Author Topic: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts  (Read 427 times)

Offline frankvw

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Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« on: November 29, 2019, 02:39:16 PM »
Most monastic style (Abbey or Trappist like) Belgian ales are brewed with yeasts from the WLP5xx range (or their Wyeast equivalents). The yeasts I'm looking at have their origins *) in the following breweries:

WLP500 (Monastery) - Chimay
WLP510 (Bastogne) - Orval **)
WLP530 (Abbey) - Westmalle
WLP540 (Abbey IV) - Rochefort
WLP545 (Belgian Strong Ale) - Val-Dieu
WLP550 (Belgian Ale) - Achouffe

*) While these yeasts originate from these breweries, they are no longer identical as they have had decades to diverge.
**) Note that Orval is bottle conditioned with a wild yeast culture native to the region which contains a lot of Brett and several other critters.

I am looking for a comparison between these yeasts: apparent attenuation, ester levels, phenol levels, alcohol tolerances, temperature ranges and so on. Is there such a document somewhere? I haven't been able to find anything. White Labs' data as published on their website is rather... limited.  :)

Obviously a back-to-back split-batch test brew would be the way to establish how these yeasts compare, but I currently don't have the means to do that yet. Some day maybe...

All pointers in the right direction would be appreciated!!

// FvW

Offline denny

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2019, 03:19:33 PM »
I'm not a White Labs user but I could give yoh comments on the West equivalents of several of them if you're interested.
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Offline Stand

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2019, 04:32:23 PM »
Brew Like a Monk has some nice charts that gives exactly what you're looking for, but I can't find my book.  Also, probably a copyright violation for me to post that.  It also talks about their sensory impacts based on higher and lower temp fermentations.  Very useful.  For what it's worth I use WLP530 in all things Belgian except saisons. 

For my money WLP530 is where it's at.

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2019, 05:01:44 PM »
There is this blog, with the family tree.
http://beer.suregork.com/

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Offline frankvw

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2019, 07:35:10 AM »
Thanks for the replies, everyone. I've had a look at the sensory data in BLAM and that's a great start! Unfortunately WLP540 is missing, though, and how the levels of spicy and fruity notes compare isn't clear, either, but I suppose that takes a lab test from comparative fermentations of a standard wort.

I'm not a White Labs user but I could give yoh comments on the West equivalents of several of them if you're interested.
Yes please! I'm definitely interested!

I've found WLP540 to take forever to go through the few final gravity points, which means you'll either end up leaving it in the fermenter so long that most volatile phenols have disappeared, or you get enough bottle attenuation to overcarbonate the beer after a few months. Does anyone have the same experience? Are other 5xx yeasts better in that respect?

// FvW

Offline denny

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2019, 04:17:04 PM »
Thanks for the replies, everyone. I've had a look at the sensory data in BLAM and that's a great start! Unfortunately WLP540 is missing, though, and how the levels of spicy and fruity notes compare isn't clear, either, but I suppose that takes a lab test from comparative fermentations of a standard wort.

I'm not a White Labs user but I could give yoh comments on the West equivalents of several of them if you're interested.
Yes please! I'm definitely interested!

I've found WLP540 to take forever to go through the few final gravity points, which means you'll either end up leaving it in the fermenter so long that most volatile phenols have disappeared, or you get enough bottle attenuation to overcarbonate the beer after a few months. Does anyone have the same experience? Are other 5xx yeasts better in that respect?

// FvW

If you look at BLAM again, you'll see Stan ays that the last 10% of fermentation often takes as long as the first 90%.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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Offline frankvw

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2019, 02:38:50 PM »
If you look at BLAM again, you'll see Stan ays that the last 10% of fermentation often takes as long as the first 90%.
I see. That's challenging. I've left a dubbel in fermentation for 3 weeks, primed conservatively and now after 3 months it's still horribly over-carbonated. And a lot of the volatile spicy phenols had already disappeared (maybe because I'm at 1750m altitude).

Not sure how others deal with that. Suggestions, anyone?

// FvW

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #7 on: December 01, 2019, 03:13:34 PM »
Dave

The world will become a much more pleasant place to live when each and every one of us realizes that we are all idiots.

Offline hopfenundmalz

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Offline frankvw

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2019, 11:14:16 AM »

Offline Stand

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #10 on: December 17, 2019, 12:22:40 AM »
Fantastic comparison!  Now I want to try WLP550 :D

Offline James Jacobson

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2020, 03:31:00 AM »
The 540 looks really interesting based on that experiment maybe for a Belgian pale ale or Belgian ipa.

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Offline Northern_Brewer

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Re: Comparing WLP5xx range yeasts
« Reply #12 on: January 05, 2020, 02:37:04 PM »
As the attenuation data shows, WLP540 isn't really a Belgian yeast, DNA sequencing shows it's a British yeast related to Ringwood, Bedford etc but with higher ABV tolerance. Supposedly Rochefort struggled a bit after WWII to get a yeast that suited their conditions, and in the 1960s a consultant ended up raiding the Palm yeast bank for them.