Author Topic: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?  (Read 2126 times)

Offline Megary

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #30 on: April 21, 2022, 05:08:59 pm »
The other thing to understand, is that with a higher gravity beer, S-04 will perform very well when over pitched.
I don't have the exact volume that we used on the Barleywine, but it was certainly close to 3 quarts of slurry or more, for a 5 gallon brew.

There was no peach, apricot, apple, or other fruity flavors with this. Pretty clean, overall. An excellent ale yeast.

The plan is to use this yeast in an upcoming Stout.

I think this yeast would work well for most any type of ale.

It certainly depends on what type of Stout you are looking for, but BRY-97 makes a far better (American or Irish) Dry Stout than S-04.  I’ll die on this hill.   :)

Offline Iliff Ave

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #31 on: April 21, 2022, 05:10:39 pm »
The other thing to understand, is that with a higher gravity beer, S-04 will perform very well when over pitched.
I don't have the exact volume that we used on the Barleywine, but it was certainly close to 3 quarts of slurry or more, for a 5 gallon brew.

There was no peach, apricot, apple, or other fruity flavors with this. Pretty clean, overall. An excellent ale yeast.

The plan is to use this yeast in an upcoming Stout.

I think this yeast would work well for most any type of ale.
The peach/apricot thing is in reference to 05. This has been covered in painful detail. It’s my fault. I mentioned as a comparison point to 04. Nothing else.
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Offline Bel Air Brewing

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #32 on: April 21, 2022, 05:19:45 pm »
The other thing to understand, is that with a higher gravity beer, S-04 will perform very well when over pitched.
I don't have the exact volume that we used on the Barleywine, but it was certainly close to 3 quarts of slurry or more, for a 5 gallon brew.

There was no peach, apricot, apple, or other fruity flavors with this. Pretty clean, overall. An excellent ale yeast.

The plan is to use this yeast in an upcoming Stout.

I think this yeast would work well for most any type of ale.
The peach/apricot thing is in reference to 05. This has been covered in painful detail. It’s my fault. I mentioned as a comparison point to 04. Nothing else.

Ok, good to know. I have some S-05 in my fridge. Never used it before. It was purchased with the thought it was the Chico Ale Yeast strain.
« Last Edit: April 21, 2022, 05:27:47 pm by Bel Air Brewing »
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Offline Iliff Ave

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #33 on: April 21, 2022, 07:11:27 pm »
The other thing to understand, is that with a higher gravity beer, S-04 will perform very well when over pitched.
I don't have the exact volume that we used on the Barleywine, but it was certainly close to 3 quarts of slurry or more, for a 5 gallon brew.

There was no peach, apricot, apple, or other fruity flavors with this. Pretty clean, overall. An excellent ale yeast.

The plan is to use this yeast in an upcoming Stout.

I think this yeast would work well for most any type of ale.
The peach/apricot thing is in reference to 05. This has been covered in painful detail. It’s my fault. I mentioned as a comparison point to 04. Nothing else.

Ok, good to know. I have some S-05 in my fridge. Never used it before. It was purchased with the thought it was the Chico Ale Yeast strain.
It is for me but apparently not for a lot of others. You’ll have to form your own opinion and not let others tell you.
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Offline denny

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #34 on: April 22, 2022, 08:44:57 am »
The other thing to understand, is that with a higher gravity beer, S-04 will perform very well when over pitched.
I don't have the exact volume that we used on the Barleywine, but it was certainly close to 3 quarts of slurry or more, for a 5 gallon brew.

There was no peach, apricot, apple, or other fruity flavors with this. Pretty clean, overall. An excellent ale yeast.

The plan is to use this yeast in an upcoming Stout.

I think this yeast would work well for most any type of ale.
The peach/apricot thing is in reference to 05. This has been covered in painful detail. It’s my fault. I mentioned as a comparison point to 04. Nothing else.

Ok, good to know. I have some S-05 in my fridge. Never used it before. It was purchased with the thought it was the Chico Ale Yeast strain.

It's a variety of the Chico strain. 05, 1056, and 001 all have the same heritage but produce different results.
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Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #35 on: April 24, 2022, 08:59:07 am »
I've gotten anywhere from 72% attenuation with S-04 in an attempt to recreate a 200 year old porter to 82% in a barleywine that got me the best score I ever received. And 75% in a best bitter and an export stout.
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Offline Bel Air Brewing

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #36 on: April 24, 2022, 10:41:41 am »
I've gotten anywhere from 72% attenuation with S-04 in an attempt to recreate a 200 year old porter to 82% in a barleywine that got me the best score I ever received. And 75% in a best bitter and an export stout.

How did your Barleywine do in the competition? S-04 makes a great Barleywine (English).
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Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #37 on: April 25, 2022, 08:06:33 am »
I've gotten anywhere from 72% attenuation with S-04 in an attempt to recreate a 200 year old porter to 82% in a barleywine that got me the best score I ever received. And 75% in a best bitter and an export stout.

How did your Barleywine do in the competition? S-04 makes a great Barleywine (English).
I entered it and got mid 30s with the notation that it was too hoppy for style. I entered it again the next year and got scored a 42 and second in BOS.
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Offline Bel Air Brewing

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #38 on: May 01, 2022, 06:13:43 am »
I've gotten anywhere from 72% attenuation with S-04 in an attempt to recreate a 200 year old porter to 82% in a barleywine that got me the best score I ever received. And 75% in a best bitter and an export stout.

How did your Barleywine do in the competition? S-04 makes a great Barleywine (English).
I entered it and got mid 30s with the notation that it was too hoppy for style. I entered it again the next year and got scored a 42 and second in BOS.

Cool! This backs up what Denny said about the beer improving and doing better in competitions with age.
Our Winter Warmer (English Barleywine - 10.44% ABV) was brewed over a year ago, March, 2021. It will be entered in the 2023 Bluebonnet.
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Offline ScallyWag

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #39 on: May 01, 2022, 10:46:53 am »
So you guys who are aging barleywines for a year or 2 (or more), what temperature are you storing them at for the interim? 

I've got some I made about 6 months ago, my first time attempting this style, and I've got about half of the bottles in a fridge at 35 degrees, and the other half in my basement fermenting area which is currently about 60, and will reach about 63 in August before declining into the mid-50s next winter (which is about where the bottles started out 6 months ago).

I've tried a few bottles already, and they're pretty good now... but I'll try not to drink them all too early.

Offline denny

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #40 on: May 01, 2022, 11:17:38 am »
So you guys who are aging barleywines for a year or 2 (or more), what temperature are you storing them at for the interim? 

I've got some I made about 6 months ago, my first time attempting this style, and I've got about half of the bottles in a fridge at 35 degrees, and the other half in my basement fermenting area which is currently about 60, and will reach about 63 in August before declining into the mid-50s next winter (which is about where the bottles started out 6 months ago).

I've tried a few bottles already, and they're pretty good now... but I'll try not to drink them all too early.

For me, coolish room temp.  Maybe around 60F.
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Offline Bel Air Brewing

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #41 on: May 01, 2022, 11:18:18 am »
So you guys who are aging barleywines for a year or 2 (or more), what temperature are you storing them at for the interim? 

I've got some I made about 6 months ago, my first time attempting this style, and I've got about half of the bottles in a fridge at 35 degrees, and the other half in my basement fermenting area which is currently about 60, and will reach about 63 in August before declining into the mid-50s next winter (which is about where the bottles started out 6 months ago).

I've tried a few bottles already, and they're pretty good now... but I'll try not to drink them all too early.

Initially, the temp was 31 F. For many months. Now it is stored at 35-38 F.

Watched a long interview with Charlie Bamforth. He discussed the negative impact of elevated temperature on beer over long term storage. It convinced me to keep the beer cold, real cold, regardless of how long you want to age / store it.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2022, 02:19:51 pm by Bel Air Brewing »
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Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #42 on: May 02, 2022, 07:58:49 am »
So you guys who are aging barleywines for a year or 2 (or more), what temperature are you storing them at for the interim? 

I've got some I made about 6 months ago, my first time attempting this style, and I've got about half of the bottles in a fridge at 35 degrees, and the other half in my basement fermenting area which is currently about 60, and will reach about 63 in August before declining into the mid-50s next winter (which is about where the bottles started out 6 months ago).

I've tried a few bottles already, and they're pretty good now... but I'll try not to drink them all too early.

Initially, the temp was 31 F. For many months. Now it is stored at 35-38 F.

Watched a long interview with Charlie Bamforth. He discussed the negative impact of elevated temperature on beer over long term storage. It convinced me to keep the beer cold, real cold, regardless of how long you want to age / store it.
It also depends on what storage capacity you have. Currently I brew beer in the 4-6% range, a month's worth at a time, so no long tome storage issues.
I don't know when (if) I'll ever have the ability to age anything at low temperature.
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Offline ScallyWag

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #43 on: August 15, 2022, 02:13:27 pm »
Guys:  I am updating this thread after making SEVEN batches of ale using S-04 over the course of about 8-9 weeks.  A pale ale, a bitter, a blonde ale, a dark ale, another pale ale, an American wheat and a cream ale.  The first batch of pale ale is already gone and it was delicious.  If I concentrated very hard I would pick up some slight diacetyl but that wasn't every time I drank it.  No sign of it in the bitter and the blonde ale (with Liberty) was put on tap last night... no diacetyl at all.  But I have to comment on the character that this yeast brings... it's fantastic.  It has such a nice, bready character.  No real estery nonsense going on and it drops like a rock.  I let it ferment on the lower level of my place (probably in the low 60s) for a couple days and then moved it upstairs.  I feel like S-04 is going to be my go-to dry ale yeast going forward after this run of beers.  The description on the Fermentis website says "English and American styles" and I agree with that.  A smidge more "English" than you might get in a BRY-97 or US-05, 1056, WLP001 but that's okay with me.  Cheers Beerheads.


Thanks for the follow-up.  I have to say, the few times (twice) that I have used S-04, it has been a bit of a disappointment.  I'm certainly willing to accept Brewer's error as the reason, but I have found it rather low attenuating (68% in a Stout and 68% in a Brown), a bit sludgy in the fermenter, yeasty, and lacking in the fruity/floral notes (as per Fermentis's description).  Maybe a Stout and a Brown were just awful choices for this yeast and your (lighter, less roasty) beers play to this yeast's strengths??  Not sure, but I think you are persuading me to give S-04 another shot.
The Fermentis site says the attenuation is 73-82% and I swear I laughed out loud when I read that because it's seems VERY optimistic. 

So, VillageTaphouse:  what attenuations were you getting from this most recent group of S-04s?  (I see Steve Ruch was getting 72% to 82%, with a 75% noted in there.)  Given the recent change in this strain that some are alluding to, I was wondering if older experiences of AA% are still reliable. 

I had no intention of trying S-04 in the near future, but now maybe I might.

ETA: also, I just saw Dave [dmtaylor] mention on another thread that he is consistently getting 78%-80% recently.  Might have to try a few generations of this.
« Last Edit: August 16, 2022, 08:04:08 am by ScallyWag »

Online tommymorris

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Re: Can someone refresh my memory regarding S-04?
« Reply #44 on: August 15, 2022, 05:20:35 pm »
I just brewed an Amber Ale and a bitter with S04.  Bother we’re mashed at about 151F for 60 minutes. Both had approximately 8% caramel malts, 91% base malts, and 1% roasted malts for color. Both had 83% apparent attenuation.