General Category > Yeast and Fermentation

Secondary Yeast

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coulter:
I have a double IPA that I have made before.
The last time I made it, I racked the beer into a carboy then added
WLP099 Super High Gravity Ale Yeast as my secondary yeast.

My question is -  Do I need to rack it first?
Does it matter if I pitch this yeast into the primary after the initial fermentation
stops?

What are the possible problems with this approach?

denny:
Do you really need another yeast?

coulter:

--- Quote from: denny on May 06, 2013, 09:45:19 AM ---Do you really need another yeast?

--- End quote ---

It was a 10% abv beer the last time I made it. Adding the second yeast caused a second very vigorous fermentation. I'm not sure it would be the same without it.

svejk:
Pitching yeast after fermentation has subsided can be a little tricky.  Can you tell us why you are pitching a secondary yeast? (I now see that you already answered this question)

In general, additional yeast is added to a batch in order to get the final gravity lower than what the first pitch of yeast were able to achieve.  The problem is that the presence of alcohol and CO2 make it a very tough job for that second pitch. 

In my experience, the only time I have had success with a second pitch of yeast having any effect on a batch was when I used a large volume of yeast slurry (either a yeast cake grown up in another batch or some slurry from a local brewpub).

To get to your questions, though, I would go ahead and put the secondary yeast in the primary, but I would check the gravity of the beer after fermentation stops to be sure it is needed.  You may find that the first pitch of yeast finished the job and there is no need for another pitch of yeast.

In the case of your prior experience, it looks like there were still a lot of available sugars for that second pitch to consume and that may very well be the case again if you used the same process.  Can you tell us what strain of yeast was used for your first pitch and how much you used (did you make a starter, use more than one pack of dry yeast, etc.)?

coulter:
I used a single 'tube' of White labs british ale yeast.
No starter.

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