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General Category => Yeast and Fermentation => Topic started by: klickitat jim on January 02, 2014, 04:21:28 AM

Title: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 02, 2014, 04:21:28 AM
Some time back I tried rinsing my yeast as I saw on a YouTube. It didn't do much for me so I've just been swirling my yeast cakes and settling in the fridge. Then I decant and pitch.

Last night I listened to Brew Strong yeast rinsing. I had a month old IPA cake in the fridge so I thought I'd hive Jamil's method a whirl.

So on kegging day I left a bit of beer on the cake. I sterilized a quart jar. Then I swirled the yeast and bit of beer till it was a homogeneous slurry. Dumped that into the sterile jar and put it in the fridge.

Today I sterilized a quart of water. This is my settled slurry and the sterile H2O.
(http://img.tapatalk.com/d/14/01/02/e5u7ypys.jpg)

Next I decanted the beer off the top of my settled cake. Then topped it off with sterile H2O.(http://img.tapatalk.com/d/14/01/02/7equnape.jpg)

Then I shaked the snot out of it. Crack the lid every few seconds so it doesn't grenade in your hands. Let it settle. Leave lid almost finger tip tight so gasses can escape.

(standby, story continues)
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 02, 2014, 04:34:44 AM
...leave lid loose.
(http://img.tapatalk.com/d/14/01/02/9uja8edu.jpg)

I let that settle an hour. Its hard to see in the photo but there are more dark bits n junk in the bottom inch or so. I think if this wasn't from a 10 srm hoppy dry hopped IPA, maybe it would be easier to see. Note the sterile water jar. I've dumped out some of it so it matches the level of the stuff I want to leave behind.(http://img.tapatalk.com/d/14/01/02/ydama6a4.jpg)

Next I do another decant. Now instead of decanting stuff I don't want down the drain, I'm decanting stuff I want into the sterile H2O jar. With the right amount of water in it it's easy to know when to stop pouring. (http://img.tapatalk.com/d/14/01/02/uhusama5.jpg)

I shook that again, cracking the seal frequently so I don't have to dial 911 with yeasty bloody hands. And then I popped it in the fridge. (http://img.tapatalk.com/d/14/01/02/eny4ubub.jpg)

Tomorrow we'll see what it looks like.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: Stevie on January 02, 2014, 04:38:13 AM
Your slurry looked pretty good to start Jim. Personally I get a metric ton of trub in the fermenter.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 02, 2014, 04:53:56 AM
Thanks. This is just for fun and to see what happens. That was one of my dirtier cakes. And it was getting old so I thought I'd play with it. Maybe someone will see this thread and it will help them. Maybe it will just prove that I don't need to bother.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: fmader on January 02, 2014, 04:56:42 AM
Looks good Jim! I like to read about different methods of harvesting yeast. I like to use three jars. I will dump two jars of sterile water into my carboy and shake up. Then pour the water/yeast/trub into the two jars. I let the trub settle out for about a half hour to 45 minutes. I decant the liquid sitting on the settled trub in one of the jars into the third jar. This is the goodness that I'm keeping. I dump the trub out of the first jar. Then I take the second jar and decant the good liquid into the newly empty jar. Then label the jars and put in the fridge. This way I have two nice slurries ready for when I have over-lapping brews.

I have a problem with you fridge though....I see only one beer!  :P
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: Stevie on January 02, 2014, 05:09:50 AM
I've been using the gallon jug technique pouring clean stuff into 4 pint mason jars. Again, I get a ton of trub in the fermenter. Each jar normally ends up with about two viles worth of yeast.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 02, 2014, 05:54:26 AM
Looks good Jim! I like to read about different methods of harvesting yeast. I like to use three jars. I will dump two jars of sterile water into my carboy and shake up. Then pour the water/yeast/trub into the two jars. I let the trub settle out for about a half hour to 45 minutes. I decant the liquid sitting on the settled trub in one of the jars into the third jar. This is the goodness that I'm keeping. I dump the trub out of the first jar. Then I take the second jar and decant the good liquid into the newly empty jar. Then label the jars and put in the fridge. This way I have two nice slurries ready for when I have over-lapping brews.

I have a problem with you fridge though....I see only one beer!  :P

(http://img.tapatalk.com/d/14/01/02/umu9avy8.jpg)

Just this, plus two kegs good stuff. Ignore the old lady's swill. I use them to determine if my fridge is still working.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 02, 2014, 05:59:14 AM
I've been using the gallon jug technique pouring clean stuff into 4 pint mason jars. Again, I get a ton of trub in the fermenter. Each jar normally ends up with about two viles worth of yeast.

I'm far from convinced that I will benefit from rinsing. The method in this thread is what jamil does, according to the podcast with good notes taken. But IIRC he usually repitches like I do. Settle,  decant, measure, pitch. Hey, maybe he'll chime in, huh?
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: pinnah on January 02, 2014, 01:48:09 PM
I love photo documentation!! 8)

It looks like a fun exercise, and the thought of pure yeasties is dreamy.
Personally, I have found these steps unnecessary.  That first pic is what I would store...in the fridge.




Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: fmader on January 03, 2014, 01:16:05 AM

I have a problem with you fridge though....I see only one beer!  :P

(http://img.tapatalk.com/d/14/01/02/umu9avy8.jpg)

Just this, plus two kegs good stuff. Ignore the old lady's swill. I use them to determine if my fridge is still working.

I didn't doubt you one bit ;)

I've never had... Or seen any of those commercials brews before. Must be some of those fancy west coast beers
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 03, 2014, 01:38:02 AM

I have a problem with you fridge though....I see only one beer!  :P

(http://img.tapatalk.com/d/14/01/02/umu9avy8.jpg)

Just this, plus two kegs good stuff. Ignore the old lady's swill. I use them to determine if my fridge is still working.

I didn't doubt you one bit ;)

I've never had... Or seen any of those commercials brews before. Must be some of those fancy west coast beers

Icicle is from Leavenworth, Wa. Cool town that is a must stop if you are with 250 miles. Good beer. The downtown is like a Bavarian village. Really cool.

Firestone Walker is one I've been hearing about but haven't found till now. Going to enjoy it tonight.

Here's the 24 hour results of the rinse. Very thin layer of fluffy less flocculant on top. Bottom 1/2" has a small amount of trube. The rest looks good.

(http://img.tapatalk.com/d/14/01/03/yre3areb.jpg)

Ruling:
For me and my equipment and yeast, I don't see enough benefit for all the work. The added slight risk of contamination makes the scales tip for me. I will be sticking with my very basic method, which is rack, swirl, store, decant, measure, pitch.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: The Professor on January 03, 2014, 02:36:36 AM
Ruling:
For me and my equipment and yeast, I don't see enough benefit for all the work. The added slight risk of contamination makes the scales tip for me. I will be sticking with my very basic method, which is rack, swirl, store, decant, measure, pitch.

That's the conclusion I arrived at as well after exerimentation.  No difference at all between rinsing/non rinsing and not at all worth the effort.  And I reptich through 6-7 gens to boot.

Rinsing and /or washing the yeast is an ok activity if you're into it, have the time, and like to fuss.  But I'm absolutely convinced that it's not necessary and that it doesn't result in any difference regarding the end result of the brew, even in beers that age for a year or more.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: Stevie on January 03, 2014, 03:18:27 AM
Firestone Walker is one I've been hearing about but haven't found till now. Going to enjoy it tonight.

Here's the 24 hour results of the rinse. Very thin layer of fluffy less flocculant on top. Bottom 1/2" has a small amount of trube. The rest looks good.

Ruling:
For me and my equipment and yeast, I don't see enough benefit for all the work. The added slight risk of contamination makes the scales tip for me. I will be sticking with my very basic method, which is rack, swirl, store, decant, measure, pitch.

Yeah, your washed yeast looks about the same as before. But ehh, your prewashed cake looks 100 times better than mine. From my experience, a higher water to cake ratio yields better results. More jars, but better yeast at the bottom. Maybe I will post a few shots of my next wash.

Union Jack is in a never ending fight with Racer 5 to be my favorite IPA. I don't mind. Session is my favorite camping beer. It's a little pricey here in Texas at $11-12 a six pack.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 03, 2014, 04:00:03 AM
My caveat was FOR ME, it ain't worth it. I think if a guy was getting dirty yeast he might try this. Also, this ain't washing its rinsing. Washing is a pH dropping process with acid, to kill bacteria but leave yeast only slightly wounded. I won't be doing that either.

Fun trial! Thanks guys
Title: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: Stevie on January 03, 2014, 04:08:55 AM
Yeah, yeah. Been calling it that for years. Doubt I'll stop. ;)
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 03, 2014, 05:19:12 AM
Personally, it's all good. Let's not develop a style guide for yeast handling with yeast handling style guide Nazis to keep us all in line. I was just pointing out how smart I am lol. Or, how I recently discovered BN.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: gymrat on January 03, 2014, 03:20:58 PM
Would it work just to drop the trub out from under my current beer, refridgerate it for a couple of weeks, then drop that trub into my next beer without all this washing?
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: pinnah on January 03, 2014, 03:23:40 PM
I was just pointing out how smart I am lol.

 :D, it really is these kinds of trials and experiments that make you a better brewer! 
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: hubie on January 03, 2014, 03:29:16 PM
I was just pointing out how smart I am lol.

 :D, it really is these kinds of trials and experiments that make you a better brewer!

I really appreciate all the pictures.  It is one thing to read about what the steps are, but it really helps (me, at least) to see it as well.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: tommymorris on January 03, 2014, 03:36:21 PM

Would it work just to drop the trub out from under my current beer, refridgerate it for a couple of weeks, then drop that trub into my next beer without all this washing?

That works. You can use the Mr Malty calculator to estimate how much of the old slurry you need. Use the slurry tab.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: breweite on January 03, 2014, 03:41:14 PM
I just did some yeast washing this morning!  My only question is about head space:  My mason jars aren't filled to the top, will this be a problem?
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: fistfullofhops on January 04, 2014, 04:15:29 PM
Great report. I love the pictures. Thanks for posting.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: reverseapachemaster on January 04, 2014, 04:24:53 PM
I just did some yeast washing this morning!  My only question is about head space:  My mason jars aren't filled to the top, will this be a problem?

Not necessarily but if you are concerned you can always top them up with boiled (and cooled) water.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: gymrat on January 05, 2014, 12:06:13 AM

I captured these two jars of trub from my conical. I am guessing the one on the left is mostly just yeast poop. But the jar on the right is a stratus of good yeast and a strata of beer. I am thinking in two weeks all I should have to do is decant the beer off of the yeast and dump it in my new beer. Does that sound right? The styles will be very similar so I don't see any reason to "wash" the yeast. Also how tight should I have the lids on?

(http://i288.photobucket.com/albums/ll171/homersimpson_album/IMG_9610_zps2167ea5e.jpg)
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 05, 2014, 11:48:14 AM
Do it as tight as you would when canning. Turn the band lightly with thumb and finger tips till you feel it start to grip. That about x inch pounds of torque. In other words I have no clue. Tight enough so stuff won't crawl in, loose enough that it won't hold pressure. Once it's nice n cold that doesn't matter as much.
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 05, 2014, 11:49:59 AM
I might get a few half gallon jars and try this again with freshly harvested yeast. It might be that it works better with more water...
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 12, 2014, 01:04:05 AM
I picked up a case of half gallon mason jars. My new method is to sterilize a half gallon jar, cool to~ 50°, decant all beer of the yeast cake, pour enough of the sterile water onto the yeast to equal a half gallon, swirl slurry and dump into the 1/2 jar. Refirgerate.

On brew day I decant the water, swirl into a homogeneous slurry, then measure and pitch. Yes I get a little trube that way, but I also get some of all of the yeast, not just early flocculators, or late...
Title: Re: Yeast Rinsing
Post by: klickitat jim on January 12, 2014, 01:38:32 AM

I captured these two jars of trub from my conical. I am guessing the one on the left is mostly just yeast poop. But the jar on the right is a stratus of good yeast and a strata of beer. I am thinking in two weeks all I should have to do is decant the beer off of the yeast and dump it in my new beer. Does that sound right? The styles will be very similar so I don't see any reason to "wash" the yeast. Also how tight should I have the lids on?

(http://i288.photobucket.com/albums/ll171/homersimpson_album/IMG_9610_zps2167ea5e.jpg)

Another backdoor way of checking your harvest is to use a good pitch calculator. For instance if you pitch 100ml into 2000ml of 1.035, lets say you should end up with 300ml. Well if you have 400 then it's probably 25% trube.

Looking at your picture, regarding the jar on the right... yes the light colored layer at the top is probably the freshest cleanest yeast, but it's also the last to drop out of solution. If one was to continually repitch only that layer, you would eventually change the character of your yeast. It would probably be more attenuative and less flocculant than the mother pitch. (Or great grandmother as the case may be)  This is why I swirl, to try to keep the same traits as the parents.