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General Category => Yeast and Fermentation => Topic started by: scottNU on August 10, 2013, 03:02:00 PM

Title: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: scottNU on August 10, 2013, 03:02:00 PM
Hi folks,

How many strains of yeast does this crowd keep around the house?  I have started to save and wash the yeast cake from my past two brews.  I end up with 4 jars of each.  I am ending up taking up quite a bit of space in the refrigerator. 

In my opinion, one of the cool things of being a homebrewer is being able to use as many different strains as I would like.  Economics become more important to bigger brewers and they may need to limit production to one or two strains. But this is my hobby, not my job!

I need to give away some of the yeast to brewing friends. But I think my answer to my question is 1.  One house strain to keep and have available all the time.  The next question is which house strain?  ;D
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: gymrat on August 10, 2013, 03:08:45 PM
I always use dry yeast. I like the storage feature :) I have BRY 97 for my American Ales, S 04 for my British ales, Nottingham for my IPA's, and Windsor Ale for my Stouts, porters, or anything else I want to showcase the malts in.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: thebigbaker on August 10, 2013, 03:13:37 PM
I always have a few packs of US-05 on hand and I've recently started keeping some 1056 in the fridge.  I'm doing what was suggested in another thread and make my 1056 starters 500ml larger than what's needed.  After pitching the necessary amount of starter, I save the 500ml extra, transfer into a sanitized mason jar of boiled/cooled water.  I now will always have fresh 1056 ready to go in the fridge and US-05 as a backup. 

I might do the same with a Belgian yeast, but haven't decided which Belgian would be my house yeast (1214, 3522, or 3787).

Other than that, when I brew a particular style that calls for a different yeast, I'll just pick it up at my LHBS.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: denny on August 10, 2013, 03:57:32 PM
I usually keep 1056, 1450 and 3787 around on a regular basis, as well as some 05 in case of emergencies.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: reverseapachemaster on August 10, 2013, 04:23:40 PM
I have several strains banked in a freezer but I normally keep 1-2 strains in my fridge. Usually I have a neutral or English strain for the majority of beers I make in a year but then I'll use 2-3 other strains in the course of a year. I either buy them or pull them out of the freezer, use what I need and then bank them in the freezer until I need them next.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: The Professor on August 10, 2013, 05:45:49 PM
The commercial yeasts I use sometimes are:  1056, ECY10, 1968, and 04 (for emergencies). I always have the 04 on hand, and usually at least one of the liquid ones named...but don't routinely keep them all around.

My main house yeast that I use in the vast majority of my brews is one that I've kept alive since the 1980s, exact strain unknown.  It was passed down to me 2nd hand from a brewery source and  I'm reasonably sure it has mutated some since then.  So just exactly what it is is anyone's guess.  But it's still my favorite.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: erockrph on August 10, 2013, 06:27:35 PM
My yeast bank consists of packets of S-04, US-05, and 71b (for meads and other "I wonder if I can ferment this" experiments). If I want to keep a liquid strain going I'll generally plan a few brews and pitch on the cake of a lower gravity brew.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: scottNU on August 10, 2013, 06:34:33 PM
Thanks for all the great feedback. There are so many great options that I think getting a bigger refrigerator (or throwing out the vegetables) is the best plan.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: gmac on August 10, 2013, 06:40:48 PM
Thanks for all the great feedback. There are so many great options that I think getting a bigger refrigerator (or throwing out the vegetables) is the best plan.
Vegetables yes, meat no!

I use WLP007, 001, 670 and Wyeast3711 for 90 percent of my beers. Occasionally a wit yeast and 004 Irish Ale.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: Rhoobarb on August 10, 2013, 08:06:48 PM
I try to keep WY1469, SO4, either Nottingham or WLP007 (they seem very,very similar IMO) and WLP833 for lagers.  Used to be WY2206, but I've become a fan of 833.  I just tapped a Saison brewed with Belle Saison and am really digging it, so that may become a go-to, too.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: hopfenundmalz on August 10, 2013, 09:43:52 PM
002/1968 and 1469 for British bitter. 1028 for big beers. Playing with 022.

833 and 830 for lagers. Tried 940 and 835. Have one going with 860.

3787 for Belgian. 550 is nice too.

001/1056/us-05 gets a lot of use.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: cornershot on August 11, 2013, 02:07:24 AM
2 to 4 at a time. Right now it's 1056 and 007. Just retired 565, 023, and mangrove Jack west coast ale yeast. I usually go 2-5 generations before retiring.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: davidgzach on August 12, 2013, 01:31:50 PM
I usually have 3-5 at a time.  Mostly lager yeast as I like to mix up my 10G batches. 

Always have some 04 and 05 on hand just in case.

Dave
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: leejoreilly on August 12, 2013, 01:50:28 PM
I usually keep some 1056 and lately I've been doing Belgian Tripels and Dark Strong Ales, so I have some 530, too. I'll keep the yeast in my frig for up to six months from last harvest or four generations, whichever comes first. I've harvested a few other strains from batches of Stouts and Wits and such, but they always seem to run into the six month limit before I'm ready to reuse them. I also keep some dry Notty and 05, just in case.

I like the idea of making a larger starter and holding some back instead of harvesting from the fermenter; I'll have to try that.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: AmandaK on August 12, 2013, 02:08:31 PM
Depends on my mood and the season, but lately I've been using a LOT of WLP565 and WLP830 German Lager (I think I got the # right).
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: drjones on August 12, 2013, 04:07:20 PM
US-05, 04, and Belle Saison - dry and easy to manage.  This thread reminds me I have aging mason jars of washed Bavarian lager and 3711 in the fridge that need to be dumped...
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: morticaixavier on August 12, 2013, 04:48:11 PM
I've got a house Belgian/saison blend and a cake from a batch fermented with dregs from Almanac Brewers reserve. I'll probably save some wit yeast that will come out of the batch I brewed this weekend. I like to have some 05 on hand. I'm trying to get that house yeast blend worked into something I can keep going. I think I might try the larger starter and saving some method next time I pitch that.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: thebigbaker on August 12, 2013, 05:24:49 PM
I've got a house Belgian/saison blend and a cake from a batch fermented with dregs from Almanac Brewers reserve. I'll probably save some wit yeast that will come out of the batch I brewed this weekend. I like to have some 05 on hand. I'm trying to get that house yeast blend worked into something I can keep going. I think I might try the larger starter and saving some method next time I pitch that.


I got the larger starter idea form Duboman in this thread http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=16566.msg208515#msg208515 (http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=16566.msg208515#msg208515).  I've done this a couple of times with 1056 and it's much easier than washing yeast post fermentation.  So far the results have been great with normal fermentations you would get from a starter.  These batches haven't been kegged yet, so I have not final taste evaluation, but I expect it to be no different than using a fresh smack pack. 
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: kylekohlmorgen on August 12, 2013, 06:53:01 PM
Honestly, the only yeast I keep on hand is a mixed culture and a few brett strains. Sacch is just to much of a PITA to keep up on a regular basis.

If I'm brewing every week, I will use slurry from one batch to another. Otherwise, whenever I buy my ingredients for one brewday, I'll buy the yeast for the next batch.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: Alewyfe on August 12, 2013, 07:06:36 PM
4-6 Ale yeasts on hand. I only do a couple lagers a year so I buy them fresh when I'm planning the recipe.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: chezteth on August 12, 2013, 10:06:23 PM
I tend to have US-05, Nottingham and S-04 on hand. If I decide to brew a style that requires a different yeast then I will purchase it and make a starter if necessary. I used to use liquid yeast exclusively with dry yeast as backup. I realize now that I like the convenience of dry yeast.
Cheers,
Brandon
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: ynotbrusum on August 12, 2013, 10:23:09 PM
Are we talking intentional house yeasts?  Just kidding - I keep about 3 at any one time, one being a back up S-04 or US-05 in case of an emergency or a desired ale.  Lagers roll from batch to batch until I am tired of reusing them (34/70 is nice to have around).  Then the question is what about sours.....those are a sore subject with me right now, as I am replacing some plastic equipment due to that issue.  But I have some Saison II stored for use when I get the chance to cook up a nice session Saison for early fall.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: fmader on August 15, 2013, 03:29:33 AM
I have a couple strains of wlp 001... One that's used for IPAs and the other is used for most other less hoppy american style ales. I have a strain of wlp 320 and a strain of Wyeast 1272. I'm going to use wlp 004 for the first time Friday and I plan on harvesting it. When I started harvesting yeast, I would get four jars. I find that unnecessary now. I usually just harvest one jar and the occasional two jars in the case of a ten gallon batch. If you harvest four jars a brew, you'll have 28 jars of yeast laying around before you know it.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: Joe Sr. on August 15, 2013, 03:26:36 PM
4-6 Ale yeasts on hand.

Myself as well.  These are slurries saved from previous batches and tend to be 3787, Unibroue, Wyeast ESB, and probably another Belgian or two (Ardennes and Chimay, I think).  There's some what should be dumped.

I also have a stash of dry yeast that doesn't get touched too often.  But the house yeasts get a regular rotation.  After maybe six batches or so I'll start fresh from a new smack pack.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: blatz on August 15, 2013, 06:29:23 PM
I brew almost strictly german lagers and american ales, so I have either WL830 or 833 going in one fermentor and WL001/US-05 or WL007 going in the other. 

If i want to brew a one-off batch like a wit or something like that, then i purchase specifically that yeast for that batch.

I only buy yeast a few times a year, yet i brew every 2-3 weeks.
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: ynotbrusum on August 16, 2013, 11:09:55 AM
I brew almost strictly german lagers and american ales, so I have either WL830 or 833 going in one fermentor and WL001/US-05 or WL007 going in the other. 

If i want to brew a one-off batch like a wit or something like that, then i purchase specifically that yeast for that batch.

I only buy yeast a few times a year, yet i brew every 2-3 weeks.

Sounds very much like my regimen...not to hijack the thread, but how many generations do you go with your "house yeast"?
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: davidgzach on August 21, 2013, 01:17:54 PM
I brew almost strictly german lagers and american ales, so I have either WL830 or 833 going in one fermentor and WL001/US-05 or WL007 going in the other. 

If i want to brew a one-off batch like a wit or something like that, then i purchase specifically that yeast for that batch.

I only buy yeast a few times a year, yet i brew every 2-3 weeks.

Sounds very much like my regimen...not to hijack the thread, but how many generations do you go with your "house yeast"?

Same here.  I typically go 4-5 generations before starting over.

Dave
Title: Re: Number of House Yeasts?
Post by: scottNU on August 21, 2013, 02:56:51 PM
I brew almost strictly german lagers and american ales, so I have either WL830 or 833 going in one fermentor and WL001/US-05 or WL007 going in the other. 

If i want to brew a one-off batch like a wit or something like that, then i purchase specifically that yeast for that batch.

I only buy yeast a few times a year, yet i brew every 2-3 weeks.

Sounds very much like my regimen...not to hijack the thread, but how many generations do you go with your "house yeast"?

Same here.  I typically go 4-5 generations before starting over.

Dave

I was visiting the tap room of a small brewery in town.  Most of their beer have a Belgian influence and their house strain is some type of Trappist yeast.  We were talking about yeast and he said he felt the yeast "performed" the best in generation 3 or 4.

Most importantly, the beers were very good.