Author Topic: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast  (Read 8460 times)

Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #30 on: November 20, 2020, 06:42:03 pm »
A friend of mine who went to Siebel would pitch his lagers a bit warm and allow them to cool over the first 24-36 hours to fermentation range, going from 64F down to 52-54F.  He won many comps before going pro
I've had good results with a similar approach. I can only get my wort down to low-mid 60s so I pitch the yeast late afternoon and put the fv in a cabinet that's near 50. The wort gets down to the low 50s by morning and the yeast is working by noon or so.
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Offline Saccharomyces

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #31 on: November 21, 2020, 09:33:56 pm »
I've had good results with a similar approach. I can only get my wort down to low-mid 60s so I pitch the yeast late afternoon and put the fv in a cabinet that's near 50. The wort gets down to the low 50s by morning and the yeast is working by noon or so.

The practice of pitching a few degrees higher than fermentation and allowing the wort to come down in temperature works much better than the inverse.

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #32 on: November 22, 2020, 01:40:05 pm »
I have had great success over the years pitching at or near pitching temps. If pitched slightly warmer and brought down before fermentation starts that's fine. Starting a fermentation off warm and bringing temp down is what makes me cringe.

Offline Saccharomyces

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #33 on: November 22, 2020, 02:59:41 pm »
I have had great success over the years pitching at or near pitching temps. If pitched slightly warmer and brought down before fermentation starts that's fine. Starting a fermentation off warm and bringing temp down is what makes me cringe.

I agree if we are talking about more than five to ten degree difference combined with a slow reduction in temperature, which is probably more common without artificial cooling in warmer climates.  I have always pitched lagers around 16C (61F) and allowed them to drop into the 13C (55F) range.  I routinely pitch ales at 22C (72F) and allow them to cool to 18C (65F). I cannot remember when I fermented an ale below 65F (internal) on purpose.  That may have happened a couple of times during the early days when the temperature in my basement dropped below 17C (62F).  However, I used to brew with the seasons back in those days, so I usually switched over to making lager when ambient temperature in my basement dropped below 16C.   That basement would get down to as low as 9C during the dead of winter because almost half of the wall height was above grade.

Offline denny

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #34 on: November 22, 2020, 03:16:25 pm »
I've had good results with a similar approach. I can only get my wort down to low-mid 60s so I pitch the yeast late afternoon and put the fv in a cabinet that's near 50. The wort gets down to the low 50s by morning and the yeast is working by noon or so.

The practice of pitching a few degrees higher than fermentation and allowing the wort to come down in temperature works much better than the inverse.

Maybe in theory. I don't doubt you.  But my experience is that I get better results the other way around .
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Offline Saccharomyces

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #35 on: November 22, 2020, 04:46:33 pm »
Maybe in theory. I don't doubt you.  But my experience is that I get better results the other way around .

I have not found a single reference to pitching below fermentation temperature outside of the amateur brewing forums.  Most professional references I have seen state to pitch at fermentation temperature or a few degrees higher.  Heck, Chris White take things to the extreme by stating that a lager fermentation can be started in the in high 60s F.   

https://www.whitelabs.com/faq/brewing/what-temperature-should-i-pitch-lager-yeast


I have never started a lager above 18C, but I think I am going to try it when manage to get my new brew house up and running.  I prefer to pitch as soon as possible, which means as soon as I can get the wort down to as far as my wort chiller can get it given my water supply temperature.  I used to be able to get my wort down to the temperature of the chilling water with a gravity-fed 25' counterflow chiller.  It can be done with a pump-fed counterflow chiller, but the chiller has to be longer or the flow rate needs to be reduced to that of a gravity-fed counterflow chiller, which is not fast.

By the way, I moving completely away from using US customary units of measure, as they no longer make sense to me in the world of brewing.  I buy grain in kilograms, measure starter media in grams, and all of the yeast work I do is in metric.  Every brewing and brewing science publication I read uses the metric system. It is a shame that the U.S. is one of the few countries in the world that still holds on to an Imperial units of measure-based system when even Great Britain has moved away from it for the most part.  While I may be wrong, I believe that we are the only industrialized country in the world that has held on to the Fahrenheit scale.  I believe that I have mentioned it before, but the rest temperatures 140, 149, and 158F translate to 60, 65, and 70C.  It is a lot easier to remember 60, 65, and 70C.  The metric system makes more sense than U.S. customary units of measure after one stops thinking in U.S. units and converting to metric units and starts thinking in metric units. It is like a learning a new language in that way. Plus, it is a lot easier to share information with non-American brewers who are forced to do conversions to U.S. units.  What is interesting is that every school-age American kid in the seventies was taught the metric system.  Back then, it was the members of the greatest generation and the older members of the silent generation who were resistant to switching to the metric system.  Today, Americans still hold on to U.S. units even though the U.S., in practice, is a mixed U.S. units/metric units world, just look at tools.  I have to have U.S. and metric wrenches in order to work on the things I own.  I have to be aware of metric thread bolts and screws.  I just worked on gas line flare fittings that are 1/4", but the outside of the swivel nut is 14mm.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2020, 06:23:15 pm by Saccharomyces »

Offline denny

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #36 on: November 22, 2020, 04:57:45 pm »
Mark, I appreciate your info and advice,  but I live by the words "Reality often astonishes theory".  I learn the sciende and try it out.  Because I understand the science, I also try out things that may appear contrary to science.  Whichever gets me the results I want is what I do.  All that matters is the beer in the glass.
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Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #37 on: November 23, 2020, 10:58:10 pm »
One of the best beers that I've ever poured down my neck was the PH from the classic cellar in Pilsen. The unfiltered unpasteurized one, straight from the 4000 Liter Lagering barrels.

That beer is pitched at 5C, then rises, how high I'm not sure. They had daily temperature reading marked in chalk on the wooden fermenters. Not sure of the final temp.

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Offline BrewBama

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #38 on: November 23, 2020, 11:33:58 pm »
...  Whichever gets me the results I want is what I do.  All that matters is the beer in the glass.

I’ll drink to that.

The science is fascinating ...and Mark, you are a wealth of knowledge. I take copious notes when you post. Thank you for that.


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Offline Cliffs

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #39 on: November 24, 2020, 12:48:37 am »
sometimes I think I know a bit about yeast, and then I read a saccharomyces post and am brought back down to earth :)

Offline Saccharomyces

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #40 on: November 26, 2020, 07:21:44 pm »
Mark, I appreciate your info and advice,  but I live by the words "Reality often astonishes theory".  I learn the sciende and try it out.  Because I understand the science, I also try out things that may appear contrary to science.  Whichever gets me the results I want is what I do.  All that matters is the beer in the glass.

I am not a pure scientist, but like most engineering types, I rely on science to put me on the page.  Engineering is applied mathematics combined with applied science.  It is a discipline that combines theory plus practice.  In that way, engineers are neither mathematicians or scientists. However, there no denying that theory is what allows engineers to push the outside of the envelope. That being said, most of what is encountered in day-to-day engineering is not outside of the envelope work.  It is step-wise refinement, which relies on empirical data because most of the models we have are merely approximations of real-world phenomena.  That mindset is the reason why I push knowing how a particular culture performs in one's brewery is cannot be replaced by a yeast calculator.   It is also why I do not pitch below fermentation temperature because I know that it extends the replication period.

I am curious as to why the brewery sited by Jeff pitches that low.  Is it because the practice improves fermentation or because it helps to control thermal runaway?  Metabolic activity is very high during replication.  Cooling a batch of wort enough to prevent thermal runaway is no big deal for an amateur brewer.  However, cooling 3500+ hectoliters of activity fermenting wort is an entirely different engineering problem.  One way to do that is to slow replication, which spreads heat production over a longer period.

Offline lupulus

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #41 on: November 26, 2020, 07:46:20 pm »


Maybe in theory. I don't doubt you.  But my experience is that I get better results the other way around .

I have not found a single reference to pitching below fermentation temperature outside of the amateur brewing forums.  Most professional references I have seen state to pitch at fermentation temperature or a few degrees higher.

Narziss, Kunze, Back all recommend pitching below fermentation temperature.
Can you list the pro references you have seen?
Thanks!

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Offline Saccharomyces

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #42 on: November 26, 2020, 08:23:25 pm »
Narziss, Kunze, Back all recommend pitching below fermentation temperature.
Can you list the pro references you have seen?

Most of the professional publications I have read do not call for pitching below fermentation temperature. I have never read a German brewing publication because a) I do not speak German and b) the books that have been translated to English are ridiculously priced.  Chris White is the big reference for pitching above fermentation temperature and allowing the temperature to drop.  I trust Chris because there is no doubt that he has put time in the woodshed with respect to this one and I understand yeast well enough to know that what he is doing is backed up by science.  Chris was the first person I heard talk about fermenting lagers under pressure at what are considered to be ale temperatures.  Most brewers would think that was blasphemy.  He and his team are routinely pushing the outside of the envelope.  One of the largest costs encountered in brewing is refrigeration.  That is why there is so much interest in the Kveik cultures.

Th reality is that lager brewing practices are sub-optimal for ale brewing.  Carlsberg Unterhefe No. 1 (the Saaz family type yeast strain) combined with mechanical refrigeration made brewing on scale that was previously impossible.  Why?  Because Saaz strains are highly cryotolerant and wild yeast and bacteria are not, which means a brewer can get away with practices that will not fly in an ale brewery because fermentation temperatures cannot be dropped low enough to avoid wild yeast and bacteria replication.  With ale brewing, one has to rely on the yeast culture consuming all of the dissolved O2, lowering the pH, and producing ethanol in order to out compete competitors.  With lager brewing, one can hold the temperature low enough that competitors are shut out from the start.  In essence, lager brewing is a completely different type of brewing where many of the rules do not apply to ale brewing and vice versa.

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #43 on: November 26, 2020, 08:27:16 pm »
https://photos.app.goo.gl/2ZRssskacaYxsRj6A

Photos from Pilsner Urquell's cellars where they still make the unfiltered in pasteurized beer.

Photo of wood fermenter. Those have about 4000 liters. You can still see some krausen.

Second is the day in dd/mm as they do in Europe. Temp is next.

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« Last Edit: November 26, 2020, 08:33:02 pm by hopfenundmalz »
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Offline Saccharomyces

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Re: Reusing 34/70 dry lager yeast
« Reply #44 on: November 26, 2020, 08:32:32 pm »
With a rise to 8C, that is definitely a Saaz lager strain.