To be fair to fermentis, dry lager yeast lagged dry ale yeast by many years. A lot of people believed that lager strains could not withstand the dry yeast manufacturing process. What I want to know is what happened that pushed a yeast culture with an 73% to a yeast culture with an AA in the 80s. Was Fermentis W-34/70 obtained directly from Weihenstephan Hefebank? Or was it obtained from a brewery that used W-34/70? How far from the original is the product that Fermentis ships from the source culture genetically? Is getting a good 11g package of W-34/70 the luck of the draw and I just got one or two bad packages? The expiration date on batch packages was in 2023. I am sitting on two more packages of W-34/70 that are probably going to be tossed into the trash. I have never had much in the way of luck with Fermentis yeast. S-04 and US-05 were both no-gos. I also have four packages of Verdant IPA and two packages of Voss that I am determining whether or not they are going to be pitched. I have had better luck with Lallemand's dry yeast strains than Fermentis when it comes to not producing weird flavors. I have used Nottingham and BRY-97 for two spur of the moment brews. I will not use Nottingham again because while it did not have any weird off-flavors, it did not have any flavor period. That culture makes Chico seem fruity. BRY-97 did not produce much in the way of off-flavors either, but the lag time is ridiculous. If I am going to spend $9+ for yeast for a 5-gallon batch of beer, I am going to use liquid or cultured yeast.
i agree with s-05, it was and is the default "best" yeast for beginners. but often enough it just wouldn't sit well with me, thats why ive been trying to find a cheap and easy dry yeast to replace it. come slightly warmer weather ill be trying the highly recommended BRY-97.
did you test all of the varieties of dry yeast, even the less popular ones? i hear the abbaye is far from the fruitiness and big flavours of liquid belgian, and is in fact pretty mild, with around 80% attenutation. if you find it tasty, that could be a good regular yeast?
im going to try as many dry yeasts as i can, as it is a better system (well, significantly easier) than liquid.
-hope to try WB-06 in the manner its intended as a close relative of WLP570, ie in a belgian blonde.
-try abbaye with a simple grist to see its flavour.
-would love to try verdant IPA if i see it
are you a professional taster in any way? i have a good sense of taste, but not anything beyond "good tasting ability" and it is likely fading with age slowly.
edit: why do they even make S-33? i mean ive only heard bad things about it, it has very poor attenuation, etc. just? that and S-23, i dont really understand the reason. i know my LHBS sell both of those, but ive never even bought them.