to agree to disagree on this one. No doubt if you're happy with the beer you make keep doing it. However to suggest pitching a single pack of yeast with a 1L starter into a lager is abit of a stretch. The recommended pitch rate is 410 billion cells per 5g/1.050 batch. Your suggestion would only equal appx 251 which imho is WAY low. Alot of pros have to do 2 brews to fill a fermenter but there's no way there underpitching by that much with so much money at stake.cheers

Well, there's a hitch: I pitch that yeast at about 70 degrees, at high krausen, and leave it there for a period of six hours or so before I start it down to fermentation temp. I believe that by the time that wort gets down there, I have got the cells I need. In essence, I'm doubling the starter in the fermenter.

So I agree with you that we need a certain number of cells. But I've gotten enough terrific feedback on this, including a really nice Pils I've done a couple of times, that I believe it works.

@Morrey has had the pils. He's a source of other information about the quality of my beer, FWIW. And yes, I'm happy with my beer, but I also look for feedback from others. I'm not some newbie who thinks that just because it's his baby it's great.
 
Well, there's a hitch: I pitch that yeast at about 70 degrees, at high krausen, and leave it there for a period of six hours or so before I start it down to fermentation temp. I believe that by the time that wort gets down there, I have got the cells I need. In essence, I'm doubling the starter in the fermenter.

So I agree with you that we need a certain number of cells. But I've gotten enough terrific feedback on this, including a really nice Pils I've done a couple of times, that I believe it works.

@Morrey has had the pils. He's a source of other information about the quality of my beer, FWIW. And yes, I'm happy with my beer, but I also look for feedback from others. I'm not some newbie who thinks that just because it's his baby it's great.
I see where your going with it but not sure I agree that it would makeup the difference in that short of a time but of course do what works. I feel for the 1.50 of DME and a litre of tap water it's worth the extra insurance especially if your already making the starter. I also generally do larger batches so have more to loose than some if it's not excellent lol. Cheers

for clarification i was only talking about the lagers. a 1L starter in a low gravity ale i can see that method working better as its only a slight underpitch. cheers
 
Last edited:
I see where your going with it but not sure I agree that it would makeup the difference in that short of a time but of course do what works. I feel for the 1.50 of DME and a litre of tap water it's worth the extra insurance especially if your already making the starter. I also generally do larger batches so have more to loose than some of it's not excellent lol. Cheers

for clarification i was only talking about the lagers. a 1L starter in a low gravity ale i can see that method working better as its alot less of a underpitch. cheers

I originally was playing with this approach because I was diddling around with LODO stuff. One of the things LODO people do is preboil the strike water to drive off oxygen (there's also a way to use yeast to deoxy water, but I preboil). Anyway, when we boil starter wort, what are we doing? Driving off oxygen. It occurred to me that perhaps I might like to oxygenate that starter wort. I know people will say the stir plate will oxygenate the wort, but it has to be slow, and since yeast need O2 to build cells walls....I had a hard time seeing how pitching yeast into deoxygenated starter wort was optimal.

So I do that, running O2 into the starter wort for 30 seconds before putting on the stir plate. And I pitch warm into the fermenter, into wort where the yeast can again reproduce before taking them down to 50 degrees. It may be unconventional--hell, it is unconventional--but I've had great success with it. I also couldn't figure out how it was optimal to crash the starter, decant, and then try to revive the yeast. Why not pitch while it's very active?

I'm just telling this story so it doesn't look like I'm a loony. I am, but don't want to look that way. :) There's method to the madness, but I'm not saying it's the only way to do things. It works for me, and it's now my standard way of doing things. I don't do very high gravity beers, so I'd do bigger pitches and probably oxygenate partway through the fermentation (I've read to do this, but I don't do really big beers so it's from memory).
 
I originally was playing with this approach because I was diddling around with LODO stuff. One of the things LODO people do is preboil the strike water to drive off oxygen (there's also a way to use yeast to deoxy water, but I preboil). Anyway, when we boil starter wort, what are we doing? Driving off oxygen. It occurred to me that perhaps I might like to oxygenate that starter wort. I know people will say the stir plate will oxygenate the wort, but it has to be slow, and since yeast need O2 to build cells walls....I had a hard time seeing how pitching yeast into deoxygenated starter wort was optimal.

So I do that, running O2 into the starter wort for 30 seconds before putting on the stir plate. And I pitch warm into the fermenter, into wort where the yeast can again reproduce before taking them down to 50 degrees. It may be unconventional--hell, it is unconventional--but I've had great success with it. I also couldn't figure out how it was optimal to crash the starter, decant, and then try to revive the yeast. Why not pitch while it's very active?

I'm just telling this story so it doesn't look like I'm a loony. I am, but don't want to look that way. :) There's method to the madness, but I'm not saying it's the only way to do things. It works for me, and it's now my standard way of doing things. I don't do very high gravity beers, so I'd do bigger pitches and probably oxygenate partway through the fermentation (I've read to do this, but I don't do really big beers so it's from memory).
Well said. Brew on. Cheers
 
I originally was playing with this approach because I was diddling around with LODO stuff. One of the things LODO people do is preboil the strike water to drive off oxygen (there's also a way to use yeast to deoxy water, but I preboil). Anyway, when we boil starter wort, what are we doing? Driving off oxygen. It occurred to me that perhaps I might like to oxygenate that starter wort. I know people will say the stir plate will oxygenate the wort, but it has to be slow, and since yeast need O2 to build cells walls....I had a hard time seeing how pitching yeast into deoxygenated starter wort was optimal.

So I do that, running O2 into the starter wort for 30 seconds before putting on the stir plate. And I pitch warm into the fermenter, into wort where the yeast can again reproduce before taking them down to 50 degrees. It may be unconventional--hell, it is unconventional--but I've had great success with it. I also couldn't figure out how it was optimal to crash the starter, decant, and then try to revive the yeast. Why not pitch while it's very active?

I'm just telling this story so it doesn't look like I'm a loony. I am, but don't want to look that way. :) There's method to the madness, but I'm not saying it's the only way to do things. It works for me, and it's now my standard way of doing things. I don't do very high gravity beers, so I'd do bigger pitches and probably oxygenate partway through the fermentation (I've read to do this, but I don't do really big beers so it's from memory).
I don't know at what rate you give oxygen to your starter but you might not need to give it 30 sec. In the yeast book it say 5gal of worts only needs 1 minute of 1L/min to get up into the recommended range for optimal growth (8-10ppm). Most likely when you get your stir plate going any excess with be driven out just like CO2.

The warm pitch thing is a known practice, I believe it is outlined in the yeast book.
Chris white talks about in this video at about 51mins
 
I don't know at what rate you give oxygen to your starter but you might not need to give it 30 sec. In the yeast book it say 5gal of worts only needs 1 minute of 1L/min to get up into the recommended range for optimal growth (8-10ppm). Most likely when you get your stir plate going any excess with be driven out just like CO2.

Yeah, I've been trying to figure out how much to do. My thinking was that the oxygen bubbles only have about 1.5 inches of wort before they pop through the surface, whereas with a 5-gallon fermenter the bubbles travel through much more wort. So I was kind of using Kentucky Windage to estimate that 30 seconds was reasonable. Seems to work, which is somewhat amazing given it was just a gut feeling.

The warm pitch thing is a known practice, I believe it is outlined in the yeast book.
Chris white talks about in this video at about 51mins


It is in the book--I ran across it after I'd tried it, so I was comfortable to have Chris White confirm it. :)

Speaking of Chris White, I'm going to the BYO boot camp in Asheville next March. One of the workshops I'm doing is on Yeast, taught by guess who?

EDITED TO ADD: Just watched the pertinent part of the video. Whew! So what I'm doing is OK. He says in the video a lot of people do it, but I can't recall running across anyone here who does, though I've seen 3 or 4 who also oxygenate their starter wort.
 
I don't know at what rate you give oxygen to your starter but you might not need to give it 30 sec. In the yeast book it say 5gal of worts only needs 1 minute of 1L/min to get up into the recommended range for optimal growth (8-10ppm). Most likely when you get your stir plate going any excess with be driven out just like CO2.

The warm pitch thing is a known practice, I believe it is outlined in the yeast book.
Chris white talks about in this video at about 51mins
Unfortunately I don't have the time to watch that video currently but I will check it out when I get home. Of course pitching warm isn't a new thing but being able to pitch a 1L starter instead of the recommended 5L when pitching warm was new to me. Honestly though having the means to make the bigger starter I've never really looked into it. Learn something new every day. Cheers
 
My thinking was that the oxygen bubbles only have about 1.5 inches of wort before they pop through the surface, whereas with a 5-gallon fermenter the bubbles travel through much more wort.

Another way is to blow some oxygen in the headspace of the starter flask and shake.
 
Ha. I wonder how many packs of saccharomyces bruxelensis white labs would expect you buy before they started upping the cell count.
Gifters.
 
This is one of those homebrewer things. If your happy with "rather well" then you've succeeded. As I said above I'm aiming for professional product at home. I want to make a Pliny the elder clone and have mine chosen by a large group of people as the better version in a blind taste test. Maybe making a 5 litre starter only makes a 2% difference in the finished product that most can't taste. To me that 2% is worth the time and effort no matter how much time/effort/ money is required to get it. Don't take this as a elitist type thing I'm just saying we all have different end goals. My goal is 10/10 finished product. I would never and have never pitched a single vile into 5 gallons without at least a starter of some sort. Cheers

There's an assumption here that you can't get 10/10 great beer without a huge starter, or that a starter makes any positive difference at all. I'm not one to toot my own horn, but I'd take my beer over three quarters (or more) of the stuff brewed commercially. I've learned that yeast is very forgiving, and that if there are quality issues with the beer, yeast pitching rate is one of the least likely causes.

In my opinion, yeast starters should only be for big beers or high volume when one pack is definitely not enough. For run-of-the-mill 5 gallon 1.060 beers, I think starters need to be relegated to the 'homebrewing myths' archive.
 
There's an assumption here that you can't get 10/10 great beer without a huge starter, or that a starter makes any positive difference at all. I'm not one to toot my own horn, but I'd take my beer over three quarters (or more) of the stuff brewed commercially. I've learned that yeast is very forgiving, and that if there are quality issues with the beer, yeast pitching rate is one of the least likely causes.

In my opinion, yeast starters should only be for big beers or high volume when one pack is definitely not enough. For run-of-the-mill 5 gallon 1.060 beers, I think starters need to be relegated to the 'homebrewing myths' archive.
There's no doubt you might make good beer even if you under pitch but I think there's also no doubt you can also have a bad beer due to under pitching. It's like driving without your seat belt. It might never be a problem but why take the chance? Not to start a big huge debate here but I imagine the people winning the homebrew contests and the top pro brewers would disagree that pitching the correct amount of yeast is a myth. If wyeast GAVE you 3 packs of yeast and your choices were pitch 1 and throw the rest away or pitch 3 would you still choose to underpitch? I'm curious what you see as the advantage of doing it that way. Cheers
 
There's no doubt you might make good beer even if you under pitch but I think there's also no doubt you can also have a bad beer due to under pitching. It's like driving without your seat belt. It might never be a problem but why take the chance? Not to start a big huge debate here but I imagine the people winning the homebrew contests and the top pro brewers would disagree that pitching the correct amount of yeast is a myth. If wyeast GAVE you 3 packs of yeast and your choices were pitch 1 and throw the rest away or pitch 3 would you still choose to underpitch? I'm curious what you see as the advantage of doing it that way. Cheers

I would use one pack and store the other two or give them away to friends. I wouldn't pitch two or more as I consider this an over-pitch that has, at least for me, resulted in loss of yeast character on British and Belgian styles.

The question is whether or not one pack is under-pitching, and I don't think it is going by Wyeast's recommendations and my own empirical evidence. Reason being, when I pitch a healthy pack directly to the wort, I see activity in a 6 to 18 hour window, which is right where I want it to be (its usually 12). Any sooner and there are so many cells available that new ones aren't being produced. Significantly longer, and there aren't enough. Interestingly, I typically see activity sooner without a starter. The only time I had a 2 - 3 day delay was with a starter. It's of course not confirmation that a starter delays the process, but it is an interesting thing I've noticed on my system.

That said, it really comes down to what a person feels comfortable doing more than anything. If it works, I say roll with it. :mug:
 
I would use one pack and store the other two or give them away to friends. I wouldn't pitch two or more as I consider this an over-pitch that has, at least for me, resulted in loss of yeast character on British and Belgian styles.

The question is whether or not one pack is under-pitching, and I don't think it is going by Wyeast's recommendations and my own empirical evidence. Reason being, when I pitch a healthy pack directly to the wort, I see activity in a 6 to 18 hour window, which is right where I want it to be (its usually 12). Any sooner and there are so many cells available that new ones aren't being produced. Significantly longer, and there aren't enough. Interestingly, I typically see activity sooner without a starter. The only time I had a 2 - 3 day delay was with a starter. It's of course not confirmation that a starter delays the process, but it is an interesting thing I've noticed on my system.

That said, it really comes down to what a person feels comfortable doing more than anything. If it works, I say roll with it. :mug:
Maybe in the specific style examples you've given underpitching would help. The conversation I was having was more specific to making lagers with a pretty substantial underpitch from the more standard method. Say your making a 1.050 lager. White labs GIVES you 5 packs of yeast free with the catch that you can ONLY use them for that single batch. You can't save them or give them away. Would you still choose to underpitch and throw the remaining packs away or would you pitch them all? I only asking as it seems to me the only reason to underpitch is it's less work and or less cost? Cheers
 
Maybe in the specific style examples you've given underpitching would help. The conversation I was having was more specific to making lagers with a pretty substantial underpitch from the more standard method. Say your making a 1.050 lager. White labs GIVES you 5 packs of yeast free with the catch that you can ONLY use them for that single batch. You can't save them or give them away. Would you still choose to underpitch and throw the remaining packs away or would you pitch them all? I only asking as it seems to me the only reason to underpitch is it's less work and or less cost? Cheers

The example I gave isn't an under-pitch situation.
 
The example I gave isn't an under-pitch situation.


Sorry to clarify i was under the impression originally that you were replying to mine and mongooses discussion specifically regarding pitching a 1L starter into a 5gallon lager using his process. I felt it was a under pitch but its working well for him. i have always went on the high side and would have gone with a 4L in a 5 gallon batch of lager but i dont pitch warm so that could make the differance. Your example wouldnt be a underpitch as its over the minimum recomendation by 18 billion cells and i can see why you would choose to pitch closer to the minimum rate of 82 billion cells rather than the optimum rate of 293 billion if your trying to get the yeast flavor in those specific british and belgian styles but would you still pitch a single vial into say a pale ale your trying to get a clean profile in? whats your opinion on lagers? to clarify im not challenging you. just seeing what works for people. cheers
 
Last edited:
Sorry to clarify i was under the impression originally that you were replying to mine and mongooses discussion specifically regarding pitching a 1L starter into a 5gallon lager using his process. I felt it was a under pitch but its working well for him. i have always went on the high side and would have gone with a 4L in a 5 gallon batch of lager but i dont pitch warm so that could make the differance. Your example wouldnt be a underpitch as its over the minimum recomendation by 18 billion cells and i can see why you would choose to pitch at the minimum 82 billion cells rather than the optimum rate of 293 billion if your trying to get the yeast flavor in those specific british and belgian styles but would you still pitch a single vial into say a pale ale your trying to get a clean profile in? whats your opinion on lagers? to clarify im not challenging you. just seeing what works for people. cheers

I meant ales, so sorry for the confusion if you thought I meant lagers. The closest I come to it is Kölsch, and I pitch just the one smack pack. The last one I did a couple months ago kicked off in just 6 hours and made a beautiful beer. As for typical ales with a neutral profile, I do the same pitching rate and it works very well for me. The only time I do a starter is if the pack is old, swells slowly, or if I'm reusing stored yeast slurry that's been in the fridge for quite a while.
 
The more I think about it im not sure id bother making a starter if I was making a lower gravity 5 gal ale and had a fresh pack of yeast either. In my case because I always do 12-18 gallons and always start with a single pack of yeast I have to build it up regardless. I have a good stirplate and 5l flask so I figure might as well build it to the higher end. Cheers
 
Ignoring the fact that cell count calculators are HORRIBLY inaccurate, I really only do vitality starters these days. Only ever had one comment about yeast character in a beer, though it was definitely an issue of butyric acid so I guess YMMV.
 

Latest posts

Back
Top