Author Topic: A Twist on Starter Technique  (Read 1922 times)

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #15 on: September 12, 2015, 12:31:20 PM »
Sounds like drauflassen.  In fact, you will probably get more yeast growth if you use a lot more of the wort for the first step.  My last pils I was short on yeast, so I pitched it into only 5 gallons (half the batch), then siphoned the other 5 gallons into the fermenter 24 hours later.  Seemed to produce excellent results for what was about half the yeast "needed" (for 1.5 m cells/ml/Plato).

Sierra Nevada and other large breweries use the drauflassen method. Paul, did they mention they have some 1600 barrel fermenters that they use for lagers?

I have done the run off of some of the chilled wort on ales to wake up the starter. Got that from my friend Bob in the club years back. Don't always do it, but it does get the fermentation going strong.

For lagers I have sometimes waited to pitch in the conical, as I let the tub settle then dump out of the bottom valve then pitch the yeast. I have run some fresh wort into the starter to get things going before the pitch. Not worried about a late pitch, as the wort was chilled to 45F.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2015, 12:36:52 PM by hopfenundmalz »
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Offline dilluh98

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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #16 on: September 12, 2015, 07:44:37 PM »
Maybe this is a silly question but would there be any value/difference in taking some of the wort early on in the boil that doesn't have hops yet and is at a lower gravity to make this "native starter"?

Online f00b4r

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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #17 on: September 14, 2015, 09:43:51 PM »

Maybe this is a silly question but would there be any value/difference in taking some of the wort early on in the boil that doesn't have hops yet and is at a lower gravity to make this "native starter"?

I was thinking along similar lines. Shouldn't starter wort be within a certain gravity range for optimum conditions (this could also be achieved by diluting to a target gravity)?

Offline dilluh98

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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #18 on: September 15, 2015, 11:30:37 AM »
I ended up using this method on a pale ale I made this weekend. I took out about 1 L of wort after it had been boiling for 10 min. I First wort hopped this batch so that liter had some hop material in it. Put it in the fridge for a few hours, pitched a vial of yeast into it once it hit room temp, shook the hell out of the mixture in a 1 gallon jug and let it sit for ~8 hours and then pitched into the then cool wort. I tried to keep the hop material out of the native starter but some found its way in. Didn't matter - the batch took off like gangbusters within 4 hours at 64F. I'm sold.

Offline beersk

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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #19 on: September 15, 2015, 01:05:00 PM »
I like it. Thanks for the info, guys!

Offline brewday

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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #20 on: September 15, 2015, 04:23:22 PM »
On Sunday I brewed a 1.050 K. Common and used a version of this technique - I  pulled 1L+ of chilled wort from the conical, pitched WY2565 into the flask, shook it up and stirred it very slowly (sorry Mark!) for 4 hours.  At that point it appeared ready so I pitched it back into the conical with 62° wort (direct O2) and it was off and running a few hours later.

Here's the starter at 4 hours:

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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #21 on: September 15, 2015, 09:24:50 PM »
What everyone is seeing is the advantage of pitching at high krausen instead of letting the culture ferment out.  Pitching at high krausen has the advantage of pitching cells that are still somewhat in the exponential growth phase as well as pitching cells that still have substantial ergosterol and unsaturated fatty acid (UFA) reserves.  The synthesis of these compounds is a big part of what happens during the lag phase.  Lower ergosterol and UFA reserves generally translate to a longer lag phase.  Now, if we add in the fact that quiescent cells (cells that have fermented out) have undergone survival-related morphological changes that have to be reversed before the cells can go back to consuming sugar in addition to having to rebuild much lower ergosterol and UFA reserves, it is easy to see what a starter that is pitched at high krausen results in shorter time period between pitching and the onset of visible fermentation.  Yeast pitched at high krausen also places a lower O2 load on wort due to having higher ergosterol and UFA reserves from the start.

I have also reached the conclusion that the reason why that the shaken, not stirred method works so well for being such a low-tech technique is because it makes available a large amount of O2 during the first hour after the culture is pitched (direct O2 injection provides the same benefit, but it adds complexity and a possible infection source to the equation).  I have mentioned before that O2 is dissolves into a liquid at the interface between the gas and the liquid.  Anyone who has ever looked at gas-liquid foam has seen that the foam is composed of gas encapsulated in thin layers of liquid.

I am currently attempting to determine if there is any advantage to stirring over shaking.  As most brewing yeast strains exhibit NewFlo flocculation (i.e., they do not flocculate until glucose, mannose, maltose, sucrose, and maltotriose reach genetically set levels), brewing yeast cells generally do not need to be stirred to remain in suspension during the lag and exponential growth phases.  However, I believe that I may have discovered something about stirring and flocculation that I may have overlooked.

A chance observation that I made last night may be the key to the advantage of stirring a culture.  I inoculated 40ml of 5% w/v wort and subcultured two slants on Sunday evening using a slant that I received from the NCYC in the spring.   I usually leave the lid tightened down on my 40ml starters for 24 hours after doing my normal shaken, not stirred maneuver with the media bottle.  I do so because I want to ensure that I have a positive start.  I usually hear a very slight hiss when I loosen the cap.  This culture let out a loud hiss, which told me that the culture contained an elevated amount of dissolved CO2.  I wound up having to degas the culture via swirling.  One thing that I noticed was that the cells had sedimented.  However, they went back into suspension after I degassed the culture.  I figured that this phenomenon was the result of swirling to degas the culture.  However, the cells were still in suspension when I checked on the culture this morning, so dissolved CO2 level may play a part in premature flocculation.


By the way, the culture that I propagated the other night is NCYC 1333.  NCYC 1333 is a Yorkshire culture with a unique set of attributes on paper. NCYC 1333 is supposed to be a head forming, flocculent, and attenuative culture, which is a rather unique set of attributes for any yeast strain, let alone a Yorkshire strain.   







« Last Edit: September 17, 2015, 03:27:28 PM by S. cerevisiae »

Offline erockrph

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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #22 on: September 16, 2015, 01:01:34 AM »
By the way, the culture that I propagated the other night is NCYC 1333.  NCYC 1333 is a Yorkshire culture with a unique set of attributes on paper. NCYC 1333 is supposed to be a head forming, flocculent, and attenuative culture, which is a rather unique set of attributes for any yeast strain, let alone a Yorkshire strain.   
Interesting. That actually matches my experience with WLP037 rather closely. It is both more flocculant and more attenuative than WLP002, which was quite surprising to me when I first started brewing with it.
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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #23 on: September 16, 2015, 01:30:50 AM »
That actually matches my experience with WLP037 rather closely. It is both more flocculant and more attenuative than WLP002, which was quite surprising to me when I first started brewing with it.

Man, I hope that I did not pay big bucks for WLP037.  :)   

Offline blatz

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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #24 on: September 17, 2015, 02:56:46 PM »
Sierra Nevada and other large breweries use the drauflassen method. Paul, did they mention they have some 1600 barrel fermenters that they use for lagers?

yup!  unreal  :o

Sounds like drauflassen.  In fact, you will probably get more yeast growth if you use a lot more of the wort for the first step.  My last pils I was short on yeast, so I pitched it into only 5 gallons (half the batch), then siphoned the other 5 gallons into the fermenter 24 hours later.  Seemed to produce excellent results for what was about half the yeast "needed" (for 1.5 m cells/ml/Plato).

no question you'll get more growth - i'm just balancing the wort in such a way that i can get an active starter going with good wort (as opposed to an oxidized extract gruit) and get it kickstarted into action.   Am possibly going to try this again this weekend with some PurePitch 001 and a pale ale...
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Offline kgs

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Re: A Twist on Starter Technique
« Reply #25 on: September 19, 2015, 11:42:37 PM »
At least half the time I mash in the evening, collect the wort, then get up very early for the boil, so I could make that starter at night and pitch it as soon as I reached pitching temp. Interesting!
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