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General Category => Yeast and Fermentation => Topic started by: Pi on August 17, 2011, 10:07:21 PM

Title: Mash first; starter second?
Post by: Pi on August 17, 2011, 10:07:21 PM
I was thinking instead of making a starter using DME, what if I mashed an extra gallon, and used it to make the starter. Maybe chill the (Pale Ale 1.058) wort until yeast is ready to pitch, than bring the wort up to room temp.? Is infection a concern?
Title: Re: Mash first; starter second?
Post by: morticaixavier on August 17, 2011, 10:11:48 PM
Infection would be a concern as it will take a couple of days to get your starter ready. but the concept is sound in terms of mashing for a couple extra quarts of wort. You want around 1.030 - 1.040 for an OG on the starter though but you could water it down. You can freeze or pressure can the starter wort for later use. A lot of folks sparge a little bit more after getting the preboil volume just for starters.
Title: Re: Mash first; starter second?
Post by: majorvices on August 17, 2011, 11:54:23 PM
I use extra run off for my starters all the time. But that's usually for a batch down the road. Ideally you want to make your starter a few days before brewing to give it chance to actually grow yeast. That said, you can make a starter, pitch the yeast the day before, or even the morning of, brew day to just proof the yeast and get it active. While this isn't ideal it is far better than just pitching a vial (for ales, anyway. You really need to grow yeast up or pitch several vials for a lager).

That said, if you plan to proof and pitch active be sure to have a packet or two of dry yeast on hand in case the starter doesn't get started.
Title: Re: Mash first; starter second?
Post by: bluesman on August 18, 2011, 12:45:37 AM
I also use the second runnings for my starter wort as a general practice. You can "can" it, freeze it or even use it right away. Your starter wort gravity should range between 1.020-1.030. I also use second runnings to activate chilled starter slurry. Just make sure the temp. differential is within 10 degrees or thereabouts prior to pitching. You don't want to scortch those little yeasty devils.  :)
Title: Re: Mash first; starter second?
Post by: Malticulous on August 18, 2011, 02:39:04 AM
It could be done. My tap water is too hot. I can only cool my wort down to 80-75 right now. I put it in a sanitized fermenter, chill it, and pitch many hours later. I could make a starer with near the same wort diluted with cold water and pitch it just after the growth phase. No chill brewers have done it. Not only that but they sanitize their fermenters with hot wort.
Title: Re: Mash first; starter second?
Post by: ynotbrusum on August 19, 2011, 01:24:07 AM
To be honest with you, I prefer scheduling my brewing so that I can use the yeast slurry from the prior batch whenever possible.  No starter to worry about and you can do this about 5 times or so without concern of mutation, bud scarring or contamination if you are sanitary in your procedure.  Everything said above is correct about starters - don't go too high with your gravity, either, if you are going to be away while the stir plate does its thing (I have cleaned up the result of a high gravity starter and it is messy and sticky).