From the HBD Archive
From: bliss@csrd.uiuc.edu (Brian Bliss)
Subject: Wyeast
Date: 1992-03-06 20:31:38 GMT

The main advantage of liquid yeast is that strains can be used
which cannot withstand the stress of dehydration, as mentioned
in the previous digest. As for why there is only 80 ml of wort
int the standard wyeast package, I don't know - I wish there
was more (which would require a substantially larger outer package
in order to keep CO2 pressure from exploding it).

The best method I've found for breaking the inner pouch is to
take a beer bottle with a slight concavity in the bottom, and place
it directly over the inner pouch, and strike the top with your
free hand. This concentrates all the pressure on the inner pouch,
without placing undue pressure on the outer pouch.

I've found that the different wyeast strains produce a variety
of different flavors, many unattainable with any dry yeast I've
used, and that most of them are more attenuative than any dry yeast,
at least when they aren't recultured.

However, I concurr with Jack S. and personally beleive that wyeast
"purity" is a myth. My first package was an english ale yeast, and the
starter went sour. I ordered another (dated the same), and by the
time it arrived (2 days max w/o refigeration, during april), the
outer package had already swelled completely up, but the inner
one was unbroken, and the package was obviously infected.

I just lost an entire batch of hefe-weizen to an infection that
I beleive came directly from the wyeast wheat beer yeast, though
in this case it could conceivably have been my own sanitation problem.
In any case, ALWAYS make a starter when using wyeast, and taste
a little to make sure it isn't sour before pitching. with such
little food for the yeast, which is kind of weird tasting in it's
own right, sometimes it is hard to to taste whether or not it is
slightly sour when you first cut the package open. I try to always
have a package of good ole dry whitbrtead ale yeast laying around in
case the beer is already brewing and the starter is sour - I've never
lost a batch to whitbread ale.

I just wish that wyeast would make larger packages, so there would
be no risk of contamination from my kitchen when making a separate
starter. Of course, if they did, and you tasted sour results,
you (and wyeast) wouldn't have your kitchen to blame it on.

Apologies to those who think the stuff is the greatest thing since
sliced bread; when it works, it works well, and hopefully we can
all agree on that...

bb


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