Author Topic: starter  (Read 7821 times)

Shakey_Dog

  • Guest
starter
« on: October 02, 2004, 02:20:55 PM »
I have never made a starter before.  For the past 5 or 6 years I have just used the pitchable White labs viles.

My question is.  Can you use corn sugar for a starter instead of DME like I have read in most places? :-/

Should you wait at least 24 hours before pitching?

Brew on!!

Don

Offline BeerSmith

  • Brewer, Author, Patriot
  • BeerSmith Administrator
  • BeerSmith Grandmaster Brewer
  • *****
  • Posts: 5568
  • BeerSmith - take the guesswork out of brewing!
    • BeerSmith
Re: starter
« Reply #1 on: October 03, 2004, 04:55:33 AM »
Don,
 I don't see any reason why you can't use corn sugar in a starter.  You should boil it and cool it first to make sure everything is sterile however.

 I actually boil up some wort and then bottle it in large sterile bottles and cap it.  Then whenever I need a starter I just pop the top on it and dump the yeast in.

Cheers!
Brad
Get a free trial of BeerSmith 3 here

Shakey_Dog

  • Guest
Re: starter
« Reply #2 on: October 03, 2004, 12:40:54 PM »
Brad,

Let me know if you think this will work.  

If I take yeast out of the bottom of a bottle conditioned brown and add it to about 2 cups of wort.  Let is sit at room temp until it becomes active.  Can I then just put it in the fridge until I am ready to use it?

And do you think I could just pitch it into a batch in say 4 weeks?

I have never done anything with yeast before and I guess I could be getting a little dazed by everything I am reading.

Brew on,

Don

Offline BeerSmith

  • Brewer, Author, Patriot
  • BeerSmith Administrator
  • BeerSmith Grandmaster Brewer
  • *****
  • Posts: 5568
  • BeerSmith - take the guesswork out of brewing!
    • BeerSmith
Re: starter
« Reply #3 on: October 03, 2004, 02:08:51 PM »
You can preserve yeast in this way.  Everything must be EXTREMELY sterile or you will get infection and bad beer, however.

I regularly take the yeast from the bottom of one batch, put it in a half full bottle of wort, and then put an airlock on it and store it in the fridge.  The air lock is important, as is making sure you have active fermentation before you chill it to keep positive pressure in the bottle.

It works well if all is sterile.  I've cultured some yeasts many times over and it has always done very well.

Cheers!
Brad
Get a free trial of BeerSmith 3 here

Shakey_Dog

  • Guest
Re: starter
« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2004, 01:02:17 AM »
Ok!

I took the slurry from a bottle of brown and add those few oz to a simple wort in another bottle.  The airlock is raised but no bubbles.  do I need to increase the sugar in wort or do you think it is ok to just put in the fridge and use at a later time?

Save the ales,

Don

hornbrau

  • Guest
Re: starter
« Reply #5 on: October 06, 2004, 04:39:03 AM »
Culturing yeast from a bottle will require more than one step up before pitching.  There is very little yeast in the bottom of a bottle conditioned beer and it probably has been dormant for quite some time.  I would give it 4 or 5 days at a minimum and look for evidence that some yeast multiplication/fermentation has taken place.  You can check for the following, air-lock activity, sediment on the bottom of the bottle, taste a sample of the wort it should be less sweet than the original wort.  After your confident that some fermentation has occoured step up your yeast in a quart or more of fresh wort and you should see some nice activity and then after that gets going good it will be ready to pitch.  Sometimes cultures from bottles will take sometimes they don't, you wouldn't want to ruin a batch of good beer by using a bad starter, make sure you have a healthy population of yeast before pitching.

Shakey_Dog

  • Guest
Re: starter
« Reply #6 on: October 07, 2004, 09:01:12 AM »
Thanks!!

That makes sense.  There is foam all over the top and plenty of sediment that was not there before.  

I think I will use this in a beer made from second runnings.  That way if I screw somthing up I wont really be out anything ;).

Brew on!

Don

Triple_Freak

  • Guest
Re: starter
« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2004, 08:39:05 AM »
Corn sugar shouldn't be used for starters, because it doesn't contain anything the yeast need for proper growth. Yeast require micronutrients that aren't present in corn sugar. Buy some LME, keep it in the fridge to prevent mold, and use it for making starters.

Shakey_Dog

  • Guest
Re: starter
« Reply #8 on: October 29, 2004, 11:03:45 AM »
For those that use startes.  What does it really do besides give you a faster and wilder fermentation?

Does it help the flavor at all.  I have been considering doing this but have been very happy with what I have been doing.  White Labs Pitchable.

Don

Shakey_Dog

  • Guest
Re: starter
« Reply #9 on: November 05, 2004, 02:29:35 PM »
I just got my 2000ml Pyrex flask from NB.   ;D

I am going to make my annual barlywine after Turkey day and that will be first time I get to use it.  Well a few days before I brew :)

cool,  More toys

Don

Offline Yeasty

  • BeerSmith Grandmaster Brewer
  • *****
  • Posts: 108
  • I love YaBB 1G - SP1!
Re: starter
« Reply #10 on: November 12, 2004, 03:35:19 PM »
I wouldn't put the starter in the fridge w/o activity. When it cools, guess what happens. Your fridge is hardly the cleanest place, most likely. With activity in the airlock, it will continue pushing out as the wort cools, making sure you don't suck anything in.
As for what it does for you, you're right about giving you shorter lag time, but the whole point of that is better flavor. When your wort cools, everything wants to get at that sugar and there's some fierce competition going on. The sooner the yeast you choose can take hold of the territory, the sooner you get rid of all the yeasts you didn't choose, as well as any small amount of bacteria that might be around. The time before this happens is the time that off-flavors get into your beer.

Another, smaller issue is that when the yeast are reproducing, before fermentation, they are using your sugars as an energy source. It's debatable how much affect it will have on the palette, but I work hard to get a high efficiency in my mash, and am all for giving the yeast something else to chew on until they're ready to get to work.

That said, I have to confess I've been pretty happy with my results using WLP by itself. But sitting beside me on my desk is my very first starter in a gallon jug, awaiting my porter tomorrow.

Shakey_Dog

  • Guest
Re: starter
« Reply #11 on: November 13, 2004, 01:27:04 AM »
Cool Yeasty.  a gallon jug.  I should have done that and saved the 20 bucks for a batch of beer. ;)

But Now I have a cool pyrex flask and I feel like I am a mad scientist. 8)

I can't wait to use it.  More toys

Don

Shakey_Dog

  • Guest
Re: starter
« Reply #12 on: November 28, 2004, 01:38:08 AM »
Made my first starter and pitched it in my annual Barleywine yesterday :o

Holly crap did it take off ;D.  I had some bubbles in 2 hours and in 8 hours it was blowing out of the airlock.  I had to hurry and put together a blow off :-*

There is a party going on in there.  It is a violent fermentation.

I will make a starter every time now.  That is cool stuff.

Don

Offline littlebrew

  • BeerSmith Grandmaster Brewer
  • *****
  • Posts: 117
  • I don't get any better than this.
Re: starter
« Reply #13 on: November 28, 2004, 11:30:46 AM »
We are what we repeatedly do.  Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit........Aristotle