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yeast nutrient


Master Brewer
Nov 25, 2010
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I have seen several recipes calling for different yeast nutrients and I was wondering why?  I know there are several yeasts that have a reputation for sticking and they might need a kick start or I guess if you use a nutrient in the boil then this might not happen.

I have never used those yeast and have had very good success with the main brand liquid yeast.

So, why would recipes call out for a nutrient?
Because you may not get all the nutrients when you get your extract from your mash or in your extract you buy  . This you will you need to produce optimal yeast growth and health to make the best beer you can
I view yeast nutrient as a cheap insurance policy.  $2.50 for 20 batches worth?  Toss it in.
I don't know much about yeast.  (had a chance to hear a PHD on yeast speak and had other obligations :mad:  From what I have read, doesn't grain hold the necessary nutrients for beer yeast?

I thought it was just a few strains that were prone to getting stuck during fermentation?
Count me in the category that, at the very least, its cheap insurance. Cheap is goood !

I think dogma46an2 is right, I've read there are required yeast nutrients, for example zinc, not supplied by the grains. Checking my municipal water report, no zinc content. So I'm thinking I'll try to keep my yeast happy, and add the nutrient. "If the yeast aren't happy, no one is happy."  ;)

Having said that, I have made several beers w/o nutrient. It seems to me they have always fermented OK, assuming healthy yeast, wort temperature is in the ballpark, etc. Being a relative beginner, I'm trying to improve processes and improve my beers.
  I always make a starter.  If Im using a Wyeast Smack pack, I smack the bag and then pitch into the starter so they have their nutrients then.  It worked well for me last time.
I guess pitching it for the sake of pitching the nutrient is fine.  I have good water here in the Pac NW and my ferment temps are always around 68f give or take a degree.  I have just never hit a final gravity I wanted without it.

I was just wondering what grain doesn't contain that beer yeast needed. Like Roger said, maybe zinc.  Is Zinc in the nutrient?

I have made several meads and I know they need nutrients.
I fiqure they are doing all the important work... might as well make them happy.... (or at least not PI$$ them off!)